Finding a hobby you truly love is a luxury. It can stimulate your creative side as well as help you to relax when times get hard. Fishing is a popular hobby among boat owners. With all of the excitement also comes a lot of responsibility. There so much out there now that can effect our environment if we are not careful In our other blogs we’ve mentioned a few times that we need to be aware of fishing line and other debris that effect our waters, but now we can go into some detail to help with the clean-up. Here are a few tips to help you to ensure a fun and environmentally safe fishing trip.
Leave the area better than you found it, in other words, pack out what you pack in. You can carry a trash bag to pick up litter left by others. This may not seem like an ideal fishing trip (cleaning up after others) but you wouldn’t want to fish in a mess left by someone else, so save yourself and others the trouble by cleaning up after yourself. In particular, pack out any discarded fishing line—monofilament line is especially dangerous to wildlife. Certain areas will have a Monofilament Recycling Bin to discard of any fishing line. This is to reduce the potential harm of the wildlife if the fishing line is left unattended.
Another great tip would be to use artificial lures whenever possible. Live bait can introduce exotics to an area. If you do use live bait, try to use bait native to the area you are fishing.
If practicing catch-and-release, use barbless single hooks and keep fish in the water as much as possible. When holding a large fish for a photo, hold it horizontally and support its weight. Respecting what you catch, it’s respecting the hobby itself.
Before and after a trip, wash your gear, your watercraft, and vehicle to reduce the spread of invasive species. Drain any livewells, bilge water and transom wells at the boat launch prior to leaving.