Christopher Smith

Congress Take Steps To Protect Anglers and Hunters

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fishing hooks

I thought you might be interested in some recent news over growing attempts by some groups to push the EPA into banning lead in fishing and hunting products.

This week, Congress took steps to protect hunters and fishermen from burdensome EPA regulations. There has been a growing push by conservationists to eliminate the use of lead in fishing and hunting which would increase the costs of tackle and ammo tremendously and reduce the choices and selection.

It would also likely put many tackle companies, fishing guides and independent shops out of business.

Read more about this legislation here:

The Republican-run House Appropriations Committee touts the provision as protecting Americans’ constitutional right to bear arms by fending off a government assault on ammunition as well as tackle.

The American Sportfishing Association advanced a practical argument against Washington’s meddling: “Non-lead fishing tackle products can cost from ten to 20 times more than lead products. Non-lead products may not be as available and most do not perform as well.”

Dale Denney, whose company Bearpaw Outfitters runs guided hunting and fishing trips in Western states, said the legislation counters “an overreaction in wanting to ban lead.” Link to original article

It was almost comical to hear Senator Chuck Schumer declare:

One of my great trips is to go for small-mouth bass in Lake Ontario every summer.

The American Sportfishing Association has a great review of this topic and discusses the concerns of some that waterfowl have become sick from ingesting lead from fishing tackle. To download the PDF go here: click

Based on this review, ASA found that insufficient data exists to warrant state or federal bans on lead fishing tackle. Further, the loon populations in the U.S. and Canada are stable and increasing throughout the majority of their range. In general, loon populations, as well as other waterfowl species, are subject to much more substantial threats such as habitat loss through shoreline development, disease, water quality issues and predators.

Depending on the alternative metal and current prevailing raw material costs, non-lead fishing tackle products can cost from ten to 20 times more than lead products. Non-lead products may not be as available and most do not perform as well. Mandatory transitioning to non-lead fishing tackle would require significant and costly changes from both the industry and anglers. Original article here

Remember as much as we all hate politics, all of us are a “special interest” and we have to constantly watch to make sure our lives aren’t overburdened by someone else’s agenda.