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David Sparks Ph.d Axe to Grind
by David Sparks Ph.d, click here for bio

Program: Sportsman's Spotlight
Date: December 06, 2018

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Avid angler and conservationist, frequent contributor to the program Josh Mills, has a point he wants to make about the steelhead fishery. He has hard questions. “The State of Idaho, many think, has regressive management practices. They tend to manage only for angler opportunity and many think they have dropped the ball in terms of conservation measures. So when you have seasons that go well into April for some steelhead, you’re allowed to fish with bait, you are allowed to take wild fish out of the water which affects their spawning, fitness and mortality, I started to see a lot of people what really seemed to have a high level of entitlement. These are folks who are user groups on the river whether it be a guide or a license holder or someone who says they have been part of the steelhead culture their whole lives. This is just who they are and they should be allowed to keep fishing. We have to take a strong look at each other and stop the finger-pointing and ask, what is best for the resource if we want this to exist for our children. So I posted a question. What does the river or the fish owe you? They owe us nothing. You can’t make a claim that it’s state’s fish or it is one user group’s fish or it’s because I’m a guide or because I’m a sport or anything like that. In truth, we owe the river and those fish everything.

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