Years ago, sounds like around 1969, the founder of the Bass Anglers Sportsman’s Society (aka BASS), Ray Scott, had a revelation that led to catch and release fishing in the BASS tournament:
“I got invited to attend a fly fishing conclave in Aspen, Colo. to speak to the group. They took me out to what they called a ‘river’ — it looked like a little creek to me — to fly fish, something I’d never done. The guys were all lined up with their fancy vests and fly rods when one of the guys at the end of the line let out a yell; he’d hooked a trout.
“All the fishermen moved down to watch him land his ‘prize’, a little trout about 10 inches long. Then he gently removed the hook and carefully released the fish and you never heard such taking on from the other fishermen,” Scott recalled.
“On the flight home, a light bulb went off in my head; we’re killing too many bass so from watching that one little trout being released,” said Scott, “I started the ‘catch and release’ program fishing tournaments religiously follow even now.”
Good stuff. We would certainly not be doing much fishing if we fished out every creek and stream.