A sign posted at First Roach Pond points out the illegality and potential dangers of illegal fish stocking. Credit: Courtesy of Bob Mallard

Letters submitted by BDN readers are verified by BDN Opinion Page staff. Send your letters to letters@bangordailynews.com

In reference to a recent outdoors column in the BDN, Bob Mallard is to be commended for his extensive research on the history of native Arctic charr, landlocked salmon and rainbow smelt waters in Maine, especially in Green Lake. Unfortunately, as he claims, the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife has “flip-flopped” several times on the issue, saying that Arctic charr are native to Green Lake, then nonnative, native again, not firmly established, likely endemic and recently of unclear origin.

The latter category seems to be about as accurate as one could get, understanding that charr have apparently been taken from Floods Pond in the 1800s, making any judgment of their true origin virtually uncertain as the wildlife and fisheries department has contended.

Additionally, Mallard unfairly criticized an outstanding biologist several times for concluding that the circumstances surrounding this issue are, at best, questionable.

As a long-time avid fisherman, I am convinced that 99.9 percent of the fishing community and others don’t really care where Arctic charr are native to. The real concern that we should be addressing in Maine is a solution to illegal bucket stocking of nonnatives in waters that supposedly contain “wild” species.

Joe Bertolaccini