“Protect the Environment...Teach Someone to Fly Fish.” - Leland Frazier
If our salmon are not healthy, then our watersheds are not healthy—and if our watersheds our not healthy, then we have truly squandered our heritage and mortgaged our future.
— (John Kitzhaber, Governor of Oregon, Speech at "A Tale of Two Rivers: National Conference of Trout Unlimited," August 16, 2000)
PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) and like organizations believe that leaving wild animals alone will ensure their health and future success on this planet. Unfortunately, this belief is wrong. Without perceived value and awareness, born through human interaction, no animal or natural environment is safe from human impact.
Take for example the humble mayfly. Etherial in design and flight, this aquatic insect is a joy just to behold. It's also the favored food source of wild trout. Unfortunately, our mayfly population is on the decline. This is due to increased water temperatures and the reduction in overall health of our once-pristine rivers and streams.
As an indicator species, the mayfly's declining population is telling us that our waters are in trouble. Convincing the average person that this water-born insect's future is worthy of their limited time and interest is futile. However, creating a higher level value, in the form a wild trout, is very possible through the sport fly fishing. Fly anglers who value wild trout, and the experience created while pursuing them, will go to great lengths to ensure their trout's environment is protected. Now the mayfly has a chance.
Fly fishing is arguably the simplest form of fishing, as it requires limited fishing gear and can be practiced by just about anyone, just about anywhere. It's a great excuse for friends or family members to gather in the beauty of nature. Fly fishing also offers the opportunity for that magical moment to occur, when wild animal meets human hand. Value and interest is created in the experience and an environmentalist is born.
At Leland, we've been mentoring people in fly fishing and environmental stewardship for almost 30 years. From first cast to first fish, our passion for sharing the sport with others runs deep. We know that each person we assist in catching their first fish could mean yet another supporter for cleaner waters. Even if our environmental interest was born of our business endeavors, the wild trout and the the humble mayfly don't mind at all.
Leland Fly Fishing Outfitters - Mentors of Fly Fishing and the Environment.