DIF&W weighs ban on live-bait fishing on 16 lakes

Posted Sept. 20, 2012, at 9:38 a.m.

AUGUSTA, Maine — Maine wildlife officials may ban the use of live bait by ice fishermen on 16 northern Maine lakes to help protect wild brook trout.

Mike Brown of the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife said ice fishermen who dump leftover live bait fish through the ice and into a pond or lake may be introducing a non-native species. Those new species tend to crowd out the brook trout, one of the state’s most sought-after freshwater game fish.

The proposed rule was discussed Wednesday at the monthly meeting of the department’s advisory council.

The Portland Press Herald reports that some sport fishermen spoke out against the proposal. They say banning the dumping of live bait does not address the real problem — the intentional but illegal introduction of non-native game fish.

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