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Commissioner - Chandler E. Woodcock
Commissioner Chandler E. Woodcock
My outdoor journal, kept since 1974, serves as evidence of my most consuming recreational passion, a passion which has many times led my grandmother, mother and wife to say, “Chan, you have to do your chores before you go fishing.”
The economy of those areas was significantly augmented by the dollars spent on deer hunting. We must work with all stakeholders to protect and replenish the deer herd in those areas where it is a necessity. It is a critical task for the new commissioner and the department. A unique opportunity exists for Maine because our inland waters are home to the largest remaining population of native and wild Brook Trout remaining in the continental United States. They are a beautiful and delicate jewel worth protecting.
A report recently released by the National Fish and wildlife Service indicates that fishermen from Maine prefer to fish for Brook Trout more than any other species and our native and wild Brook Trout are a critical part of that fishery.
While a member of the Maine Senate and this committee, I was honored to sponsor a bill from the Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine which established Maine’s native and wild Brook Trout as a “heritage” species. I eagerly look forward to preserving our angling destinations for anglers from around the world. “If you build it, they will come.”
A particular emphasis on attracting young people to hunting, fishing and other outdoor activities is obviously vital to our future. Giving youth more opportunities to participate through our education efforts should be a central focus for all of us and every viable channel should be utilized.
Our department will have a renewed emphasis on customer service. Whether it is a call asking a question about a license purchase or a contract with a warden or biologist in the field, our goal should always be to provide a positive experience.
We must treat our clients, those who enjoy the woods and waters of Maine, with courtesy and a “can do” attitude while promoting respect for the law and the outdoor opportunities which our state affords.
I eagerly look forward to contacting a youngster worm fishing on a small brook, a non-resident sport at one of Maine’s traditional camps or a community-minded citizen running an ice fishing derby for charity. I want to shake their hand and ask, “How’s the fishing or hunting and what can we do better?’
We should be one of the catalysts for the flow of additional dollars which will be spent in Maine. Promote the resources, educate about the importance of those resources and entice more participation in the outdoor arena- it benefits all.
I appreciate the many duties required of the Commissioner of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife. We have much to do and difficult issues to resolve. Rest assured, these great challenges will be met with the common fisherman and outdoor enthusiast in mind.
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