Re: Re: protection of brown tro

Jack, Sobel (SOBELJ at dccmc.mhs.compuserve.com)
12 Feb 96 12:27:28 EST

Peter:

I think I agree with most of your comments on this topic. However, I
think eliminating brown trout from a suburban stream in a heavily
populated metro area would not be that hard nor expensive. Simply
allowing and promoting unrestricted fishing in the stream would likely
accomplish this. The second point is that, while there likely were at
one time native brook trout in the stream, I think they are likely gone
for good. Furthermore, even if you eliminated brown trout and
reintroduced non-native brookies from another area, the stream habitat is
probably altered irreversibly enough so as not to support them. The
brown trout's greater tolerance for environmental conditions has allowed
it to survive in such areas. In a highly altered and rapidly developing
area, stemming further loss may be more realistic than reversing 200
years of development damage. The question than becomes whether a
non-native, established salmonid filling the ecological role of an extant
native in an altered system is better than an altered system with this
vacant niche. I'm not certain I know the answer to this, especially when
much of the public, rightly or wrongly, worships the exotic. Finally,
while agree that altering habitat to protect the brown trout at the
expense of native fish is not a smart idea, protecting trout habitat in
an altered suburban stream which once supported native trout, if properly
carried out will likely benefit other native species as well.

Jack Sobel