By Marlee Ginter

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – Fishing is a popular pastime, especially with all the waterways in Sacramento. Vanhmean Lee said he goes fishing almost daily, casting his line into the pond at Tanzanite Park.

“The biggest fish I caught out here was a 10 pounder, so if you come on the right day you’ll catch a big bass,” said Lee.

But that’s not the only catch when fishing lines get left out and not thrown away.

“Then it gets tangled with my lure and if it gets tangled in the water, I’ll take it out and trash it,” said Lee.

That’s what wildlife officials are urging everyone to do. Those leftover fishing lines are a danger to wildlife.

The Gold Country Wildlife Rescue in Auburn posted pictures last week of two geese with lines painfully wrapped around their feet. Another goose had swallowed a fishing hook.

Christy Berger, president of the Sacramento Herron and Egret Rescue, told CBS13 they get several calls a week about tangled birds during the spring and summer.

“We’ve had Mama goose who had both her legs tangled up while she was trying to take care of her babies so it really is a problem for them. Sometimes it cuts off their circulation and they lose a foot,” Berger said. “There’s groups online, fisherman groups, that will come out and clean and if I see something I’ll pick it up and throw it away.”

That’s the key, especially considering how many end up flying away hurt and later dying.

“Wildlife, in general, is struggling more than ever and it’s mostly due to human cause and this is one of those where we can all help and we can really make a difference in all this,” said Berger.

The California Division of Boating and Waterways has a fishing line recycling program with containers set up across the state. They also have an option for you to mail old fishing lines if you can’t find one of the containers near you.

  1. Mary Finelli says:

    Instead of being told to clean up their fishing line, people who fish should be discouraged from fishing. It harms so many animals and in so many ways, especially the intended victims: the fishes. Science has shown that, like other animals, fishes suffer fear and pain. They deserve respect and compassion not cruel exploitation.

    Fishing isn’t sport, the fish are victims not willing participants. All of the nutrients derived from fish, and from other animals, can be obtained more healthfully, humanely, and environmentally responsibly from plant sources. Needlessly harming animals for food or ‘fun’ or anything else is animal abuse. There’s nothing sporting about it!

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