Welcome to the latest installment of the Wednesday Wake-Up Call, a roundup of the most pressing conservation issues important to anglers. Working with our friends at Trout Unlimited, Backcountry Hunters & Anglers, the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership, The Everglades Foundation, Captains for Clean Water, VoteWater.org, and Conservation Hawks (among others), we’ll make sure you’ve got the information you need to understand the issues and form solid opinions.
1. Dig Deeper into Everglades Restoration: Visit the “Follow the Water” Online Experience
Last month, we launched the film “Follow the Water,” which follows Simon and Hannah Perkins—cousins who are part of the third generation of the Perkins family to run Orvis—as they travel the length of the Everglades watershed, talking to scientists, conservationists, and fishing guides to see first-hand the work being done and to explore what the future may hold for the world’s largest restoration project. (See a trailer at the top of the page.) If you’ve seen the film and want to know more about the individual locations and issues discussed, check out our cool online experience, which offers in-depth information, bios of everyone in the film, and more. The full version of the film is there, as well.
2. EPA Considers Lasting Protections for Bristol Bay
It’s great to see conservation articles about Bristol Bay in mainstream publications, taking the message beyond the fishing community. Writing in Field & Stream, Travis Hall gives a great overview of the issues and what’s at stake:
According to Tia Shoemaker, now is the time to act if you want to see Bristol Bay’s wild salmon runs persist on the Alaskan landscape in perpetuity. “The Bristol Bay salmon run is like nothing else I’ve ever experienced,” she says. “The feeling of being on the ground when they’re super chromed-out and flooding into those tiny streams, and the bears are fishing right next to you, and they’re just as happy as you are and everybody is ignoring everybody, just trying to catch their fill…It’s magic. Everything relies on the salmon run, but once it’s gone, it’ll be gone forever.”
Click Here to Make Your Voice Heard: Tell the EPA that you support strong Clean Water Act protections for the Bristol Bay region
3. Call to Support the New Grasslands Bill
Anyone who cares about upland-bird hunting in the western half of the U.S. knows that habitat loss is the single largest threat to game-bird populations. According to Ryan Callaghan, writing on themeateater.com,
Over 70% of grasslands have disappeared thanks to agriculture, development, and invasive plants. Pheasant populations have dropped by 70%, bobwhite quail have declined by 83%, and the overall grassland bird population is down over 40%.
A new bill, the North American Grasslands Conservation Act, could be a huge positive step for grassland conservation efforts in the 21st century. Callaghan outlines what’s in the act, as well as how these measures could benefit bird populations in grasslands across the U.S.
4. Trout Unlimited “State of the Union”
The vast majority of trout anglers have heard of Trout Unlimited, and a good many of those are members of the organization. Your local TU chapter probably holds fundraisers, streamside-vegetation plantings, and river cleanups. But have you ever wondered what, exactly TU National does? Here’s a video of Chris Wood, President and CEO of Trout Unlimited, giving his annual “State of Trout Unlimited” speech in downtown Portland, Maine, during the first ever CX3 event held July 21-24, 2022. It’s a great way to gain a deeper understand of the main organization’s goals and successes.