My son sent me an article this morning from the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC), London, Ontario. It is about the Osprey caught in fishing line that died. You need to read this. It isn’t long.
Most everyone that loves birds have, at one time or another, seen Ospreys, herons, and other water birds, even ducks and geese, get caught up in the trash that humans leave behind. In this instance, it is tonnes and tonnes of fishing line that is left behind. Line gets tangled on dead tree trunks and branches along the shore, fish break line and have hooks in their bodies which impact the Eagles and Ospreys. The birds take those fish up to their nests not knowing there is a hook in them (or they eat them). Anyone reading this blog has also held their breath or called the owner of the nest or the nearest wildlife rehab when they see a nest with line and hooks in it. You might remember CROW going up to the Captiva Bald Eagle nest to remove the fishing line from little Peace. There were more last year on other nests, some with hooks. It is terrifying.
My son is a conservationist. He travels the world to fish and he does not leave anything behind. Indeed, he helps lead an effort on the island where he lives to clean up the shore every year. As the CBC article points out there are two types of people who fish, the conservationists who are stewards of the wildlife and the water and the sometimes goes fishing on a Saturday fisher for something to do. The latter are more likely the ones to leave equipment behind, bait wrappers, line, hooks.
Want to help? Talk to anyone you know who goes fishing about the problems. Don’t attack them! You won’t get anywhere. Work your magic and tell them why it is important. Find examples and show them. I have posted some videos below the image of Mrs G. Educate young people who might be going fishing. Organize monthly shore clean ups! Get your local parks and recreation office to make permanent signs like the one above and post them where there are lots of leisure fishers. It won’t help with everyone but it will help. The fish will thank you but so will our beautiful Ospreys.
To go along with the article, here are three videos I found without any effort on YouTube. Two show the rescue of herons and one – the middle one – the rescue of an osprey caught in monofilament line.
Thanks for joining me today!