I often read articles about milfoil and lead sinkers affecting Maine lakes and wildlife, both important issues in Maine.

I also read about who should be responsible for cleanups.

Although state officials know about fishermen who participate in bass tournaments, especially people from out of state, they refuse to place the blame on those activities.

State officials refuse to talk about the millions of used and discarded sluggos and rubber scented fishing gear those bass fishermen use that end up at the bottom of Maine lakes.

The numbers are staggering and the effects are worse.

If you fish for trout on lakes where bass fishing is a current event, you will find most trout — especially brook trout — are full of those lures. The trout eat them but cannot discard them, so they grow skinny and unhealthy and will most likely die of starvation.

Recently, I caught a 17-inch brook trout with seven sluggos and two tube jigs inside.

Talking to fishermen in Maine, that is a very common occurrence.

Besides the pollution those lures create in Maine ponds and lakes, the damage to the trout population is extreme.

Someone at the state level better figure something out, like maybe banning non-biodegradable rubber lures and monitoring bass tournaments to assure fishermen are not throwing those things in Maine waters.

Maine biologists can confirm those allegations by questioning a few Maine fishermen. Maybe then, state officials will begin to address the problem.

Kevin Brewer, Sabattus

Editor’s note: Last year, the Legislature passed a resolve to require the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife to conduct a study on the use of rubber lures and nondegradable fishing hooks and lures and report its findings to lawmakers on Jan. 15. That report was presented to the Inland Fisheries and Wildlife Committee on Jan. 28; lawmakers accepted the department’s recommendation not to report out a bill on this topic.


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