Don't "Modify" My Fish

Someone needs to tell the British Environment Agency’s (EA) head of fisheries that making fish a cinch to catch by breeding their natural instincts out of them does not create “more sport.” Then pat him on the back for doing something to protect wild trout from interbreeding with hatchery fish.

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  • Should’ve called this one ‘Fishing made easy for Idiots’. How sad. Or ‘The WalMartization of Fishing’ because it’s about quantity, not quality.
    Also, extremely doubtful that all the ‘treated’ fish are sterile. Invariably, some will be able to breed. Far better than the regular hatchery introductions, but certainly not 100% effective.

  • Martin Bowers

    I don’t think the fish are easier to catch because they’re stupid, they just don’t spend time migrating and focusing on reproduction. I imagine they might even be tougher to catch because they can become more selective since they spend more time eating.
    The article states that more sterilized fish were caught but it doesn’t speculate why. Maybe the sterilized fish grew a lot faster, suffered less predation, and took over the best lies where most of the angling was targeted. That doesn’t mean they were actually easier to catch. I would encourage anyone suspicious of the sterilized fish to look for some more information that just this high level newspaper article before passing judgment.
    The B.C. government has been stocking sterile triploid fish (XXX chromosome) in lakes for several years and they are very successful there. Many of the most fertile lakes do not have spawning streams so the larger stocked trout waste a good part of the year egg and milt bound. They don’t make good sport because they are skinny beat-up fish that waste all their time trying to find a stream or die trying to reabsorb their unused spawn back into the body. In a river it’s perhaps not quite as important but if the fishery managers decide it needs stocking I think the triploids a great idea. Large, tough to catch fish that take the pressure off the native / wild fish until that stock can recover, and then hopefully the stockers will all expire without reproducing.