Sunday, April 29, 2018

Florida Land-Based Shark Fishing - Progress!

From a presentation to the FWC - those Hammers are obviously moribund, or they could not be handled that way. Click for detail.


Finally at their last meeting, the FWC has taken note.
So far, the staff have continued to derelict their duties and failed to adequately protect their vulnerable prohibited Sharks by cozying up to the shore-based fishermen, by never enforcing their very own rules and by never following up on the numerous complaints (and evidence!) of illegal activities, and have instead continued to belittle the concerns of the public; but in view of the overwhelming evidence presented, the commissioners have now decided that it was high time to draw up unequivocal regulations to stop the shenanigans. 
Yes they will take some time to draft and implement - but here's to the staff taking note that the status quo has become unacceptable and starting to finally fucking do their bloody job; and to the shore-based anglers to fucking clean up their act in order to avoid a total ban of their activity!

Kudos to everybody involved.
But whereas some of the usual shameless self-promoters are already taking public victory laps (shame on you Angela - you know who you are!), the real heroes prefer to keep anonymous - especially one incredibly impressive gal who has been busting her ass setting up a citizen initiative and coordinating much of the concerted effort.
She writes,
You know why this campaign has been different and successful?

I didn’t just start screaming at FWC.
We respectfully communicated and I learned lots along the way.
I figured out how they were trying to handle the issue “education rather that regulation” and then spent 9 months on a daily basis illustrating to them why their approach wouldn’t work. I do know many people have submitted crap to the FWC over the years, that doesn’t do anything. We recognized this issue and immediately spent time and money to address the Commissioners at their meeting of July of 2017 =
within one month of starting our group, and at that time we asked the FWC Commissioners to put land based shark fishing on a future agenda.

Here is where the hard work starts though.
We still have so much work to do.
Yes indeed you do.
There are several topics requiring detailed attention i.e. a) blood baiting and public beach safety, b) gear restrictions, c) handling of prohibited species, d) prohibition of shark fishing from man made structures and finally, e) potential licensing and permitting, and there are already efforts underway to properly address each of them.

Want to help make a difference?
Should you live in Florida, have the required knowledge and skills and want to lend a helping hand, you will have plenty of opportunities - and with most good people wanting to remain anonymous: if you don't know whom to contact, best address yourself to the ASC who will undoubtedly point you in the right direction.

Wishing you the best of luck.
And remember: less talking more doing!

Oh and more good news: there will be no harvest of Goliath Groupers!

PS - Hannah Medd here: yes it has been a dedicated FEW, see her reply to Austin's comment!

No comments: