Sharing your catch of fish with friends and neighbors is a Maine tradition. You share your fish with people at your campground, in the camp next to yours, and back home. My Dad always looks forward to the few brook trout I bring home from camp just for him.
Five years ago Roxanne Quimby reached out to her major critics – including me - to talk about the future of her Maine lands. At that time I could never have imagined what I heard Roxanne tell Millinocket area residents on May 5.
She plans to donate a significant parcel of her land to Peaks-Kenney State Park in Dover-Foxcroft (where her children learned to swim).
She plans to donate a portion of her lands in that area to the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife to manage for remote wild brook trout ponds.
A sense of desperation – or at least frustration – was apparent from those who spoke on Thursday, April 28, in favor of LD 563, a proposed Constitutional amendment that would direct a small percentage of sales tax receipts to Maine’s Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife.
We’ll never hunt on Sundays in Maine. On April 25, the legislature’s Inland Fisheries and Wildlife Committee unanimously killed LD 910, sponsored by Rep. Stacey Fitts, a bill that would have authorized landowners to hunt on their own land on Sundays. It was the best Sunday hunting bill of this session.
The legislature’s Natural Resources Committee will examine vernal pools, and all of their mystery, on Monday, April 25. A bunch of bills scheduled for public hearing that day seek to roll back or eliminate protections for these fragile pools of critical wildlife habitat.
The legislature’s Inland Fisheries and Wildlife Committee surprised observers by spending more time debating a bill on ATV registration fees than the controversial proposal to allow game wardens to stop ATV riders without suspecting those riders of violating any laws. The committee acted on both issues on Monday, April 11.
The effort to establish a free saltwater angler registry has stalled at the legislature. A bill (LD 210) to create the free registry, sponsored by Senator David Trahan, seemed like a sure thing after it received the endorsement of Commissioner Norman Olson of the Department of Marine Resources.
The Maine Outdoor Heritage Fund Board met on Wednesday, April 6, with a substantially diminished pot of money to distribute in grants. This fund gets its money from an instant lottery game and the board awards the profits from the game to wildlife conservation and outdoor recreation projects twice a year.
The public hearing on two bills requiring some hunters using dogs or bait to have written or verbal landowner permission drew a large turnout of concerned sportsmen – and a few angry farmers and landowners – on March 21, but most did not return for the work session on the bills, held on April 4.