Monday, December 19, 2011

The loons, Henry, the loons.

A couple of months ago I posted an article on tin shot. It was a critically acclaimed piece that explored the nuances of various tin shot and while the follow-up "on stream" article was never published (and may never be) I'm hopeful that it'll get Pulitzer consideration this year.

Who knew?
Some thought I was crazy to stop using lead and if so it was in a "crazy like a fox three-toed orangutan trying to open pistachios" kind of way as opposed to, say, in a simply psychotic manner. It turns out I was way ahead of the mad rush for tin split shot. I got in early while the price was low.

The sovereign (yeah, it took me three attempts to spell that correctly) Commonwealth (just what the heck is a Commonwealth anyway (and, no, it's not a bunch of investment bankers grouped together to avoid taxes)?) of Massachusetts has banned lead sinkers and jigs (of less than one ounce, in freshwater) effective January 1.

Apparently it's cause the loons are dying from lead poisoning (and oil spills) and while I'm no fan of the trout eating vermin that are Loons I wish them no ill will either. So, Massachusetts is taking the lead (Or, the lead. Get it? The lead....t h e  l e a d. Oh, forget it.) on this subject.

I know that the alternatives to lead are not as effective but it would seem a small thing to have to add one or two additional split shot to your line to get the flies down and not have the loons or any other wildlife that might ingest it be harmed. I used tin shot up in Pulaski in November and seemed to do okay though I'll have to visit at least once more to declare tin shot expertise.

Anyhow, this is one more thing to noodle this winter as we dream of spring fishing. Swap out that lead for tin. The loons will appreciate it.

The Loons


  1. Why you do have to make another trip to claim expertise? Did you not use the tin shot in more than one run/riffle/pool? Did you not use more than one piece of tin shot?

    Sometimes it feels like you're not really even paying attention.

  2. Hi. I don't think we've met. I have never been to Pulaski. But you are so right about this; it is well worth publicising. Frankly, it is disgusting and it takes little or no effort to put right. Allow me:

    There is only one Commonwealth, and it is constitute of a number of subordinate outlying colonies (not including Massachusetts until such time as you give our tea back), that pay allegiance to Great Britain (and certain little bits of Ireland) under rule of Her Britannic Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II.

  3. T.J. - You are so right. Let me try again. "I have used tin split shot many times while Steelheading. In fact, I have never had a day on the Salmon River when I didn't hook at least three fish while using tin split shot. I expect your results will be at least as good"

    Anonymous - The tea is ours even though we don't like it all that much (and I know you don't either).