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hawghunter

proposed legislation

44 posts in this topic

I recieved this by e-mail, not sure if its valid but a good talker anyway.

ATTENTION!!! Fishermen, Bait and Tackle Shops, Resorts, and Landowners

There is proposed legislation that could end the supply of live bait for fishing and fish for stocking our Minnesota lakes.

House File 1188 is written in a way to eliminate the use of ponds for raising fish and live bait. It will end the availability of vital live baits such as golden shiners and sucker minnows and drastically reduce the production of walleye and other game fish at a time when more and more lakes are dependent on stocking.

Senate File 919 will make it impossible for a pond owner’s to grow or allow the raising of fish or bait on their own property and will also reduce live bait and fish production.

These bills will result in less fish available to catch, and very little live bait to choose from so there will be serious impacts on all fishing-related businesses!

Please contact your senator and representative immediately to voice your concern.

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Hi Hawghunter! Hopefully that is a bunch of "hawg wash". I wouldn't worry too much about it, because the only thing our legislators can get done down there is pass raises for themselves. I would think the DNR would have enough common sense to step in and do something about that, but who knows. This is a crazy world we live in. Thanks for the heads up though.

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As I understand the bill text for 1188, it still appears that permits will be issued by the governing parties for aquatic use. On SF 919 it appears to be an issue with public waters and aquaculture. If I understand the two bills correctly I do not believe there will be an affect on use of privately owned waters for the aquaculturists who aquire the correct permits. I wouldn't be too concerned, but things will continue to change over the years.

Jason Erlandson

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The DNR does what it is told. It is run by politicians. They can button hole certain politicians to to get certain bills introduced. Thats about it. If no one speaks up they will do what they want. Good luck talking to your senator or rep. Ive sent e-mails and hard copies to them with only one response" thanks for writing" from Tom Sauxhaug of grand rapids. Havent heard a whimper from Mary olson whose suppose to support outdoor activities in the area. Makes you wonder what you have to do to get their attention. Doesnt seem like their for common folk anymore. Thats enough venting.

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Hawghunter,

Let me guess, you got this e mail from a private aquaculturalist. I would even venture to say his initials are JR.

I wouldn't go calling you reps to oppose this one. Getting a handle on waters, what can and can't be produced in them etc., is a major thing the state should have done years ago. It would be best for the water quality (invasives), ducks, walleyes, and the bait stores and suppliers won't notice a thing. My guess is that this is just an exampe of someone (a group of private aquaculturalists) trying to rally the angling troops for something that really only affects a small private, profit driven business and won't have a negative affect on anglers or their bait supply at all.

ccarlson

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Hey CCarlson,

My son and I went hunting with you last fall - Andy's friend. I was wondering where you where when you caught that monster that your kid is holding? Always looking for another spot to test. How's next year looking? Sorry to get off the beaten path here gents.:>)

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CiscoKidd,

Give me another clue about hunting last fall. What were we hunting for and where? I hunt with a group of guys up in Squaw Lake, otherwise just relatives elsewhere.

Anyway, my daughter caught that 17 pound pike herself from 2 feet of water on a mimic minnow. The same trip she caught a 19" smallie and a 29.5" walleye. She's pretty good at knowing how to fight big fish. All came from a lake in Ontario called Dogtooth. It's a good lake but not easy Canadian fishing by any means.

ccarlson

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Sure we went deer hunting up on the land east of Hackensack. I know Andy who is Charlie's bro-in-law. Sounds like your daughter did really well. I guess we'll see you in the fall again.

Terry

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CiscoKidd,

Sorry, wasn't me. I deer hunt over in Battle Lake. My dad has some land East of Hackensack by blackwater lake that he lets some neighbors hunt but I never have.

ccarlson

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My mistake. The picture being a little grainy obscured just enough to error out. Nice fish anyway!!!

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To get back on track.... some of the wording in the bill may destroy the sucker/shiner minnow industry in MN as we know it. Also, many of the people who raise and distribute these minnows also raise walleye for the DNR and private groups. Seems as if we are concentrating on a very small part of the problem, when we could be doing something about other, more contributing factors such as development, pollution control, etc...

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The person or entity requesting a license renewal for an aquatic farm in waters

1.12of the state must submit for each body of water a management plan that is designed to

1.13ensure that the ecological value for that water for supporting waterfowl and other native

1.14aquatic wildlife will be restored to its original condition.

In theory it all sounds good, but who decides what the "original condition" is and if those looking for permits want to continue providing us bait, I am sure they will have to hire extra staff to complete this task and that relates to MUCH HIGHER minnow prices. I guess I don't see this as no big deal, unless the legislature is about effective as they have been in the past few sessions, then nothing will get decided anyway

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Mostly it depends on what waters you are using as rearing ponds. All the bait dealers that I have dealt with own the ponds or lease them from private land owners. Trying to use public waters for rearing would be quite a risk for numerous reasons.

Jason Erlandson

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I guess I read "waters of the state" as any waters in the state, not waters "owned by the state." Did I misunderstand?

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After talking to one of my bait dealers I realize that there are some troubling issues with this legislation. Some of the proposed bills even would limit access via right of ways, including some of the lakes and rivers we fish here in the Brainerd area. If you guys have a minute I would take the time to email or call our representatives and let them know we do not support these bills. If these bills pass it could get a little ugly for anglers.

Jason Erlandson

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You’re welcome wink.gif

done deal

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We are entering an age where exotics are spreading at alarming rates.

Have you guys done any reading about the virus spreading throughout the great lakes?

A few years ago I thought Canada was being political when they quit allowing bait across the border. Now we know why that have been doing it. I give them a lot of credit. Hopefully we are smart enough to error on the side of caution and protect our lakes from further spread. I see this bill has more to do with riparian rights but it could be a step in gaining control of our waters.

I particularly like section f that states the waters need to be maintained to support wildlife and fish.

I'm not defending the legislation or supporting it though as I don't see that as our job to speculate.

It makes me nervous that we see such issues as this as political and try to influence decision based on our convenience. I get nervous basing a decision on the information provided by a bait dealer.

Where do the DNR wildlife and fisheries biologists stand on this issue? I would like to hear some first hand information from them rather than second hand speculation and bucket biology going into the decision.

ccarlson

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I agree that alot of the time things are done only with the thought of ones conveinence in mind. And with these sports being marketed as they are(fishing, hunting, nature), we do need to be wary of the impact that we are putting on lakes and wildlife. There is probablly some things that should happen in this bill, but the people who write these bills are simply looking at the numbers as a collective and trying to apply them to everything...not that that is bad, but not all of it is problematic.

From what I understand regarding this bill, the senate is not changing much. You already have to obtain a license to raise and trap minnows/leeches.

You have to have a "hatchery" license to take sucker eggs from the rivers.

In the past year, you now have to take a class in order to obtain the tags that are required on every minnow trap that is set.

And on top of it all you must retain a MN fishing license.

I feel that mostly what this bill is doing, is creating more hoops for the bait trappers to jump through.

Don't get me wrong though, there needs to be regulations and rules to ensure some sort of balance.

I have worked both ends of this industry, retail and wholesale. I have experienced the sheer draining and grueling work involved with it. I will always have respect for the guys that supply the bait shops.

From my experience, I can honestly say that birds, mainly pelicans, are more of the culperate here when it comes to introducing foreign aquatic species.

We dealt mainly with privately owned ponds. Most of them in the middle of a farmers pasture. Every pond looked the same.

They all had the same aquatic speices in them, and they all had the same water clearity, and for the most part, the same mix of minnows. And every last one of them held ducks and other wilflife. 1/4 acre to 20 acres, the only difference was the depth, and how many cows you had to move to get there.

Very little trapping is done in public waters.

Shiners in the spring come from public lakes, and redtails come from public rivers/streams(not trapped though, they have to be seined, thats why they are so much $$)

These traps/nets are generally clean when they go in the water, or have been used in only that area.

This bill has been in the works now since last summer, and was shot down and taken back to the drawing board.

I would love to answer any bait ?'s that people have, because rarely do I get to spread this knowledge to the public. smirk.gif

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Thanks for the insight Daddyducker. Ccarlson- I have no problem with trying to protect our natural resources, but you can't base this bill solely on what Biologists that work for the DNR are concerned. They may come up with the "ideal" idea, but many times the "ideal" idea just isn't possible. It is like saying, we need to stop air pollution, so no cars, no factories, no campfires, no burning whatsoever. Would all of this help, sure, but is it possible?? My main problem lies with the "restoring areas to their original condition" part of the bill. What is their original condition?? How far back do we go?? Who decides?? I guess I see this industry as a very, very, very small part of the problem. We could do better creating stricter guidelines for development, runoff, habitat destruction of lake/river shore owners etc. Instead of nipping at the "little guys" who are mostly helpless, lets take a bite out of the big problem!!

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By the way, I am not directing any of my beliefs at anyone specific. I just think their are bigger issues we could be dealing with. I enjoy the fact that FM allows us a chance to debate and talk about concerns as well as help to get the word out to protect our resources grin.gif

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Coach,

I agree completely with your statements about looking after the bigger problems such as development and such. That is kind of what I'm trying to get at too, that this bill is at least a start in getting a better handle on things.

Good discussion.

ccarlson

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I think there is more to this then just restricting minnow raising. There are many ponds around the Detroit Lakes area that I used to go duck hunting or pothole jumping on that no one bothers to hunt anymore and one of the reasons for that is they are full of minnows now instead of freshwater shrimp and other aqutic larvae. Ducks aren't even interested in the ponds but the cormorants sure are. Every year it seems more and more of the places I used to go for anything seem to disappear or aren't as good as they used to be. I have to constanly scout for different, more remote or newer areas to hunt and fish. I guess my point is that some of the things that are regulated are for a benifit, maybe just not in your eyes. I personally would love to see a restriction on the amount of ponds that people can use for raising any bait, including leeches and even raising game fish. I am a fisherman and a hunter but I am always an Ethical Outdoorsman first. Just my 2cents.

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By the way I am not blaming minnow growers for the problems with the ponds in Minnesota I think a lot of it is from natural evolution. I just don't think the DNR is as strong of group as they used to be. There just seems to be less and less done to maintain the land they do have and more emphasis on obtaining new land, that is goingto turn out just like the rest of the land I see, almost useless.

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I agree 100% with what you're saying. How far back do we go, and who decides, and why them?

I moved to the St. Cloud area this last fall, and was suprised to see all the run off ponds they have in the developements here. They actually have a fair amount of wetland too. It seems that there are well maintained precautions when it comes to the wetlands, and water runoff.

However, I was reading in the paper about a month ago; and it pertains to the points in your post.

A prof. from one of the nearby colleges has been doing research on pollutants in the Mississippi river, and the levels increase considerablly the closer you get to highly populated areas, such as Minneapolis, St. Cloud, etc.

They have figured out that these pollutants are chemicals that have been flushed down the drain. Things like aspirin, beauty products, personal care products...everyday things.

So basically due to just being here, people are polluting, whether they intend to or not. That is what should be regulated and we should be concerned about that, not things like; "Are the minnow trappers knocking over too many weeds when they access a farmers pond?"

Carlson...I wandered from the subject some, but I think this is more of the problem in which you refer to.

That report stated that those chemicals where infecting fish, and that maybe the next time you plan on taking fish home from the river in a populated area, you might want to think twice. They tested minnows, and the results were alittle scary to say the least.

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