Volume 3 2014
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“ Clean Boats, Clean Tournaments” Provides Plenty of Fish Eye Candy
A recently produced video offers complementary views of Great Lakes water bodies. There are scenes depicting attractive spots to hold fishing tournaments, along with the invitation to keep them free of aquatic invasive species. Then there’s a presentation of detailed, step-by-step instructions for setting up a boat-washing station to preserve uncontaminated tournament venues. Plus, the 10-minute video offers plenty of fish eye candy. Trophy-sized bass and walleye are scooped into nets, wrestled into boats and held aloft.
“Clean Boats, Clean Tournaments” acknowledges that fishing tournaments run the risk of spreading Eurasian milfoil that clogs the waters, spiny water fleas that stick to fishing lines, and zebra and quagga mussels that can out-consume species lower on the food chain and starve out sport fish higher up. There are plenty more examples of invaders, and a boat-washing station can neutralize them before they broaden their range and cause trouble.
The video invites youth and community groups to set up boat-washing stations at the competitive tournaments that make a circuit throughout the Great Lakes region each season. Using on-screen lists of equipment needed, video demonstrating specific actions, and animations of possible traffic flow patterns for vehicles, boats and trailers, any organization can easily learn how to host a boat-washing station that both protects waters and raises funds for the group.
Boat washing is a part of a successful project to affect the behavior of professional anglers to prevent the spread of aquatic invasive species. Project partners are Cabela’s Masters Walleye Circuit, the Walleye Federation, National Bass Anglers Association, the Bass Federation, the National Professional Anglers Association and Great Lakes Sea Grant Network.
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