It is Monday. That is really no big deal, sun comes up and sets on Monday just like it does any other day of the week. However, this Monday I could tell there had been “stuff” blow up on the interwebs over the weekend. Oh, it was “stuff” that I have blogged about before, more than once. But, obviously it is “stuff” that might be new to some folks. “Stuff” that others just plain do not care about.
What am I talking about?
Well, might as well hit it straight on: Two posts to the Nebraska Fishing and Hunting Bragging Board on Facebook included threatened or endangered fish.
I have told the story before about the two guys who brought a “state record” shovelnose sturgeon to the office to have it verified. I had a bad feeling as soon as they contacted me. They showed up, I opened the bag, took one look at their frozen fish and knew it was no shovelnose sturgeon. Yes, it was an honest mistake, I could see it on their faces when I told them. Regardless, they still got a visit from one of the guys down the hall who carries a badge. They did not get a state record.
You gotta know! I am going to come down on the side of the resource, on the side of the fish. There are no excuses. You have a responsibility to know the rules and that means you need to know some fish identification.
The fish in the first photo I saw was a lake sturgeon. Lake sturgeon are a threatened species in Nebraska, and pallid sturgeon (the fish in the second photo I saw) are endangered. Pallid sturgeon are federally-listed as endangered species. Neither species can be hung on stringers, as they were in the photos on Facebook. These fish must be released IMMEDIATELY.
One of the best aids for sturgeon identification that I have found comes from our neighbors in Missouri. Check this out, learn it! Know it! Sturgeon Identification.
Know this: Law enforcement is on Facebook, too.