Casting a line
Local children joined South Nation Conservation staff and guest speakers at the Cass Bridge Conservation Area on Wed., July 18 and Thurs., July 19 for the 10th annual Youth Fishing Camp Day. The Winchester camp was the second of three to be held over the summer that teaches the next generation of anglers how to fish responsibly and introduces children without any fishing experience to the joys of the sport.      Sawyer Helmer photo

Kalynn Sawyer Helmer
Record Staff
WINCHESTER – South Nation Conservation held their 10th annual youth fishing day camp at the Cass Bridge Conservation Area on Wed., July 18 and Thurs., July 19. The full days featured fishing, lunch and learning about best practices, types of fish and conservation efforts for children ages nine to 13. There were also guest speakers to talk about fly fishing, legislations and techniques.

Each day saw a full roster of children attend the event which was the second of three around the SNC jurisdiction. The fishing camp days are an initiative from the SNC similar to the youth hunting camp, both aim to teach the future generation of anglers and hunters, skills to be sustainable and environmentally conscious in their practices. Before the children hit the dock to cast their lines, they are taught about the natural environment of the watershed, the tools of fishing responsibly and the cycle of life. The latter lesson was taught by explaining that fish who swallow the hooks or are injured can be released to become another fish’s food.

“They are our future generation of anglers,” said Samantha DeVries, SNC communications and outreach summer student on break from Bishop’s University. “We teach them to conserve and enjoy nature, how to identify different fish species, how to properly catch and release and how to treat fish properly.”

The final fishing day camp will be held on Aug. 8 and 9 at the Jessup’s Falls Conservation Area in Plantagenet.