The article on heritage trout is, of course, sobering. I am a brook trout fisherman, and to learn more about the troubles the heritage strains are undergoing is sad. I have to admit, though, that I would think that an article conveying the woes of Adirondack brook trout would not feature a fisherman killing a heritage-strain trout on the cover. It was a nice brook trout, and the way that Sam was handling it, there was no way that it could have been released without harm.
He was presumably fly fishing as he was wearing a vest with flies on it and had a fly rod in the boat. Fly fishing is generally assumed to be less harmful to fish, and they can presumably be released with less damage. So much for advocating for not overfishing the heritage strains.
I also thought to myself: Is it not contradictory to list ponds with heritage strains and hope that people will not go to them looking to do the same thing that Sam is doing in the pictures? I know it sounds picky, but I think that the pictures should have shown Sam doing the responsible thing: releasing the beautiful fish he caught so that the heritage-strain fish in that pond can reproduce.
Simon Gardner, Minerva
Editor’s note: Sam kept the trout.