A proposal to ban all lead in fishing tackle is under consideration by the federal government, and your comments of opposition are needed to counter the threat.
This ban proposed in a petition by the Center for Biological Diversity and other environmental groups would include not only sinkers and jigs, but components that contain lead, including brass and ballast in spinnerbaits and lures of all kinds.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is accepting comments until Sept. 15. Hunters and shooters already have been successful in getting ammunition excluded from the ban, and now it's time for anglers and the fishing industry to be heard.
Intent of the ban is to reduce death of birds by ingesting lead. But a study by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service determined that less than 1 percent of waterfowl and other birds, including eagles, are killed by ingesting lead.
Additionally, a ban on lead could raise the cost of affected fishing tackle from six to 15 times, depending on metals used and cost of raw materials.
To learn more and voice your opposition, go to the American Sportfishing Association's online Legislative Action Center.