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  #1  
Old 09-26-2017, 05:03 PM
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Exclamation North Central Native Trout - Proposed Angling Closures

There is a new survey on the APE website.

Be sure to take the time to have your voices heard ... not that it will probably change the outcome but you never know!

https://talkaep.alberta.ca/north-cen...gling-closures
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  #2  
Old 09-26-2017, 10:58 PM
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saw it long ago finally made a better plan
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Old 09-27-2017, 10:11 AM
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What are everyone's thoughts on the proposed total closures for a 5-year period on the selected watersheds?
Personally, I've only fished the Berland and Kakwa watersheds (almost 15-20 years ago) but back then the grayling were seemingly plentiful. I would support the closures there to help fish populations recover, just hoping it would be successful
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Old 09-27-2017, 12:16 PM
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This is ridiculous. I don't believe these waterbodies are in rough shape(at least not according to AEP's own reports...) and closing these rivers only significantly increases the pressure on other rivers...

Then once reopened everyone will pounce and fishing pressure will be 4 times what it regularly is now...

Leave all these rivers open. Heck reopen the Pembina too. Angling pressure needs to be spread out not concentrated.

Hopefully other anglers all tell AEP to get lost with this idea. Only a matter of time before all the rivers are closed and there are tags for all pike and walleye etc.

Fishing is fine in the province, we don't need to try and improve it by these ridiculous methods that won't work(and which will just lead to permanent closures).
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Old 09-27-2017, 01:43 PM
ecsuplander ecsuplander is offline
 
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Not sure about that. From personal experience I have been fishing Lac St. Anne for 15 years. Historically a great walleye lake. Then overfished, walleye were hard to come by. Zero harvest- walleye came back. Now we have limited harvest of walleye on the lake. Seems that in this instance it worked. Not sure if this is applicable to these waterways or not.
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Old 09-27-2017, 02:08 PM
McLeod McLeod is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RavYak View Post
This is ridiculous. I don't believe these waterbodies are in rough shape(at least not according to AEP's own reports...) and closing these rivers only significantly increases the pressure on other rivers...

Then once reopened everyone will pounce and fishing pressure will be 4 times what it regularly is now...

Leave all these rivers open. Heck reopen the Pembina too. Angling pressure needs to be spread out not concentrated.

Hopefully other anglers all tell AEP to get lost with this idea. Only a matter of time before all the rivers are closed and there are tags for all pike and walleye etc.

Fishing is fine in the province, we don't need to try and improve it by these ridiculous methods that won't work(and which will just lead to permanent closures).

You are bang on... First of all they NEVER due any habitat restoration so that is a load of crap..

20 years ago we were telling them make all flowing waters Catch and Release except for Brook Trout and limited Rocky Harvest and close the Bull Trout water by Sept 15th.
If they close it for 5 years they may NEVER open it.
And look at the Lovett river they shutdown. Brook trout are multiplying and there has been no habitat restoration.
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Old 09-27-2017, 02:41 PM
SNAPFisher SNAPFisher is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RavYak View Post
This is ridiculous. I don't believe these waterbodies are in rough shape(at least not according to AEP's own reports...) and closing these rivers only significantly increases the pressure on other rivers...

Then once reopened everyone will pounce and fishing pressure will be 4 times what it regularly is now...

Leave all these rivers open. Heck reopen the Pembina too. Angling pressure needs to be spread out not concentrated.

Hopefully other anglers all tell AEP to get lost with this idea. Only a matter of time before all the rivers are closed and there are tags for all pike and walleye etc.

Fishing is fine in the province, we don't need to try and improve it by these ridiculous methods that won't work(and which will just lead to permanent closures).
Agree, 100%. That is how I answered the survey as in not in favor of.
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Old 09-27-2017, 02:55 PM
SNAPFisher SNAPFisher is offline
 
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Originally Posted by ecsuplander View Post
Not sure about that. From personal experience I have been fishing Lac St. Anne for 15 years. Historically a great walleye lake. Then overfished, walleye were hard to come by. Zero harvest- walleye came back. Now we have limited harvest of walleye on the lake. Seems that in this instance it worked. Not sure if this is applicable to these waterways or not.
Good point. But this is different in terms of the types of water bodies that are fairly easily impacted streams and rivers, and, it looks more like replacement of non-native species with native ones.

Just take the Ram River for instance. Anyone on hear think that cutthroat should be removed and bull trout and rocky whites should be re-established?

For me, this is a great cutties fishery and I have zero interest in seeing change from that. I know of enough great bull and white fisheries that I do not see the need for another. Besides, it sounds like a cuttie success story to me. And if it ain’t broke….
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Old 09-27-2017, 03:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ecsuplander View Post
Not sure about that. From personal experience I have been fishing Lac St. Anne for 15 years. Historically a great walleye lake. Then overfished, walleye were hard to come by. Zero harvest- walleye came back. Now we have limited harvest of walleye on the lake. Seems that in this instance it worked. Not sure if this is applicable to these waterways or not.
Ste. Anne was never closed like what they want to do with these rivers.

These rivers are for the most part catch and release already.

I also bet you when they shut Ste. Anne, Pigeon and lots of these other lakes to retention they ended up wrecking a bunch more lakes by overloading them with pressure...

Gotta think of all the consequences of these actions. It started with the Pembina, now they want to do Kakwa, Berland, Clearwater and Ram. Next year they will add more... And soon they will all be closed... Meanwhile habitat destruction due to commercial practices will continue as well as other situations that affect these rivers much more then the C&R sports fishermen...

I am only ok with fisheries closing waterbodies if it is to protect a population of a species. Like what they do at Primrose for walleye, Job for cutthroat and Pinto for bulls. The rest of the waterbodies they can manage using either varied retention or C&R, if a river can't handle the C&R pressure then the fishing success will drop and people will go elsewhere giving the river time to recover. I have seen this on the walleye stocked lakes in SK where locals jump from lake to lake as they recover and crash due to over harvesting.

Anglers need to remember that fishing quality is not the biologists or AEP's primary concern. They having been pushing their limits these last few years and we need to keep them in check in situations like this.

What AEP should do is start fixing up some of these rivers. Start rebuilding or adding spawning and overwintering locations. Fix areas damaged by floods and commercial activities etc. Back in the day fisheries used to do a lot of that kind of stuff but not anymore.
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  #10  
Old 09-27-2017, 04:56 PM
wind drift wind drift is offline
 
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I think some folks might have not read the fact sheets for the individual watersheds. It's not just about fishing closures, but also about dealing with some habitat issues, like bad culverts and OHV effects. The fact sheets have info about management actions and next steps.

http://aep.alberta.ca/fish-wildlife/...-recovery.aspx
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Old 09-27-2017, 05:16 PM
slough shark slough shark is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ecsuplander View Post
Not sure about that. From personal experience I have been fishing Lac St. Anne for 15 years. Historically a great walleye lake. Then overfished, walleye were hard to come by. Zero harvest- walleye came back. Now we have limited harvest of walleye on the lake. Seems that in this instance it worked. Not sure if this is applicable to these waterways or not.
Huge difference between closing a body of water and making them catch and release. Most guys are ok with catch and release at least on native trout, this is about shutting them down to angling (likely for more than 5 years) governments don't reopen things all that often unless things become an issue which rarely happens with fish
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Old 09-27-2017, 05:41 PM
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Originally Posted by wind drift View Post
I think some folks might have not read the fact sheets for the individual watersheds. It's not just about fishing closures, but also about dealing with some habitat issues, like bad culverts and OHV effects. The fact sheets have info about management actions and next steps.

http://aep.alberta.ca/fish-wildlife/...-recovery.aspx
Yes read the reports.

Lets use Kakwa as an example.

Kakwa is a decent size river system with very limited access. In their report they say it is being threatened by catch and release and poaching. They also say the bull trout are at a moderate risk of extirpation.

Based on what data???

The last report I can find is the 2012-2017 bull trout conservation management plan which references 2006 data(nice recent data there guys) and states the bull trout population is stable and shows population estimates almost doubled from 1997 to 2006.

http://aep.alberta.ca/fish-wildlife/...gementPlan.pdf

So where is the data that supports this made up claim that the bull trout have gone from stable and an increasing population to all of a sudden at risk to extirpation?

At least they are going to finally do another electro fishing and population estimate next year. Maybe they should wait and do that first before they make the decision to close it??? Or would that make too much sense?

If it is only C&R mortality and poaching that is the issue then the solution seems very simple.

A) Do the electrofishing and check on population to see if it is still doing well or if there actually is some sort of issue that doesn't agree with the last decade of improving fishery.
B) Increase enforcement presence to decrease illegal poaching.

Don't lash out against the C&R fishermen that do nothing wrong...

Or maybe I am wrong about Kakwa and the bull trout aren't the problem. Probably the grayling they are worried about, maybe because of an increasing unchecked bull trout population...

But yeah probably the C&R fishermen that are the problem...
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Old 09-27-2017, 07:53 PM
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Originally Posted by RavYak View Post
Yes read the reports.

Lets use Kakwa as an example.

Kakwa is a decent size river system with very limited access. In their report they say it is being threatened by catch and release and poaching. They also say the bull trout are at a moderate risk of extirpation.

Based on what data???

The last report I can find is the 2012-2017 bull trout conservation management plan which references 2006 data(nice recent data there guys) and states the bull trout population is stable and shows population estimates almost doubled from 1997 to 2006.

http://aep.alberta.ca/fish-wildlife/...gementPlan.pdf

So where is the data that supports this made up claim that the bull trout have gone from stable and an increasing population to all of a sudden at risk to extirpation?

At least they are going to finally do another electro fishing and population estimate next year. Maybe they should wait and do that first before they make the decision to close it??? Or would that make too much sense?

If it is only C&R mortality and poaching that is the issue then the solution seems very simple.

A) Do the electrofishing and check on population to see if it is still doing well or if there actually is some sort of issue that doesn't agree with the last decade of improving fishery.
B) Increase enforcement presence to decrease illegal poaching.

Don't lash out against the C&R fishermen that do nothing wrong...

Or maybe I am wrong about Kakwa and the bull trout aren't the problem. Probably the grayling they are worried about, maybe because of an increasing unchecked bull trout population...

But yeah probably the C&R fishermen that are the problem...

Your quest for more data is legitimate, but won't be attained on this forum. Talk to the area fish bio.
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  #14  
Old 09-27-2017, 08:26 PM
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Your quest for more data is legitimate, but won't be attained on this forum. Talk to the area fish bio.
I am not here for data. I am here to inform others that AEP doesn't have data... They don't do their due diligence, instead they just decide what they want to do and do it and try to spin off surveys like this so they can say the people agreed with their plan...

Here is a great blog post on this subject and survey by Dave Jensen. Most will know he is a very involved individual in fisheries and he calls it exactly as it is...

http://flyfishalberta.com/jensenflyf...-trout-survey/


I strongly implore that anyone filling out this survey say no to the 5 year closures.

The other regulation changes they propose can be answered either way as most of them are bordering on meaningless(primarily changing whitefish retention from 5 to C&R and other little changes like that) but the closures absolutely have to be rejected or they will continue to close more and more waterbodies every year just as they have with walleye and now wanted to do with pike as well(as was hinted at in their last survey).
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Old 09-27-2017, 09:13 PM
wind drift wind drift is offline
 
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There's contact information for those that have concerns on the topic. Use it. It's an open invitation to have a conversation, which is, for some clearly passionate individuals, just what is being asked for.

Last edited by wind drift; 09-27-2017 at 09:19 PM.
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Old 09-27-2017, 10:10 PM
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Originally Posted by RavYak View Post
This is ridiculous. I don't believe these waterbodies are in rough shape(at least not according to AEP's own reports...) and closing these rivers only significantly increases the pressure on other rivers...

Then once reopened everyone will pounce and fishing pressure will be 4 times what it regularly is now...

Leave all these rivers open. Heck reopen the Pembina too. Angling pressure needs to be spread out not concentrated.

Hopefully other anglers all tell AEP to get lost with this idea. Only a matter of time before all the rivers are closed and there are tags for all pike and walleye etc.

Fishing is fine in the province, we don't need to try and improve it by these ridiculous methods that won't work(and which will just lead to permanent closures).

Preach it... we are loosing our fishing freedom and opportunities! Nothing they do is really helping the whole province. Fishing is so limited already and the more you decrease fishing locations the pressure increases exponentially on the others.
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Old 09-27-2017, 11:31 PM
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I'll also emphasize RavYak's point. Have a read please, and consider carefully what AEP is doing:

http://flyfishalberta.com/jensenflyf...-trout-survey/
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Old 09-28-2017, 06:38 AM
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Does anyone know where they planning on closing the berland up to?
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Old 09-28-2017, 07:01 AM
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Does anyone know where they planning on closing the berland up to?
Can see it in here, everywhere upstream of Beaver Creek.

http://aep.alberta.ca/fish-wildlife/...Aug15-2017.pdf
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Old 09-28-2017, 08:50 PM
dbaayens dbaayens is offline
 
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The following comment was to Dave's letter. I edited my comment a bit, but I want you folks to see my reaction because not providing us with data that supports a closure is unacceptable... if I didn't know better, I might think oh I trust fisheries workers and I support native fish conservation so yeah, for sure, do what you need to do... I might be supportive in the Berland because I don't know anything about it, but when I have fished a river for almost 40 years and it's the best it's ever been and getting better with a wide range of size classes, I'm not taking your word for it and I NO LONGER TRUST YOU. Ask a hell of a lot of questions guys! As far as OHV crossing problems, no kidding, quit wasting your time inventorying them, select a vulnerable watershed and fix them for god's sake... fix the habitat, trout can handle C&R.

I read in part of the North-Central Native Trout Survey Info that C&R has been ineffective. ARE YOU KIDDING ME! The fishing out west has improved astronomically over what it was. As a former fisheries worker I can tell you without a doubt they are dead wrong in at least one of the watersheds... it has done nothing but improve and it is still getting better. I expect I have more fisheries inventory data stored in my head from this year than the department has acquired and my accounts absolutely do not suggest closure to trout fishing is remotely necessary. Why the hell would you limit recreational opportunity in Clearwater County, for no good reason, when they are looking to boost the economy in any way they can. I've responded to the North-Central Native Trout survey and have asked them to personally reply to me. I am ****ed off... I question their methodology in a number of respects. First of all, why the hell are you asking anglers to agree to closures when you are providing us with zero data to make an informed decision or a forum to ask questions. Ridiculous!!! I'm not at all interested in being stopped from enjoying a river because someone just says so, especially, when I see a completely different picture.
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Old 09-28-2017, 09:36 PM
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I was just chatting with a buddy that has some inside information on this matter and he confirmed most of my thoughts about this situation.

Angling pressure has had little effect on many of these areas. The Clearwater had massive flood damage in 2013 and the Ram and Kakwa see limited fishing pressure due to tough access. Most of these rivers still have significantly better fishing then they have in recent years/decades and there is no reason for them to be closed.

The reason that angling closures have been proposed is because it is the easiest and only cost free avenue that makes AEP look like they are taking the proper steps to improving these waterbodies/fisheries... Fixing damaged habitat, improving spawning and wintering locations, fixing culverts etc all costs money but fishing bans are free... Sure they don't solve anything and they will create other issues but like in all politics the politicians need to pretend they are getting stuff done hence why these closures have been proposed...

I highly encourage everyone to register and vote no to these river closures. We didn't get a say on the Pembina closure(not that I was aware of anyways) but we can have our voices heard on these proposed closures. If we don't sway their minds then almost guaranteed there will be more closures in the coming years especially when the fishing pressure doubles and triples on the few remaining open bull trout rivers etc...

If you have direct knowledge of these fisheries or other thoughtful incites on why these bans should not happen then also email John Tchir at john.tchir@gov.ab.ca. I am told he is the man calling the shots on this program so we need to call their bluff and demand data to back up these closures and proof as to why fishing closures are the best and only way to improve these waterbodies. Fishing closures should be a last resort, not the first remedy tried...
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Old 09-28-2017, 10:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RavYak View Post
I was just chatting with a buddy that has some inside information on this matter and he confirmed most of my thoughts about this situation.

Angling pressure has had little effect on many of these areas. The Clearwater had massive flood damage in 2013 and the Ram and Kakwa see limited fishing pressure due to tough access. Most of these rivers still have significantly better fishing then they have in recent years/decades and there is no reason for them to be closed.

The reason that angling closures have been proposed is because it is the easiest and only cost free avenue that makes AEP look like they are taking the proper steps to improving these waterbodies/fisheries... Fixing damaged habitat, improving spawning and wintering locations, fixing culverts etc all costs money but fishing bans are free... Sure they don't solve anything and they will create other issues but like in all politics the politicians need to pretend they are getting stuff done hence why these closures have been proposed...

I highly encourage everyone to register and vote no to these river closures. We didn't get a say on the Pembina closure(not that I was aware of anyways) but we can have our voices heard on these proposed closures. If we don't sway their minds then almost guaranteed there will be more closures in the coming years especially when the fishing pressure doubles and triples on the few remaining open bull trout rivers etc...

If you have direct knowledge of these fisheries or other thoughtful incites on why these bans should not happen then also email John Tchir at john.tchir@gov.ab.ca. I am told he is the man calling the shots on this program so we need to call their bluff and demand data to back up these closures and proof as to why fishing closures are the best and only way to improve these waterbodies. Fishing closures should be a last resort, not the first remedy tried...

I gave them my compiled two cents from this forum on the survey.


Closing fishing will not fix the problems that are listed as causes. If sedimentation is a problem then STOP forestry and industry in the region! Everyone knows sedimentation is far worse for fish populations than catch and release fishing. The Alberta Fisheries has to STOP choosing industry over sport fishermen. You are using us as an excuse, a scapegoat with no good evidence. You have NO science to back up your claims! If you do lets see it. Most people who fish these regions know that these streams have better fish populations then they have in many years. Closing these fisheries will just put more pressure on others. You close fisheries and never open them again. I know how it goes. Its all lies... We're not the problem so stopping us will not change anything. If in five years you re evaluate and nothing has changed... then you say it must remain closed to fishing. WHY??? it didn't help in the first place because you never clued in at the start to realize and correct the actual problem. You really need some scientists who can do route cause analysis and get to the bottom of the problem and fix it rather then just Pulling Out the BAN HAMMER, because it's the easiest, cheapest and most pathetic thing to do.
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  #23  
Old 10-13-2017, 01:47 PM
jasonrpeck jasonrpeck is offline
 
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An incredibly thoughtful response. Please read.

http://flyfishalberta.com/jensenflyf...ng-mgt-survey/
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Old 10-15-2017, 11:00 PM
AvgCanadianJoe AvgCanadianJoe is offline
 
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While I had other things to do this evening, seeing this thread and reading the proposed changes (along with the fact-sheet) made me quite angry. I hadn't realized that this survey was open yet - perhaps the email notification went into my junk mail .

I have attached my reply below. I am curious if any of you feel like I do regarding AEP as of late - that they do not listen to or care about the hunters and anglers of the province.

Further, I would like to know if any of you AO Forumites feel like I am off base in what I have written.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

It is no secret that the hunters, anglers, and back-country users of Alberta deal with a tough and changing situation in the province. The human population is still booming (despite unstable economic conditions) and the pressures on our rivers, streams, and public lands are unprecedented. While the socially and environmentally conscious members of our hunting and angling community are cognizant of this, they also recognize that legislation and further regulation may not be the best answer for a problem that requires a complex and multi-generational solution. The solution to this problem is not to simply close fishing, but it may include: a change in fishing and harvest regulations, a change to access regulations, environmental protection measures, environmental reclamation measures, and most importantly, education, public consultation, and stakeholder buy-in.

Conservation is a key principle for any member of our community. It is why we value the hunter education system, it is why we teach and mentor young people, and it is why we are willing to pay the increased cost of hunting and angling in this province. There is no other group in Alberta that puts financial resources into what they believe in like the outdoors-men and women of the province. The dollar for dollar figures are staggering when you examine what the members of our community are willing to pay for something like the cost of licensing alone. Further staggering is the mismanagement of these funds at the hands of AEP; essentially misleading the licensee with where the money goes (e.g. the livestock predation repayments taken from a portion of licensing profits).

It is admirable that AEP is considering doing anything regarding trout species in the Eastern Slopes, but again the approach is boorish and abrupt. This is the third poorly planned and rolled out initiative by AEP in recent memory (the first being the Caribou Management Plan and the second being the Bow River Access Plan). When will AEP realize that the best way to solve tough conservation issues is to work with the stakeholder and user groups from the outset and not against them? Immediately, when an angler that frequents these areas reads the proposed changes, they are put on the defensive (even objective and open-minded ones). Proposed changes like this automatically threaten the idea that AEP values the angler and further, values the right of the angler to access and recreate on public lands, the tradition of the pursuit of angling, and the responsibility of the angler to conserve Alberta’s wild places. It should be noted that these same rights, traditions, and responsibilities are taken very seriously by the anglers of the province.

While I am not a member of any fish and game or outdoor association it is undeniable the good that those type of organizations do for our provincial wildlife. Why isn't AEP trying to engage these type of organizations on this issue? Historically, as outdoors people in Alberta, we have seen the work they do and we all benefit from it (members or not). Whether it is the Raven River initiative (ACA, Trout Unlimited, AFGA, etc.) or public land preserved for public use by the ACA (e.g. the "Buck for Wildlife" program - admittedly, ran by the old Fish & Wildlife), the work they do is meaningful conservation aimed towards preservation and utilization by Alberta's people. It is absolutely crucial that AEP gets involved with these organizations; they have the ear of the users and can generate a powerful force for conservation, education, and meaningful action.

In summary, the anglers of the province expect more from AEP than this proposal and survey. There has to be a better solution; a solution rooted in science that also respects and protects the rights, traditions, and responsibilities of the anglers of the province. It is absolutely crucial that AEP solves this problem the right way as it will serve to set a precedent for future cases.

Whether it be harvest limits, controlling disease, or removing invasive species (e.g. carp), solutions must be arrived at through collaboration, consultation, and cooperation if they are meant to be impactful.
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Old 10-19-2017, 12:42 PM
SNAPFisher SNAPFisher is offline
 
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Hey all,
Just bumping this thread up as the "due" date is tomorrow, 4:30 p.m. for responses. I hope you all got your thoughts in.

One more struck me when reading the Pike Management framework, if the a 5-year closure is proposed, they have effectively silenced one of their most valued input / information sources - i.e. anglers. And, we know that many of us might not even return to said fisheries after the 5 year ban. So likely longer...
I know this is obvious but just in case some of you have not responded and plan on it, just another way of saying "you silence us and you lose great information into how to manage the fishery after the ban...and beyond".
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