LineKeepers Help Fishermen Keep Waterways Safe

LineKeepers Help Fishermen Keep Waterways Safe

posted Sunday, October 11, 2020

Fishing is a terrific activity that is fun for all ages and ability levels, and can be done all year round. It's almost inevitable that the line will get snagged, caught, or just plain snapped. If left in the water or on the shore, it poses a hazard for not just boat propellers but also for wildlife of all kinds.

Just this past summer, a loon was spotted in the Colby Pond and Lake Rescue area of Plymouth and Ludlow; the beautiful water bird was entangled with fishing line around its neck and beak, but was apparently still able to swim and feed to some extent. Eric Hanson of the Vermont Center for Ecostudies monitored the bird throughout the summer, and had high hopes for its ability to thrive despite the restraint. Thanks to the Black River Action Team and several terrific volunteers, responsible anglers can now collect their waste fishing line and deposit it safely away from birds, fish, turtles, and other critters, as well as protecting boat propellers from becoming fouled.

The BRAT's LineKeeper units were built by Claremont NH resident John Lambert; three are now installed at several Vermont public fishing areas: Herricks Cove in Rockingham, Hoyt's Landing in Springfield, and now Colby Pond in Plymouth.

The unit is checked periodically throughout the year, and any line collected is gathered by BRAT and will be shipped to Berkley, a manufacturer of fishing gear, for their recycling program. The monofilament line is melted down into plastic pellets which can then be reformed into a range of products, including tackle boxes. It is not made into more fishing line. Learn more about their program here.

Learn how you can help BRAT keep our waterways safe, clean, and healthy by contacting Director Kelly Stettner at [email protected] or leaving a voice message at 802-738-0456.

Photo by BRAT Directory Kelly Stettner; shown L-R are Mary and Kevin Anderson, who installed and are monitoring a LineKeeper unit at Colby Pond in Plymouth.

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