Hello fellow anglers. I want to bring to your attention a bill that being proposed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Docket No. FSW-R8-ES-2012-0100).
As it reads, “We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, propose to list the Sierra Nevada yellow-legged frog and the distinct population segment (DPS … populations that occur north of the Tehachapi Mountains) of the mountain yellow legged frog as an endangered species, and the Yosemite Toad as an endangered species under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). The effect on this regulation would be to add the species to the list of Endangered Species and Threatened Wildlife under the act.”
Go to http://federalregistration.gov.a/2013-09600 to read the entire bill. I will warn you ahead of time, it is a long read. It is important, however, for all anglers and outdoor enthusiasts to read this bill. What it proposes to do other than to place these species on the endangered list is to close partial public lands and hiking trails, and to eliminate planting of non-native trout in rivers and lakes. This would include the planting of trout by the California Department of Fish and Game and private stocking permits in as many as 27 counties statewide. Alpine County is listed as one of the counties in this bill.
What could the extent of the depredation this would do to small communities and local businesses? If the Alpine County Fish Commission and the CDFG could not plant any of the rivers and lakes with trout and many of the back country was closed to public access, by this time next year, I feel that more than 60 percent of the resorts, restaurants and small shops would have to close their doors. Tourism is the heartbeat of smalltown USA, and that window is only a few months out of the year for most to survive.
I believe in protecting our wildlife. What I do not believe in is taking away public recreation.
Public comments must be received by March 11. Now is the time to make your voice be heard because there likely won’t be another opportunity. I urge you all to read the proposal carefully, and send a letter expressing your views on this important issue.
Send your letter to: Public Comments Processing
Attention: FWS-R8-ES-2012-0100 and FWS-R8-ES-2012-0074, Division of Policy and Directives Management,
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 4401 N. Fairfax Drive, MS 2042-PDM, Arlington, Va., 22203.
This proposal will have effects on waters from El Dorado, Alpine to Inyo and Mono counties. For more information, you can contact Jan Knight, acting field supervisor for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Sacramento Fish and Wildlife Service office, by telephone at 916-414-6600. Just remember that comments must be received at the Arlington office by March 11 to be recognized.
Good fishin’ and tight lines.