Fly Fishers' Waste

As my five-year-old sits beside me this morning tying flies, leaving orange marabou, yarn and snippets of thread scattered around my desk, I remind myself that he got his organizational habits from me. I also make a note to myself to have him pick up a piece of trash when we go fishing today.
One can say that the anglers who fish the bounty of Alaska’s Kenai also inherited their custom of leaving behind cast-off lead, flies, and assorted angling detritus. But the trash spun off by season of fishing is shocking. Jim Hasbrouck, regional sportfisheries research supervisor for the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, took only one hour on the banks of the Kenai to recover more than 3 pounds of fishing lead, bundles of monofilament, and more than 500 flies. “Extrapolated to cover both banks of the Kenai over the length of the river — if anglers are losing as much gear in other intensively fished parts of the river as they are here — the volume of lead accumulating in the river could easily reach to hundreds of pounds per year.” Craig Medred in the Anchorage Daily News.

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