Welcome to the latest edition of the Wednesday Wake-Up Call, a roundup of the most pressing conservation issues important to anglers. Working with our friends at Unlimited trout, Backcountry hunters and anglersThe Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership, The Everglades Foundation, Clean water captains, VoteWater.orgAnd Conservation Falcon (among other things) we make sure you have the information you need to understand the issues and form an informed opinion.

1. A major win for Atlantic striped bass populations

The last large spawning class of Atlantic striped bass is now protected from harvest.
Photo by Sandy Hays

Yesterday, the Striped Bass Committee of the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Management Commission approved two historic measures to preserve the productive 2015 vintage and increase the likelihood of striped bass stock recovery through 2029. First, the Board has initiated Amendment II, which addresses recreational fishing surpluses and getting the stock back on track for rebuilding by 2029. Second, the Board has enacted an Contingency Measure that imposes a 28- to 31-inch slot limit for the entire coast effective as soon as possible, but no later than July 2. Had the Board not acted today, the chances of population rebuilding due to the dramatic increase in recreational fisheries in 2022 would be only 11-15%. While there is still a long way to go for the Striped Bass to recover, the Board is strongly committed to protecting the species. Resolute action taken today can give hope to the entire Striped Bass community that this stock will recover and that the Board will make the difficult but necessary decisions to handling striped bass.

ASGA is incredibly grateful to the thousands of anglers, brands and fishing guides who have taken a stand for stock health and called the Stripe Bass Board to Action. The striped bass board did not need to make any changes today – today’s board action represents an incredible moment for the protection and effective management of the striped bass fishery.

“The conservation community has spoken and our voice has been heard,” said Tony Friedrich, vice president and policy director of the American Saltwater Guides Association, who had campaigned strongly for the changes. “Fisheries management is a long, tedious process. Science has told us that under the current system there is little or no chance of rebuilding the stock. We united the community with one voice demanding a brighter future for the resource and our children. Thank you to all the anglers, brands and guides who spoke out, and to the environmentally conscious members of the Striped Bass Board of Directors who voted for the health of the resource.”

Rest assured, the striped bass population is far better today than it was a month ago, but it is still a long way from being rebuilt and weeded. Watch the video at the top of this page for an explanation of the challenges facing the Atlantic striped bass and listen to the podcast below for a brief discussion of yesterday’s win.

Click here to follow the spend on the ASGA blog

2nd US Army Corps reconsiders rejection of permit for proposed pebble mine

Wake up call on Wednesday 030523 | AdayAwayFishingAdventures.com
This digital simulation shows what the foundation of the proposed Pebble Mine will look like if it receives federal approval.
Photo courtesy of United States Army Corps of Engineers

Back in January, we celebrated what appeared to be the ultimate demise of the Pebble Mine project when the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a final decision under Clean Water Act 404(c) banning the disposal of mine waste from the rivers and wetlands in and around near the Pebble deposit. But we knew this story would have many twists and turns. Yesterday happened exactly what we need to pay attention to:

The US Army Corps of Engineers will reconsider its decision to deny approval for the proposed Pebble Mine. In 2020, the Army Corps rejected Pebble’s application for a large open pit gold and copper mine upriver from Bristol Bay. But now the company has partially won its administrative appeal against this decision. The announcement suggests a barrier to the controversial mine isn’t as solid as opponents had hoped.

Luckily, the mine’s backers still have many other obstacles in their way, but we can expect them to continue removing these obstacles in the near future.

Click here for Alaska Public Media’s full story

3. Get city kids excited about trout

1684859932 632 Wake up call on Wednesday 030523 | AdayAwayFishingAdventures.com

Trout Unlimited is just one of many organizations implementing this Trout in the classroom (TIC) program in more than 5000 classrooms across the country. From kindergarten through high school, programs focus on the care of trout or salmon and their environment, expanding to include an understanding of their life cycles, and then moving on to water chemistry, hydrology, natural resource management, and watershed geology and ecology. But the exact curriculum is largely left to the educators.

New York’s TIC program is the largest in the country thanks to a long-standing partnership with the New York City Department of Environmental Protection. To educate New York schoolchildren about their drinking water, where it comes from and how clean it is, this team brings “Trout in the Classroom” to youth who have little or no access to nature.

Click here for the full story on TU.org