Simms joined other fly-fishing industry representatives and conservation groups at a recent workshop held by U.S. Fish and Wildlife to address concerns about aquatic nuisance species (ANS) in the Greater Yellowstone Area. It’s all part of an effort to raise public awareness of about the issue, which according to a recent press release may cost more than $100 billion per year. For more information about aquatic nuisance species issues, visit www.ProtectYourWaters.net.
Read the extended entry for the full press release.
Fly-Fishing Industry, Government Agencies Join Forces to Address the Increasing Threat of Aquatic Invasive Species
Public Awareness and Education Emerge as Top Priorities
October 18, 2006 (Bozeman, Mont.) – In an unusual fashion, representatives from the fly-fishing industry, government agencies and conservation organizations recently coalesced to address the mounting threat of aquatic nuisance species (ANS) in the Greater Yellowstone Area (GYA). While ANS management programs have evolved at the government level, this is the first time the fly-fishing business community, including Simms Fishing Products, Patagonia and other diverse stakeholders, formally gathered at the same table to tackle the issue.
Aquatic invasive species, which can be plants, animals or microbes, create nuisance situations in natural environments and typically do not have any natural predators or natural limitations to keep their populations in check. Once established, invasives can quickly and quietly devastate fisheries, lakes and rivers and put tremendous economic burden on local (and national) economies. In fact, the cost of invasive species (terrestrial and aquatic) in the United States currently amounts to more than $100 billion each year (http://protectyourwaters.net/). In spite of federal, state and local programs to address the broad and growing threat of ANS, public awareness and education is still waning.
Water recreation enthusiasts inadvertently spread aquatic invasive species by moving from one “infected” body of water to another without cleaning their gear. Simply by adopting some basic behavior changes, namely washing fishing/boating gear and equipment before going from one body of water to another, we can significantly limit the spread of invasive species.
Leveraging the diverse marketing and communication channels of fly-fishing industry leaders, participants in the recent US Fish and Wildlife Service-sponsored workshop committed to work together on a regional basis in an aggressive awareness campaign to educate the public about ANS and to encourage behaviors that help prevent the spread.
To learn more about aquatic invasive species and how you can help stop the spread, please visit http://www.protectyourwaters.net/.
Simms Fishing Products
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Fred Brooks, Backbone Media LLC firstname.lastname@example.org