Saturday, May 10, 2014

Not Sure Why... (05/10/2014)

Hello Folks,

When I was a much younger man, I was pretty sure of most things happening in and around my life. But as I've aged and retired from my career, I often sit back and watch, read, or listen to things that just don't sit well with me. I used to be able to speak my mind or write about these things and not worry too much about confrontation. However, now I feel like I don't want to get into little "battles" over the really stupid stuff that have little to no effect on my life or the lives of my loved ones.

I was reading something today to my wife regarding an issue on the Susquehanna River and told her what I thought about the whole matter. She said to me that she did not understand why I don't respond with my thoughts. I told her that I just do not want to get into it with those who know very little about or are unwilling to listen to the history behind the subject.

You see, years ago I would have gone to battle over these things and not hesitate to express my thoughts or list a fact or two about the topic. Facts that seem to be missing in the logic of others. But at this stage in my life, I do not see the need or even the purpose to express my thoughts. I am not as eager to state the obvious only to have to defend the facts behind it. Instead, I would rather tell those who do not have the "background" to research the topic before passing judgement.

That being said, I would like to change the subject and wish my granddaughter, Macie, a very "Happy Birthday" from her Pop Pop and Grammy. We spent the better part of this afternoon at her 5th birthday party. It has been a long, long time since I was around so many energetic five year olds!

I enjoyed watching Macie opening her birthday gifts. She received some very nice presents, including clothing and a "Frozen" doll which is extremely hard to score. I was told at "Toy's 'R Us" that they were having an extremely difficult time receiving any "Frozen" movie items because the companies did not foresee the success this movie would have among children. Heck, even the song from the movie won a Grammy!!

I know that a five year old cannot appreciate the clothing she received today, but my daughter-in-law and son certainly can. From what I could see, she pretty much was outfitted for the summer months in less than the time it took her to unwrap each and every present.

Thank goodness the rain held off until my wife and I had gotten into my F-150 to head home... And boy did it pour.

We are currently sitting in the middle of the "Closed" bass season from the Sunbury Fabridam to the Holtwood Dam on the Susquehanna River. Despite the closure, there are many complaining that anglers are still on this stretch of the water fishing for bass.

I choose to follow the law and not fish for bass during this closed season. I look back at the history of this current "closed" season and can remember when we always had a closed season... up until the year 2000. At that point in time, the PFBC open the Susquehanna River to "Catch and Release" during the spawn due to no evidence supporting harm to fisheries during spawn.

But in 2005, the columnaris virus hit our young bass in the Susquehanna River and we lost many young bass. The bass were struck again in 2006 and 2007. We are still experiencing the effects of these losses. During that time, many anglers (myself included) and concerned citizens held dialogue with the PFBC during open meetings. These anglers expressed concern regarding the pollution factor involved in the Susquehanna River basin. Despite an agreement that pollution was a factor, the PFBC biologist needed more data.  It was at this time they started to collect data at monitoring stations set up along the Susquehanna River system.

It took eight years before the PFBC closed the main stem and lower Susquehanna River to bass fishing during the spawn (2013). This was to give our bass a better chance at succeeding during the spawn... It sort of goes against the reasoning that was used in 2000 to open the river to bass fishing during the spawn.

I know there are those who do not agree with this "closed" season, but we all have to accept the fact that our PFBC has made this regulation. Those who chose to continue to fish for bass in the "closed" sections of the Susquehanna and Juniata Rivers and 1/2 mile up other tributaries run the risk of being accused of breaking the PFBC regulations... I am not even sure how a conservation officer would prove this... but I guess that's just the way it is for now.

We definitely had the opportunity to express our opinions prior to this closure and I know that many anglers at those meetings thought "something was better than nothing" since the DEP and the PFBC could not come to an agreement on how to handle this major environmental issue.

So, here I wait until June 14, 2014 to begin fishing for bass once again. I may take a trip down to the Conowingo Pond where I can still legally fish for bass... or not. :)

Take Care and Be Safe!