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Lead jigs banned??


Genofish

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Rumor has it that lead jigs will be banned in 2010 on

Rainy, Kab and Namakin. Has anyone else heard this?

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Here's the article from Sunday's Strib:

Park Service to ban lead tackle

Star Tribune

Last update: March 15, 2009 - 1:58 AM

"The National Park Service intends to ban lead fishing tackle in all its parks, including Minnesota's Voyageurs National Park, by the end of 2010.

That means lead tackle could be prohibited on at least parts of Rainy, Kabetogama, Namakan, Sand Point and a few smaller lakes.

"We want to take a leadership role in removing lead from the environment,'' Park Service Acting Director Dan Wenk said in an announcement last week. The agency also intends to eliminate use of lead ammunition in the parks by next year, a move that won't affect Voyageurs because hunting isn't allowed there.

"We're not planning anything in 2009,'' said Kathleen Przybylski, Voyageurs public affairs officer. "It's a goal to eliminate lead. We're waiting for guidance from Washington.''

If the 2010 deadline is met, the first open water fishing season with lead tackle restrictions would be 2011, Przybylski noted.

"The new restrictions on lead will ensure environmentally safe practices are implemented to protect park visitors and lands,'' the Park Service said.

The American Sportfishing Association said Friday it was "surprised and dismayed'' over the ban and asked the Park Service to reconsider.

The National Shooting Sports Foundation -- the trade association for the shooting, hunting and firearms industry -- also blasted the move, which it called arbitrary, overreactive and not based on science."

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Looks like there is some confusion on this topic. This is from the National Parks main site. READ LAST PARAGRAPH.

**

A surprise press release by the National Park Service launched a national controversy. Acting NPS Director Dan Wenk announced the park service is going lead free. “Our goal is to eliminate the use of lead ammunition and lead fishing tackle in parks by the end of 2010,” Wenk stated in the release. “We want to take a leadership role in removing lead from the environment.”

The ambiguous press release dropped a bomb on sportsmen’s and conservation groups across the country. “The National Park Service’s decision is arbitrary, over-reactive and not based on science,” said Steve Sanetti, president of the National Shooting Sports Foundation, a trade association for the firearms and ammunition industry. “Studies show that traditional ammunition does not pose a health risk to humans, or wildlife populations as a whole.”

Turns out the uproar was all for naught. David Barna, NPS chief of Public Affairs, said it’s not a rule change at all, but rather an in-house decision. “It’s an announcement to let the public know that the PARK SERVICE intends to go to non-lead shot in our weapons and non-lead fishing gear in the work that we do,” said Barna. “It’s not a requirement or regulation for our visitors. We’re just announcing that’s the direction we’re going and we’re encouraging the public to do the same.”

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It won't be a big step from encouragement to rule change.

Should they not encourage it then?

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When the shelves of bait shops are stocked with a reasonable alternative then I will be all for it but not until then. I had some porcelain weights once and they were huge and not very heavy.

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how they going to tell if it is lead or not. poured steel jigs is not an option. Machining is going to cost those make the tackle alot which gets passed on to us.

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Until I see some solid evidence that lead is killing birds or other animals in a number that deserves notice and the shelves get a cost efective alternative I will be using my lead jigs.

If they did a swap that I got 1 for 1 and the alternative did what lead does I would get rid of my hundreds of pounds of lead I use.

Truthfully I cant ever see lead being banned withot whats out there being grandfathered in. Who is going to check my jigs, split shot, bouncers etc. There isnt enough DNR and rangers now and the ones we have are way to spread out.

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Agreed Northlander, and how about the manufactures??? They would have to get new equipment to be able to compete I'm sure.

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What was brought up before was small lead for a ban. Think it was like under a ounce. Things like snap weights, bottom bouncers and ball weights werent included. To the fact of size bieng not for birds to eat.

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I don't see a feasible answer to it ether, I tried a glass jig this year ice fishing and it was the slowest dropping thing I had ever tied on my line. You could make them out of other metals but they would probably be more expensive. It would be hard to save money and make your own jigs if you could not use lead, aluminum is the only other metal I could think of that you could mold your self. I can understand the banning of lead shot for waterfowl, because steal is a little more spendy but it is small enough to get eaten by birds and other animals and its not like we would spend as much money on shot shells as we would jigs and weights. They come out with tungsten jigs and stainless steal but there is no way for the average angler to be able to make their own fishing gear if lead was to be band, and it would be way too expensive especially with the troubles we are having now.

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Im just saying they are already spread out with this would be next to impossible to enforce. I do hear what your saying. You dont want to get caught breaking any law and I surely dont want to lose my fishing privelages.

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If or... when it comes in MN they need to put a provision in there that everthing under 1" is banned, thats what most other states are doing, that would protect most jigs, spinnerbaits, and other lead lures, even birds aint stupid enough to eat a regular walleye jig off the bottom.

For those of you that asked about alternatives bismuth tin mixes are more than likely what you are going to end up with, the problem with them is they are expensive $17 a lb last time I checked, there melting point is far below leads, which means you can't use powder paint on them. Lead costs anywhere from $1 to $2.50 a lb, Tungsten costs somewhere around $60-70 a pound, and melts at like 5000 degrees so it is not practical for the small manufactorer, China holds most of the worlds tungsten supplies, so that rules out local manufactoring, so you can figure out what cost would be passed on to the consumer on a lot of fishing items! Envirmentally cautious is one thing, but slitting the throat of a viable industry is dumb... lets see a study that proves this [PoorWordUsage] before we kill all small tackle manufactorers!

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I was going to write something lengthy about how lead is actually a problem for the environment, but then I realized that many people in this thread seem to just be covering their ears and going "LA LA LA LA LA I DONT CARE OR BELIEVE IT'S A PROBLEM LA LA LA LA LA LA"

Is anyone other than me surprised that there hasn't been any vocal support for people not using lead?

We already have too much mercury and other unwanted materials in our water system.

I'm sure that I'm going to get some people getting upset about what I just wrote, but I don't care. When there are advisories about only eating fish once a week, month, or even less often, we ALREADY have a problem with pollutants, let's not make it worse.

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I'm all for "saving the environment" but a lead ban is not going to do that, there are far worse things out there that people are ignoring. We do not need to go off the deep end on everything..... pretty soon we won't even be able to leave our homes because we might ruin a something in the envronment.

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First of all, is there a credible source telling us that these lead weights or jigs are bad for the ecosystem of the lake? It sounds bad, but where is the data?

Second, is there a better alternative (remember the solution could be worse than the problem)?

Third, are the people that are pushing for a ban living by their words? Mainbutter have you got rid of all your lead?

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They probably found a couple dead birds with a few jigs in their gullet and then assumed the problem must be huge. Typical.

If there was some rock solid studies/evidence I could see this, but no one has published the evidence/study/data yet at least to my knowledge.

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If there was some rock solid studies/evidence I could see this, but no one has published the evidence/study/data yet at least to my knowledge.

Agreed. There is no hard evidence that lead is threatening any wildlife populations. Until something is proven, or the cost of other alternatives comes way down, I'm still using lead.

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I have a hard time listening to the people that want a study done to see if lead is harmful to the lake and wildlife. I think that we all know that answer. If you really don't think that it is harmful to humans and animals if ingested, wake up. How come lead based paint and toys are phased out? I also hear the opinion, it comes down to cost which I personally cannot accept. How many people complaining about the cost of lead alternatives have 300 dollar vexilars and 400 dollar augers or other expensive gear? I think that we can afford the alternative but it comes down to availability. Just my opinion....

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I don’t think anyone is arguing that it’s not harmful if ingested. The real question, is if it is being ingested.

Cost is absolutely a factor, if it wasn’t we would all be using Gold jigs. I bet they work great wink

Just because we know lead is bad to eat, is it bad sitting at the bottom of a lake? Also, is it really sitting at the bottom, or is the lead working its way deep down into the ground where it poses no threat?

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Good post DTRO. I think that fish prefer platinum or diamond jigs over gold. In my opinion, the reality of it is that if we were talking just a few pieces of lead it wouldn't be a problem but I don't want to even think about the amount of lead that must be in M Lacs or Winnie. I just think that the acumulation over time, is like a ticking bomb.. I know it is not a fair comparision, but growing up in Colorado and being a flyfishing guide, it was sickening to know the effects of Mercury from the gold mining. Still affecting the rivers after almost a century.

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agreed dtro. is there really some hard evidence that states that this is a problem? IMO some people really blow things out of perspective. but if the evidence shows that its a problem this yes i am all for change but untill then im not going to worry about it

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There are studies out there, I'm just guessing most of you haven't looked for them. I'm not sure what you call "hard evidence" but the studies do show a coorelation.

I'm not saying I support a ban on lead but I think its worth working toward an eventual replacement.

Here is a quick cut and paste job from one study done by the University of Vermont.

---------------

The Effect of Lead Sinkers on Waterfowl

Lead has been recognized as a detrimental substance to waterfowl as attributed to lead toxicosis. Lead sinkers and jigs are the main cause of lead toxicosis in loons, especially when lead accumulates in heavy fishing areas.

In North America, the Common Loon is most commonly reported as dying from this cause, although at least 23 other species…are vulnerable. Bans on the use of lead fishing weights have been imposed in Yellowstone National Park, Redrocks Lake National Wildlife Refugee, and the National Elk Refugee in the USA. 22% of 202 Common Loons found dead in New England had ingested lead objects, principally sinkers and jigs. All of the loons that had ingested lead were adults representing 38% of the 115 adults examined. The percentage is even higher if birds collected only from fresh water are considered, i.e. 57% of 74 adult birds. These results show that lead toxicosis is a major mortality factor for Common Loons in Eastern North America, although the data probably represents a portion of the birds dying from this cause. Lead poisoned waterfowl commonly hide in dense cover as they become weaker, and are easily overlooked even by those searching for them (Twiss, 1998).

Through experimenting with captive waterfowl it has been shown that a single dose of .3 grams of lead per bird will result in death. Lead sinkers and jigs generally weigh between .5 and 15 grams, hence the ingestion of even one sinker will be fatal to the loon (Twiss, 1998). These sinkers and jigs present a problematic situation to waterfowl based on their feeding habits. Statistics illustrate that the Common Loon (Gavia immer) population, which is listed by the Vermont Non-game and National Heritage Program (NNHP) as a rare and uncommon native species (ftp://ftp.heritage.tnc.org/ pub/nhp/us/vt/vt_anim.html#key), is in decline because of lead toxicosis.

What is lead toxicosis?

Lead toxicosis occurs "when liver lead concentration was 5.00 ppm or above," (Pokras 24). In a study conducted between April 1987 and June 1998 from loon carcasses collected from New England: of 396 loons, 103 had ingested lead objects and tested positive for lead poisoning, (Caldwell 4). "Each of the 103 loons was found to have ingested at least one lead object, yielding a total of 133 lead objects…approximately 95% of the lead objects were found to be less than 1.0 cm across, less than 2.5 cm long, and less than 10.0 g," (Caldwell 5). Therefore, this study found that the lead objects that cause toxicosis can be easily defined.

Why do lead sinkers and jigs present such a problem?

Loons, having no teeth, ingest their food whole. Consequently they must swallow small pebbles to help grind up the food in their stomachs. Lead sinkers and jigs can be mistaken for small pebbles and eaten by the loons. The sinkers and jigs are ground up in the loon’s stomach and the lead is absorbed into the blood and tissues of the loon, leading to poisoning, (http://www.bsc-eoc.org/loonfact.html). Loons, may also eat fish that have lead fishing gear attached. "In nearly one fourth of the cases of loons with ingested lead, other fishing gear (mostly hooks, swivels and monofilament) was present in the gastrointestinal tracts," (Caldwell 5). Loons may have a craving for lead and therefore seek out and ingest these objects. Evidence for this "is circumstantial, but does exist: a) loons are known to select individual stones, and thus determine which objects are ingested, B) sinkers found in gastrointestinal tracts appear worn, and none of the jig heads found in gastrointestinal tracts have attached fish hooks, implying that the jig heads had been in the environment long enough for their hooks to rust off, and c) mute swans that have been treated for lead toxicosis and then released, are known to have a high lead ingestion recurrence rate, which implies that the swans may have developed a taste for lead objects," (Caldwell 5).

----------------

There are more studies and more places to find information if anyone cares to look.

Right now I support lead jigs and I don't plan to replace mine but i would like to see more progress made towards finding a closer 1 to 1 replacement. I'm not sure what it will take to get to that point but the head in the sand mentality a lot of people have isn't going to get anything done. Remember change doesn't always have to be a bad thing.

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First of all, is there a credible source telling us that these lead weights or jigs are bad for the ecosystem of the lake? It sounds bad, but where is the data?

Second, is there a better alternative (remember the solution could be worse than the problem)?

Third, are the people that are pushing for a ban living by their words? Mainbutter have you got rid of all your lead?

There are some reports on the toxicity and affects of lead introduced to waterways, not hard to find 'em googling around.

Please note I did not say I support a ban, "banning" anything goes against my conscience, but I think we should support no-lead fishing just as much as we support CPR. I have gotten rid of all of my lead jigs, about a year and a half ago. I haven't found a suitable replacement yet I like just as well, but am always looking. Mostly that means that I haven't fished jigs the past two seasons, but that's fine since just about everything I've done lately has been lead-less spoons, spinners, and crankbaits.

I think it's completely unreasonable for anyone to think that american fishing can go completely lead-less overnight. However we can't ignore the fact that just about everyone who fishes is throwing around toxic heavy metals into the land and water we have so much fun on.

I just hate to see people who think that lead is completely harmless. It's easy to have that belief though because it's been so intrinsic to fishing and hunting for centuries.

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I have read studies before on this topic. They have their points, but like I have always said... There are probably more loons being killed by beginning duck hunters each year than loons killed by ingesting lead ever.

Everybody knows lead is a poison. Everybody knows that is deadly if eaten. Some topics brought up, mercury for one, have no relevance to lead fishing tackle other than the fact that they are both metals. Mercury in lakes and rivers comes from the atmosphere, not tackle boxes.

My main thing is this... loons grab gravel off the bottom to help digest their food. They dont target lead because the "developed a taste" for it. This is probably the dumbest thing I have ever heard. I guess that is why they had to say this evidence is not evidence, it's "circumstanial".

Maybe they should outlaw guns... Heck guns kill people!!!

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This argument seems about as valid as Shimano having to put a lead warning on there boxes... Wouldn't want anyone chewing on the brass gears which contain trace amounts of lead. This whole lead thing has gotten out of hand imo.

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My main thing is this... loons grab gravel off the bottom to help digest their food. They dont target lead because the "developed a taste" for it. This is probably the dumbest thing I have ever heard.I guess that is why they had to say this evidence is not evidence, it's "circumstanial".

Where is your evidence? If you want the other side to prove their statements I feel its only fair that our statements should have to pass the same test. Stating something as fact doesn't automatically make it true.

So far i have one study with circumstantial evidence on one side and one random guys "opinion" on the other side. Now which one deserves more credibility?

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