Wednesday Wake-Up Call 05.26.21

Welcome to the latest installment of the Wednesday Wake-Up Call, a roundup of the most pressing conservation issues important to anglers. Working with our friends at Trout UnlimitedBackcountry Hunters & Anglers, the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation PartnershipThe Everglades FoundationCaptains for Clean, and Conservation Hawks (among others), we’ll make sure you’ve got the information you need to understand the issues and form solid opinions.

If you know of an important issue–whether it’s national or local–that anglers should be paying attention to, comment below, and we’ll check it out!

1. Algae Blooms and Toxic Water Continue to Threaten South Florida

For the past several weeks, we’ve been tracking the algae blooms of Florida’s Lake Okeechobee and the threats they pose to the St. Lucie and Caloosahatchee estuaries. Captains for Clean Water have created an easy-to-use form to help you make your voice heard by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, who control the Lake O discharges.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers currently manages Lake Okeechobee water levels based on a flawed operating system (LORS 2008) that prioritizes the needs of special interests at the expense of all others. The Corps is writing a new rulebook, the Lake Okeechobee System Operating Manual (LOSOM), but the proposed models still fail to represent all system components equally. Use this form to take action and urge the Corps to include a proactive water management strategy that distributes the water fairly among all users in order to reduce harm and benefit all stakeholders.

Click here to make your voice heard!

For related stories on South Florida water issues, check out these stories from around the Web:

2. Brown Trout Populations Decline in Southwestern Montana

Patrick Fulkrod of South Holston River Company shows off a springtime beauty on the Madison.
Photo by Patrick Fulkrod

Several rivers in the most storied part of Big Sky Country have seen the numbers of brown trout decline in recent years. The decline of browns in such famed rivers as the Yellowstone, Madison, Big Hole, Clark Fork, Ruby and Beaverhead have biologists stumped:

Biologists at Montana’s Fish, Wildlife & Parks don’t understand why the fish are declining at such a rate and that is what worries them.

The situation is not yet dire, but anyone who loves Montana and trout should hope that a culprit is identified, so that biologists can start working on a solution. The fishing is still great now, but the future is an open question. “This is really going to be one of our top priorities to be working on, to understand what’s going on here with this fish,” said Jim Olsen of Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks.

Click here for the full story.

3. Yellowstone Lake Cutthroats Are Recovering

The iconic species of our oldest national park, the Yellowstone cutthroat has been under pressure from invasive lake trout.
Photo by USFWS

In the early 2000’s, anglers began noting a steep decline in populations of Yellowstone cutthroat trout in Yellowstone Lake and its tributaries. The culprit? Invasive lake trout, which are voracious feeders and apparently love nothing more than dining on cutties. But as Tony Bonavist writes in the River Reporter, things have turned around, thanks to some heroic efforts by the National Park Service, researchers, gillnetters, and volunteers.

Click here for the full story. 

One thought on “Wednesday Wake-Up Call 05.26.21”

  1. So glad you pointed out the problem with browns in SW Montana. I’m gonna leave them alone this year.

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