News Releases

News Release - Manitoba

June 8, 2018

NEW RECYCLING EFFORT UNVEILED TO PROTECT WILDLIFE AND WATERWAYS

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`Clear Your Gear' Fishing Line Recycling Program Kicks Off Free Family Fishing, Free Provincial Park Entry Weekend

LOCKPORT—Recreational anglers are invited to enjoy the province’s annual free family fishing weekend, June 9 and 10, when anglers will not need a licence, but they are asked to be responsible in disposing of waste, in particular, fishing line, Sustainable Development Minister Rochelle Squires announced here today.

“Manitobans are hooked on fishing, and so are the tourists who are lured to visit our beautiful lakes and rivers, generating more than $200 million in direct and indirect impact to the economy,” said Squires.  “That’s a lot of lines in the water, and we want to remind and encourage all anglers to respect the beauty of our natural areas by safely placing trash and fishing line in proper receptacles.”  

This year, the province has partnered with TransCanada and the Wildlife Haven Rehabilitation Centre to set up specially designed containment units for anglers to dispose of used fishing line at popular angling locations, such as Lockport.  Monofilament fishing line can be detrimental to birds, fish and other wildlife if left on shore and in the water.  Even in a landfill, it can still be picked up or scattered by birds, so the Clear Your Gear program ensures fishing line gets properly recycled.

“As part of our commitment to environmental stewardship, we work to minimize our environmental footprint as we strive to meet the energy needs of North Americans,” said Carla Morris, director, Canada Gas Operations, TransCanada.  “We work closely with the communities where we live and work to ensure the environmental initiatives we’re supporting – whether financially or through volunteer efforts – are the ones that matter the most to them.”

“We have seen many fatal monofilament line injuries to birds in recent years and are excited see a project that will work to illuminate this problem,” said Zoe Nakata, executive director, Wildlife Haven Rehabilitation Centre.  “We are a proud partner in this project, working to ensure the safety and well-being of all wildlife in our province.”

Summer family fishing weekends have been offered since 1992.  On June 9 and 10, anglers will be able to fish without a licence provincewide, except in national parks where a federal licence is still required.  Access to provincial parks will also be free starting today through Sunday, June 10.

Anglers fishing without a licence this weekend will be allowed to keep a conservation licence limit of fish, which varies by species.  All other rules and regulations will apply, as outlined in the 2018 Manitoba Anglers’ Guide.  To obtain a copy of the 2018 Manitoba Anglers’ Guide, visit: www.manitobafisheries.com.

Boaters and watercraft users are reminded to do their part in preventing the spread of zebra mussels and other invasive species.  Watercraft inspection stations are up and running for the summer and are scheduled to be open Thursday through Monday for the rest of the open water season in Selkirk (Selkirk Park boat launch), Headingley (weigh station) and Eriksdale (PTH 6 at PTH 68E), Grand Rapids, The Pas and Swan River.  It is a legal requirement for all watercraft, which includes canoes, kayaks, and Jet Skis, to stop at watercraft inspection stations when they are open.

Before leaving any body of water, take the proper steps to:

  • clean and remove aquatic invasive species and aquatic plants from the watercraft, trailer and all water-related equipment before leaving the shore;
  • drain all water from the motor, bilge, bait bucket and any compartments before leaving the shore;
  • remove all drain plugs before transporting watercraft over land;
  • completely dry all water-related equipment and any hard-to-drain compartments that have contacted the water with a dry towel before placing into another water body; and
  • dispose of all bait used in a control zone water body in the trash prior to leaving the shore.

For more information on invasive species, visit www.gov.mb.ca/stopthespread/ais or call (toll-free) 1-87-STOP AIS-0 (1-877-867-2470).

For more information on watercraft inspection station schedules, visit:
www.gov.mb.ca/sd/waterstewardship/stopais/watercraft_inspectors.html
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