Tag Archives: Outdoors

Survive the Sound.

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Biologists and conservationists constantly struggle with relating their data to a general audience.  The folks at Long Live the Kings, have gamified real-time fish tracking data on the steelhead running through Puget Sound, whose populations have declined dramatically over the past several decades.  Users “bet” on which fish will reach its spawning stream first, with proceeds going to benefit the nonprofit, which has spent the past three decades restoring native trout and salmon to the Pacific coast.  Sign up individually or create a team by May 6th to get in on the action.

Wednesday Night Ties: Henshall’s flies.

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The Johnny Appleseed of browns, brookies and rainbows had a less-than-secret obsession with black bass- largemouth and smallmouth, mostly. Born in antebellum Baltimore, he moved west to Cincinatti and then Wisconsin, where he made a home on Lake Oconomowoc, west of Milwaukee.  The lake became his adopted pen name as he wrote articles for national sporting magazines, while studying the behavior and reproduction of the bass that lived there- observations which would inform their culture, allow them to be propagated in hatcheries, and replenish stocks ravaged by pollution and market fishing.

He wrote The Book of the Black Bass, he wrote an autobiography- in which he spends practically no time describing his experience in the west, establishing the Bozeman trout hatchery and building the legendary Montana trout fisheries of today.

 

Maybe that tells us something.

Book Review: For the love of rivers.

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…so what is it you do, exactly?  Colorado State’s Kurt Fausch tackles the question in his book For the Love of Rivers.  In Fausch’s case, how aquatic communities of fish and invertebrates are structured, how they are linked to terrestrial ecosystems, and how humans alter those linkages.  It’s thoughtful, and messy- if scientists knew how to answer these questions they’d already be answered- and sometimes the solutions seem absurd, like fixing plastic greenhouses over creeks to understand the importance of streamside insects to native trout.  But understanding how these systems work helps us fix them when they break.  Fixing them when they break ensures our children have the same opportunities our parents provided us.  Fausch’s book is a must-read for those interested in field biology generally, for those interested in field biology as a career, and perhaps most importantly- as a primer in how to engage and interest the public in field research that contributes to the health of their environment.

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Last of the snow.

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March.

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Relax.

Slow down.

You’ve caught a couple fish

and all of a sudden you’re acting as though any of this matters.

It doesn’t.

Not a lick.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Vacillating.

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There’s a flock of twenty blackbirds high up in the locust tree, registering dissent with the sloppy wet snowflakes the size of one’s thumb.