There is an interesting article in the February 2003 issue of In-Fisherman magazine that should be read by all Michigan bass anglers. "The Science of Smallmouths: Key concepts in angling and fishery conservation" by Gord Pyzer. Enjoy!
I had an interesting talk with a Minnesota DNR fisheries biologist the other day. I plan on having a few more interesting talks with other parties in Minnesota and Ontario and maybe Illinois in the next few days barring communication connection problems.
I really wish I had enough time to pass on all the good stuff there is to read and respond to everything that may need a response.
Got to go for now. I have a lot more reading to do...
Forgot to mention - for you tournament anglers - just put this in the back of your minds: Connecticut and South Dakota have made exceptions for permitted live release tournaments during limited bass seasons and/or regulations. It can be done in some northern states.
But I personally will not mix up a legal catch and release bass season with regular tournaments too. I see legal catch and release as a possibility. Not sure how possible yet.
Exceptions for tournaments are not even remotely possible in Michigan as long as a very few in the MDNR feel the way they do along with their 'official arms length or greater' policy towards tournaments (especially bass tournaments, which is a shame and partly tournament anglers' faults) and this public negativity - some real, some perceived - towards tournaments. Maybe some day, but not in the near future.
If we try for both at the same time, we will fail for sure. We may never get any tournament exceptions in Michigan. I'm not going to waste any time on that for now. But I sure won't lose any either and I sure would like to see bass anglers in Michigan have as much opportunity as they can to fish for bass.
If bass anglers really want to support more advanced bass management that science may indicate would help some waters, they need to be prepared to support more complex management and regulations. You can't have better bass management with simple, statewide rules, ESPECIALLY if you enjoy tournaments and don't basically want the baby thrown out with the bath water. I will explain more soon. I promise.