I agree with this totally, signed sealed and delivered, added the link to a few other forums.
I have fished Nipissing for 20 some odd years.
Years ago the ministry asked the commercial fleet to no longer net during the spawning period on the north end of the lake, so the commercial fleet crossed the lake and asked for permission to net the French River. It was allowed to occur and for the next 5 years after this agreement it was all you could do to find fish in the river.
Luckily after the LACK of walleye was noticed the southern netting permissions were revoked and now the fishery is NOT WHERE IT USED TO BE but is recovering. No reason to net commercially in Nipissing, the commercial fleet have no regs no oversight and can do as they please, greed is the foremost runner for them and if Nipissing becomes a desolate fishery, not to worry, our GOV't will just subsidize them.
Why net Canadian fish, only to sell them to the south? Why are these ghost nets allowed to occur? Why do the individuals who loose the nets not have a financial responsibility or human decency to collect or pay a diver to recover the nets?
If I were to drive my car and park in in a parking lot and leave it there, would it not be towed and at my expense? Why is their garbage allowed to remain?
Sad part about ghost nets are as follows; they float to the surface, fill with live fish, the weight of the dead waste fish sinks them to the bottom, the fish rot, the net floats to the surface and so on and so on, hundreds if not thousands of wasted fish. Does it not state in the regulations that "if a fish is harvested and the meat spoils or is wasted that this is illegal?" So if my net sunk and killed a single (as in 1) fish and it went to waste, am I not allowing the flesh to spoil? Am I not breaking the law? Can I not be fined?
We are all equals here, quit with the "special privileges" or the "blind eye" tactics and lets start working together to maintain one of our most prized resources
Secondly on the ghost nets, years ago in a local derby a family of boaters/derby anglers where down-rigging. They unknowingly came over a ghost net, the riggers became caught in the net. The boat was moving forward and started to slow (the riggers were lifting the ghost net off the bottom due to the forward momentum of the boat). The boat stopped advancing and the back end of the boat was pulled under the water (the ghost net had been taken as far off the bottom until it had an anchor point the boats momentum had stopped, the net overtook the power of the boat and sunk the aft end), the boat was lost, the gear was lost, LIVES WERE ALMOST LOST. All because a blind one sided commercial fisherman decided to leave the nets and shrug it off as a loss. Yes the loss of desired game fish is a disgust. Does someone need to loose their life before the severity of this issue is seen?
For those of you who don't know about down-rigging it involves a large reel with a boom arm, the cable is 250 lb braided steel line that you attach a lead weight to (cannon ball).