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PostPosted: May 2nd, 2012, 11:04 am 
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Joined: December 27th, 2001, 1:00 am
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Location: Portland
Q: Any chance on getting clarification/input from the Warden Service on the following topic (has come up time and time again on FFIM). Related to how trolling is defined in FFO waters. Folks seem to be having two different opinions/interpretations:

(1) If your canoe or boat is moving—or at least if it’s not anchored—then you are trolling and may be subject to a citation; or

(2) You may fish from a moving canoe or boat, so long as you are casting and dead drifting or retrieving your fly. If you allow the fly to be moved solely by the action of the boat, you have crossed the line and may be cited for trolling on FFO waters.


A: Option two is correct.

Trolling is defined as: trailing a line rigged to catch fish behind or in front of a watercraft being propelled by mechanical, wind or manual power.

Fly Fishing is defined as: Casting upon water and retrieving in a manner in which the weight of the fly line propels the fly.

So as long as you are casting and retrieving your fly and the line is not being moved solely by the action of the boat then you are all set.

-Captain Chris Cloutier, Maine Warden Service
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PostPosted: May 2nd, 2012, 11:33 am 
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Joined: December 2nd, 2001, 1:00 am
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Dan, thanks for getting the warden service to clarify this issue. Another great service from FFIM. My opinion was the wrong one so I'm glad to be corrected.


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PostPosted: May 2nd, 2012, 12:00 pm 
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Joined: December 3rd, 2001, 1:00 am
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still a little grey area if i am fishing a nymph rig from a drift boat in FFO water.......but i THINK because i would be dead drifting, picking up and casting, dead drifting......it would be legal?


anyone else reading it like that?


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PostPosted: May 2nd, 2012, 12:50 pm 
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Joined: January 24th, 2002, 1:00 am
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Nerd-time:

If I look at their definition of trolling, it doesn't mention water propelling the boat, which I think implicitly means they are talking about still water.

For you to be trolling, I think you need to meet two conditions:
1. The fly is moving relative to the surrounding water due to a force applied to the line.
2. The force applied to the line is being caused primarily by the movement of the boat being propelled in the manner of trolling defined by DIFW.

So if your rig is dead drifting, I don't think you have to worry about it. If you're swinging streamers from a moving boat, somebody could complain, but if the boat is being propelled by the water, I think you're fine.

The only thing that's grey to me is how they define retrieving -- if you have a really slow retrieve with pauses while you're being blown across the lake, then you start to look like you're trolling. It sounds like their distinction is the activity of the fisherman, so as long as you're actively casting and retrieving, you should be fine.


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PostPosted: May 3rd, 2012, 7:16 am 
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Joined: January 17th, 2011, 5:39 pm
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Location: on the water somewhere in Maine
Thanks Tark that was my understanding of the law, as previously stated.


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