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Wildlife panel limits tackle use

Wed., Dec. 8, 2010

The use of lead fishing tackle will be restricted at 13 northern Washington lakes frequented by nesting common loons, the state Fish and Wildlife commission decided during its meeting Saturday in Olympia.

After a year of discussion and public meetings, the panel voted to prohibit the use of lead weights and jigs that measure 1½ inches or less along the longest axis at 12 lakes.

Those 12 lakes are Ferry and Swan lakes in Ferry County; Calligan and Hancock lakes in King County; Bonaparte, Blue and Lost lakes in Okanogan County; Big Meadow, South Skookum and Yocum lakes in Pend Oreille County; Pierre Lake in Stevens County, and Hozomeen Lake in Whatcom County.

In addition, the commission banned the use of flies containing lead at Long Lake in Ferry County.

The restrictions, which take effect May 1, are designed to protect loons from being poisoned by ingesting small lead fishing gear lost by anglers.

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