Letter to the MNRF on Ontario FMZ 20 Bass Season Proposed Changes
To whom it may concern,
We are writing to provide feedback on the changes MNRF is proposing for the bass season in FMZ 20 – primarily Lake Ontario and the Upper St. Lawrence River.
Blue Fish Canada is a registered Canadian charity and federally incorporated non-profit entity. Our mandate includes water quality, fish health and the future of recreational fishing. Blue Fish Canada promotes both catch&release best practices, and the sustainable harvest of fish based on scientific research.
In preparation of this letter Blue fish Canada reached out to the angling community in several ways. Our consultations included producing and broadcasting a 28-minute podcast featuring Blue Fish Canada’s president in conversation with Dr. Bruce Tufts from Queen’s University.
The podcast was shared with over 100,000 Canadians by numerous podcast broadcasters, cable and satellite TV, home smart speakers, and the podcast website: www.BlueFishRadio.com.
We also presented the proposals and Dr. Tufts research to the over 10,000 members of the Canadian Fishing Network.
Blue Fish Canada supports keeping opening season for Largemouth as the 3rd Saturday in June, and moving the opening day of Smallmouth to the first Saturday in July. We agree with keeping harvesting regulations the same for this summer / fall fishery.
Blue Fish Canada also supports a pre-spawn fishing season for both Largemouth and Smallmouth bass to begin in January and to end in early May. Further, we recommend that harvesting during the pre-spawn season be limited to either catch&release only, or the harvest of two fish based on a slot size to be scientifically determined. Both of these options for the spring pre-spawn fishery would help ensure large breeding fish remain close to their chosen nest sites leading up to and during the spawning season.
Thank you for your on-going commitment to further fine-tune the recreational bass fishery in FMZ 20 using the best available scientific research.