The Orvis Conservation Blog speaks to our impassioned belief that if we are to benefit from the use of our natural resources, we must be willing to act to preserved them, an ethos we practice by committing 5% of pre-tax profits to conservation.
As head of research for Bonefish & Tarpon Trust, Dr. Aaron Adams works to save inshore game fish and the habitat that sustains them.
photo courtesy Dr. Aaron Adams
Imagine poling across a wide flat in the Florida Keys and seeing hundreds of bonefish—cruising and tailing, in big schools and singles and doubles. To those anglers who have experienced the tough, technically demanding fishing in the Keys in recent years, such a vision sounds like a fairy tale; everyone knows you have to travel to the Bahamas to see bonefish numbers like that. But according to the old-timers lucky enough to have fished the southern tip of Florida in the 1950s and ’60s, things were every bit as good as they are on North Andros today.
A recent study showed that the number of Virginia streams that could support brook trout has increased over the past decade.
photo by Simon Chu
When it comes to brook trout, any good news is welcome news. The brook trout is the state fish here in Virginia, and anglers in my neck of the woods have a deep and abiding reverence for Salvelinus fontinalis. But it is not just the sport that sends many of us into the high mountain streams or up some obscure blue line on a map.
Since 1987, the University of Virginia, Trout Unlimited, and a number of state and federal agencies have been tracking water quality and related ecological conditions in Virginia’s native trout streams. The key concern at the time of the initial survey was the impact of acid rain on the mountain headwater streams that supported reproducing brook trout.
If you’ve found it difficult to make sense of all the arguments for giving the Atlantic striped bass “game fish status”this film from Stripers Forever lays it all out for you. Some of the luminaries of saltwater fishing, from Lou Tabory to Rip Cunningham, weigh in on why this is an important fight for anglers. After you’ve watched the video, visit Stripers Forever online for more information and for tips on how you can help.
Here’s a beautiful but chilling video about how, despite seemingly heroic efforts of biologists, restoration of the Atlantic salmon population of Maine’s Penobscot River is a grinding uphill battle against dams and loss of habitat in the tributaries. There’s still a lot of work to be done.
Yesterday, the 98-year-old Condit Dam on the White Salmon River was breached, allowing water to flow freely for the first time since 1923. It’s an incredible moment for those who seek to open the river to salmon and steelhead, whose passage and access to spawning grounds have been blocked for so long. Watch the dramatic video above to see the historic moment, and then click “Read More” to watch a second video for some historical perspective on the dam itself, why it was removed, and what the effects of a newly wild White Salmon River will be.
According to a poll in June 2011 by the research group Craciun, Bristol Bay fishers are united against the project, with 86.2 percent opposing the mine. An earlier survey by Craciun found that 71 percent of the households in the Bristol Bay area opposed the mine, with only 9 percent even somewhat supportive of it; other polls have found the majority of Alaskans say the mine is not worth the risk.
The video above gives a clear description of how the project would threaten the livelihoods and traditions of the people who live in the Bristol Bay region.
Since OrvisNews.com launched more than a year ago, we’ve been beating the drum in the fight to stop Pebble Mine. For a full description of the project and the threats it poses to the last great run of wild salmon on the planet, visit the Orvis Bristol Bay information page, and then Take Action. This month, you’ll also have the opportunity to meet up with fellow Pebble opponents and learn more about the proposed mine’s effects on the people and wildlife of the region. The Save Bristol Bay Road Show may be coming to a city near you.
Last month, at the American Fisheries Society meeting in Seattle, I sat down with Dr. Andy Danylchuk, assistant professor of fish conservation in the department of Environmental Conservation at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Andy is one of those professors with his hands in a lot of really cool research projects all over the world—from bonefish in. . .
The proposed Over the River project would suspend fabric eight to twenty feet over Colorado’s scenic Arkansas River.
The artist Christo Javacheff, creator of The Gates project in Central Park, has proposed a massive industrial-scale art project for Colorado’s Arkansas River. First envisioned in 1992, Over the River would suspend translucent fabric panels above 5.8 miles of the river in several segments along the 45 miles of Bighorn Sheep Canyon. While the artist’s vision may seem compelling, the nuts and bolts of making it happen are quite another matter. The recently released Final Environmental Impact Statement, published by the US Bureau of Land Management, notes threats to. . .
A host of conservation organizations–including Trout Unlimited, Sportsman’s Alliance for Alaska, and Orvis–has been working for years to stop construction of the Pebble Mine project, which would see the construction of the world’s largest copper and gold mine at the headwaters of the last great wild salmon run in the Bristol Bay region of Alaska. Throughout the debate, the Pebble Limited Partnership has claimed that our fears are unfounded because technological advances will allow them to build this monstrous extraction operation without affecting nearby streams and lakes, which are the spawning grounds for millions of sockeye salmon. This recently released video shows what happens when you fact-check some of these claims. The results are disturbing at best and cast doubt on the viability of the whole operation. To help stop Pebble Mine, visit the Orvis Take Action page.