Home » Opinion » Editorials
Protecting loons: Who bears the cost?
The fishermen don't mean to kill the birds. They are only trying to catch fish, usually bass. They weight their lines with sinkers and jigs made of lead, as they've always done. Loons eat the lead and don't last long after that.
That is why the Loon Preservation Committee and other environmental groups want to ban the sale and freshwater use of lead sinkers and jigs that weigh less than one ounce. The state has restricted lead sinkers, but not jigs, and loons are still dying.
Angler organizations say banning the lead products will cost fishermen tons of money. They say, too, that loon populations are rising, so there is no problem. But there is a problem.
Loon populations, declining for a long time, have risen in recent years. That is not because lead suddenly stopped being a threat. It is because the state and volunteer organizations like the Loon Preservation Committee have worked very hard to rebuild the populations. One fishing season in which a lot of loons happen to swallow lead can wipe out years' worth of work by the state and volunteer groups.
Lead sinkers and jigs are cheap - for anglers. They are very expensive for loons. The birds used to bear all of that cost, but preservationists and Fish and Game have eased the burden. Together they pay a heavy cost so that fishermen can save a little money on weights and jigs. It seems to make more sense to have the fishermen pay a little more for tackle rather than have so many people working so hard to keep that cheap lead out of the mouths of these cherished birds.
READER COMMENTS: 0
- Derry Early Education Program to relocate - 0
- Manchester panel OKs new academic standards, despite Common Core criticism - 2
- Nashua school staff see tests as key to tracking student growth - 0
- Two Manchester schools off 'priority' list - 0
- Nashua officials seek advice on issue of student cellphone searches vs. privacy - 9
- Manchester school district makes bid to run Job Corps center - 2
- NEASC votes to reaccredit Central High - 1
- Londonderry school policy updates sought - 0
- New schedule feature will provide Nashua students with opportunities - 0
READER COMMENTS: 0
- Another View -- Jayne Millerick: Dems scaring women by misleading them on contraception - 0
- Basket case: Saga of a supermarket - 0
- Patriots Notebook: Ongoing renovations in Foxborough - 0
- Three years later, investigation continues into homicide of Celina Cass - 0
- Nashua celebration in the works for Medal of Honor recipient - 0
- Fisher Cats down Senators in road trip opener - 0
- No water for Manchester sewer bill scofflaws? - 0
- New Boston mulch processing plant plans under review - 0
- Manchester Crimewatch: Defense attorney seeks home confinement for drug addict - 0
Market Basket walkout a future case study
UPDATED: Thousands of Market Basket employees rally; company board issues statement on purchase offer, reaffirms support for new CEOs
Basket case: Saga of a supermarket
Mother says Abigail in 'deteriorated' health