I mentioned in the Catch & Release thread that I practice catch and release about 99 percent of the time for trout. With the exception being mortally wounded fish and harvesting fish for my elderly Father. I noticed a slight shift in my perception on a recent trip to the Pigeon River Country and the UP that I thought I would share. The majority of places that I fish are small, sterile little streams that are not stocked and consequently the trout tend to be small, sub-legal fish. They are wild, unspoiled environments. Their beauty is unsurpassed in my eyes (Both the Trout and their Habitat). I really enjoy fishing them and I do so with a Catch & Release mentality that allows me to enjoy the fishing and the fish rather than just the catching. Well, on my last trip to the UP, I caught a really nice Brookie that measured just over 8 inches. It had inhaled my spinner and all three barbs were embedded deep in the gullet. I had a difficult time removing the hook even with the aid of hemostats. I could literally see the life force leave this fish. It’s brilliant colors fading away and disappearing. And I thought to myself, this ones getting harvested for my Daddio… Well, what is one puny-little 8 inch fish? It’s hardly a meal. I might as well try and get another for him. And this is where my perception changed that I mentioned earlier. Now my fishing became focused on catching. And not only catching, but catching Brookies legally-sized. Up until that point I was excited every time a 5 or 6 inch fish came darting out of the woodwork to attack my spinner. Now I was disappointed that they weren't bigger fish that I could add to my harvest of trout… Harvesting that one fish had kind of ruined my enjoyment of fishing and taking the time to appreciate the beauty of my surroundings and those brilliantly colored little 5 to 6 inch gems. I did end up taking one more 8 inch Brookie that day for a grand total of two fish for my Dad. But I’ll tell you what, I really wanted to harvest enough to make a meal for my family and even conspired with my fishing buddy to take a limit if possible. It didn’t happen. Which leads me to bring up the topic I would like to discuss. The Natural Resources Commission is rumored to be putting pressure on the DNR to implement a 10 fish limit for Brook Trout on all Type 1 streams in the UP starting in 2018. To me, this seems a reckless management policy for wild, non-stocked watersheds. How many of the five commissioners have in the past or present, actually fish for Brook Trout? I have fished two of the Research Areas with a 10 fish limit and struggled between my buddy and I to catch a legally sized Brook Trout, let alone 10 of them. Or 20 between the two of us. These are rivers that the DNR stocks annually. What about the thousands of Type 1 streams that they don’t stock? I think even to most prolific anglers would agree that they could catch 10 or more Brookies in a day but, would they all be the legally-sized 7 inches? Or, most likely 5-6 inches? This is where perception comes into play. If an angler catches a 5 to 6 inch Brook Trout and looks at it as a meal, it’s not much. But the angler that catches that fish and in his minds eye multiplies that by 10, will think he is ready for a feast… In other words, Anglers will start treating Brook Trout like smelt. How many will actually take the time to measure the fish they catch to know for certain they are greater than the legal 7 inches? Or, will taking (10) 5 to 6 inch fish to make a meal become justified? The Brook Trout is Michigan’s State Fish. The UP and the Northern Lower Peninsula are home to the last environments to have native-wild Brook Trout living and I think these fish are worth protecting. Yes, I think harvesting Brook Trout should be enjoyed by any angler who pursues them. But do we really need to take 10 per day, per angler? So, I would like to open a discussion on the proposed 10 fish limit on Brook Trout in the UP on all Type 1 streams. Do you think it is a wise decision? Or a foolish one? Should a 10 fish limit be implemented on all Type 1 streams and rivers in the Upper Peninsula? Or, just rivers that are stocked annually by the DNR? What do you think? Let’s try and keep the name calling to a minimum. What I mean is, just because an angler focuses on the beauty of trout and their surroundings doesn’t make them a Prima Donna. And conversely, just because an angler likes to eat fish doesn’t make them a Dirtbag or a Bait-flinger etc. Let’s keep it civil and constructive. Sorry about the redundancy. This thread will be added to several of the Michigan Trout Streams forums and sub-forums to get a better understanding of viewpoints from areas across the region.