Wader Wash Stations at Missouri Trout Parks & MDC Open Forums on Diddymo

2010-10-16pic008(edited)(resized)It looks like the Missouri Department of Conservation is going to get serious on Diddymo in the State of Missouri.  In the coming weeks, they will be holding workshops throughout the state to discuss the effects of Diddymo and hopefully educate anglers about the topic (although I wonder why they didn’t reach out to some of the fishing organizations such as the various FFF clubs or smallmouth alliance clubs throughout the state, or have some of the meetings in more populated areas).  In addition to the meetings, they have installed wader wash stations at each of the trout parks, that are set to help rid your waders / wading boots of invasive species by using a 5% salt water solution.

As I have stated before on my blog, I am not 100% sold on the idea of banning felt soled boots.  To me, there are just way too many other places that could transfer invasive species.  I think the answer lies in angler education and understanding the effects of the invasive species and how to eradicate it once in the stream.  That being said, I did just order a pair of Korker boots with the kling-on rubber soles (both regular and studded), but I couldn’t help but order the studded felt too…..just in case and have been very proactive in the cleaning and drying out of my fishing gear when i go anywhere.

Here is what was written on MDC’s website regarding the wader stations and Diddymo:

One new feature at all four parks this year is the availability of wader-wash stations. These are baths with a 5-percent salt solution for boots and fishing gear. They are designed to kill the aquatic invasive species, Didymosphenia geminata. commonly known as Didymo. It’s less appetizing nickname, “rock snot,” captures its slimy experience and general undesirability.

Didymo is an invasive alga that forms dense mats on stream bottoms. It can become so thick that it disrupts natural food chains, making fishing impossible. Its arrival in trout streams around the globe probably is the result of its ability to cling to the porous surface of felt-soled fishing waders. Didymo is known to infest streams in 19 states. The infested stream nearest to Missouri is in northern Arkansas.

“We strongly encourage anglers to make use of the wader-wash stations to clean not only waders, but any fishing equipment that has been used in other states,” said MDC Hatchery Systems Manager James Civiello. “Anglers can unknowingly spread the microscopic alga on fishing gear, waders, and especially in any porous materials on wader soles.”

Civiello said anglers can help prevent the spread of rock snot by cleaning fishing gear and waders and drying them in the sun for 48 hours when moving between waters. They also can help by replacing felt-soled waders with rubber-soled ones.

You can also plan on attending one of the MDC Public Forums on Diddymo on the following dates:

  • Montauk State Park Seacy Building Tuesday March 15 at 6 p.m.
  • Bennett Spring State Park Bennet Spring Hatchery Building Monday March 21 at 6 p.m.
  • Sheperd of the Hills Hatchery Lake Taneycomo Table Rock Dam Dewey Short Visitor Center Saturday March 26 1 p.m.
  • Roaring River State Park Emory Melton Inn and Conference Center Thursday April 7 6 p.m.
  • Maramec Spring Park James Memeorial Library Meeting Rm. 300 w. Scioto, St. James Monday April 11 6 p.m.

You can read the whole article regarding Missouri Trout Parks opening day and trout fishing in Missouri, by clicking on this link.

–Matt Tucker

Missouri Considers Ban on Felt Wading Boots

2010-10-16pic010(edited)(resized)An article posted to the Columbia Missourian web site says the State of Missouri is considering a ban on felt wading boots; largely to follow what other states out West are doing.  On first thought, I want to applaud the state for some forward thinking as it relates to the Didymo issue.  But if we stop and think about it, felt soles aren’t the only issue contributing to this “rock snot” issue.  What is going to stop the algae from adhering to all the nooks and crannies that are in our wading shoes, or our waders around our gravel guards, or our nets.  The issue isn’t as simple as banning felt bottoms and the problem goes away.  The issue is angler education and how to rid a system of didymo once it is present and how to avoid incidental transfer on all the other items us fisherman take to the water with us.

I fish the Arkansas tailwaters quite a bit as well as Missouri waters, so I am one of the anglers that most probably has spread Didymo to a Missouri trout stream.  That doesn’t mean I did it on purpose.  I am actually really anal about cleaning my boots after I fish Arkansas and let them dry out (even have worn a different pair of boots in Missouri than in Arkansas on one particular trip when the two states overlapped).  All that being said, to me, banning felt isn’t the answer (I do think it will help, but my point is that it should stop there).  I didn’t wait for my waders to dry, I didn’t head to the nearest car wash and power wash the drift boat when I went from the White River to the 11pt river.  I simply didn’t think about it.  The article, however, is proof that we all need to.

I would love to know your thoughts on the topic; is banning felt the savior to the Didymo issue?  Drop a comment and let me know your thoughts.  You can a PDF version of the article by clicking here.

Fly Fishing Film Tour — Headed to Springfield, MO (Oct 14, 2010)

The Fly-Fishing Film Tour, yes…..that one, is headed to Springfield, Missouri thanks to the people at Recycled Fish and the Missouri Department of Conservation.  I learned of the possibility of this a couple of weeks ago, but was told to keep it on the down-low.  The official announcement will be made tomorrow, but above is the flyer that will be launched.  The show will be free, but will be limited to the first 150 people who sign up for it.  So act fast, and enjoy the show.

Tapam; A Fly Fishing Journey — Drake Video Award (Best Fishing)

Daniel Göz and Jan Bach Kristensen won top honors at the 2010 Drake Video Award contest during the Fly Fishing Retailers show in Denver earlier this month, by sharing the adventure of fly-fishing for tarpon out of float tubes…….freakin’ float tubes.  Seriously, this is some crazy good videography and the fish porn in it isn’t bad either.  Job well done to the both of them.  You can check out some of Dainel Goz’s photography and blog here and can see some of Jan Back Kristensen’s photography here, and had a write up back in March in an issue of This is Fly.  Both sites are definitely worth a look.

When Guiding Goes Gangster — Drake Video Award (Best Humor)

The Drake recently held its Drake Magazine Video Awards at the Fly Fishing Retailers show in Denver, and it looks like RA Beattie added another award with his short entitled “When Guiding Goes Gangster”, as it won “Best Humor” in the contest.  RA has a pretty good blog about the filming of it, the award, and a 7-11 trip after he won the award on his blog, which you can read by clicking here.  Anytime you can combine fly-fishing and Snoop you know something good will come of it.