Little train that could

Discussion in 'All Catfishing' started by Mac-b, Mar 9, 2008.

  1. Mac-b

    Mac-b Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Messages:
    19,527
    State:
    North Caro
    Back in 2001, a group of catfishermen and women formed a catfish club (Carolinas Catfish Club) for the Carolinas. The purpose of forming this club were many, but the primary one was to get some type of state regulation to protect the catfish fisheries in North and South Carolina. Now, seven years later, we now have a 32" Ark. Blue regulation for two lakes in North Carolina, Badin and Norman. This two lake regulation is a small step in getting the Ark. Blue recognized as a trophy fish state wide.

    How did we as a club accomplish this task, the ways were many and under the leadership of a lot of people over the seven year period. First, we made it a part of our charter. Next we publicized the benefits of catching trophy cats and conserving their population. Then we assisted the University of Viriginia in a
    Ark. Blue catfish study that they wanted to conduct and it was conducted on Lake Norman, NC. Also, we let it be known that we were releasing (alive) all catfish in our news releases for all catfish tournaments. Seminars conducted by myself and others stressed the importance of releasing trophy cats for their reproduction capabilities and gene pool. Last, but not the least, we worked with our state DNR staff and invited them to our club meetings and other functions.

    I have presented this as a blue print for those wanting to get some protection for catfish all over the USA. The process is slow, but if you will get some folks together, best way is thru a fishing club, and then work with your local newspaper, TV and DNR staff you can accomplish similar results as those by the Carolinas Catfish Club.
     
  2. WylieCat

    WylieCat Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    7,175
    State:
    NC
    As the 2008 President of the Carolinas Catfish Club I want to thank not only the members, but also folks from around the country that e-mailed our commisioners in support of the legislation. The support was overwhelming in favor of the new laws. Many of you took the time to write, e-mail, and attend public meetings and I would bet it was a surprise to the folks at the state level that so many folks cared about the ol' catfish.

    As fishing clubs go we are unique.

    Most clubs are formed for one purpose and that is to hold tournaments. This holds true for most other clubs for largemouth bass, striper, and crappie. Our club is different in that we are more about education and protection of the species we pursue. Sure, we have three club tournaments a year, but the majority of time is dedicated to helping any angler catch fish, not just tournament anglers.

    Some folks don't have an interest in attending a club meeting if tournaments are not involved. We have former members that no longer attend because of this. There are however many new folks that are involved that enjoy the format, and in the opinion of many, more folks potentially will be involved than if we were just a tournament organization.

    I say all this because the regulation changes that have now been passed were the first statewide changes we have taken on as a club. It was a collective effort of our members and folks from around NC and the country in supporting our efforts. In a sense it was a small step, but in reality it was a monumetal change in the direction and mentality of our state toward the harvest of catfish.

    Obviously it does not end here and we have only scratched the surface. There are so many more things we need to address and look at. As with this new law it will take time to make the changes happen, but working together we can accomplish a lot.