If you are going to take your dad out on a fishing trip this Father’s Day weekend, or he is thinking of going fishing solo or with friends, see if you can figure out how to make his adventure a “low plastic impact” one. It’s amazing to think about the amount of recreational fishing gear that is made of or contains plastic—from waders, reels, rods, and nets, to the bait and, especially, the line. According to research by National Geographic on the “Great Pacific Garbage Patch,” most of it is abandoned fishing gear, with fishing nets comprising 46% of the trash and the majority of the rest being discarded fishing industry equipment like traps, crates and baskets. While it’s hard to avoid using gear that is made of plastic, at least you can be sure if it is to reuse it again and again, rather than discarding it when the next best thing comes along. Keep track of fishing gear so it is not lost, and don’t allow fishing line to be abandoned as it can easily entangle and strangle birds. If the line is monofilament, there are companies which will collect and recycle it. Read more about one state’s effort to address this issue at: http://mrrp.myfwc.com/

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