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There is a similar feeling in the surf community when Stand Up Paddle boards first came out. Laird Hamilton and some of his friends are the ones who really introduced SUP's to the market and shortly there after they were showing up in surfing line-ups around the world. People complained that Laird was the reason why so many well known surf spots are now crowded with SUPs.

He was interviewed awhile back and when the guy asked Laird how he felt about people blaming him for busy line-ups at surf spots he said something like; "If I'm the reason a bunch of people are getting out on the water, getting exercise and bringing joy into their lives then I can live with that.."

I felt that was a good perspective on a similar topic...
 

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I Love microskiff.com!
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Lefty didn't ruin Homosassa - the records alone were going to bring the crowds. It was the water management and development that changed the water quality that pushed the fish out, not Lefty's article.
Seemed to me Burke was intimating that development and water flow (lack there of) issues were main cause in the fishing's demise.
 

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I don't know why y'all are slamming Burke - he simply stated the article and then how the locals responded to it. There have been too many articles written before and after about areas to fish, so you can't knock just one guy who did it, nor an author reporting how it was viewed.

Lefty didn't ruin Homosassa - the records alone were going to bring the crowds. It was the water management and development that changed the water quality that pushed the fish out, not Lefty's article.
You right Burke mentioned the crabs are what made the Tarpon large and come to that area. The crabs where so thick they would attach to trim tabs and bang against the PP
Then the builders built golf courses house’s and sucked up the fresh water flow. That killed the crab population hence the Tarpon left
 

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I don't know why y'all are slamming Burke - he simply stated the article and then how the locals responded to it. There have been too many articles written before and after about areas to fish, so you can't knock just one guy who did it, nor an author reporting how it was viewed.

Lefty didn't ruin Homosassa - the records alone were going to bring the crowds. It was the water management and development that changed the water quality that pushed the fish out, not Lefty's article.
1. YEP. Burke is an author/journalist that likes to fish. He just mentioned things that came up in his research while writing the book. I don't even think he says anything about meeting Lefty in person at all in the book (I devoured it in two days when I bought it this time last year so forgive me if I've misspoke), nor does he say anything directly addressing Lefty from his own (the writer's) standpoint. He's just recounting the stories and memories down from all the other dudes that were there in the good ole' days. I don't see anything he wrote as a personal attack at anybody mentioned in the book's character. That's just my opinion, but I'm just a young(ish) guy with a skiff.

2. YEP again. The word would've gotten out sooner than later. Hell I'm late to the game in our area and even the most tight lipped old time guys will throw you a bone for a tarpon spot every now and then, assuming you're doing the right thing on the water. Word of poon travels fast. I always like to throw a little shade on the fishing advice my weekend buddies ask for!! (because why not?? haha). As for water management. FUUUUCKKKK that's a bummer all around
 

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I was just wondering what everyone thought about Monte Burke's accusation in "Lords of the Fly" that Lefty was responsible for the overfishing and collapse of the tarpon fishery there? While he points out that Lefty, as what amounts to a fishing correspondent, was just doing his job, it still makes for conflicted feelings about Lefty's legacy.

Additionally Norman Duncan on the Millhouse Podcast also called Lefty's character into question when he said Lefty appropriated the Deceiver from him (Norman) and that loop knot had always been around and Lefty just decided to capitalize on it.

Interested to hear what others thought of these two comments.
"Say sour grapes
You can laugh and stare
Say sour grapes
But I don't care
I couldn't care less if I didn't have a friend
'Cept people would say I was crazy
And I wouldn't work 'cause I don't need money
But the same folks would say I was lazy"

"Sour Grapes" by Brother John Prine
 

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You right Burke mentioned the crabs are what made the Tarpon large and come to that area. The crabs where so thick the would attach to trim tabs and bang against the PP
Then the builders built golf courses house’s and sucked up the fresh water flow. That killed the crab population hence the Tarpon left
The very first year I fished Homosassa I was SHOCKED at the number of crab traps. It was such a shock that I counted 60 on just the north side of the channel. That's not counting the ones on the flats.

Then you got onto the flats and there was 50 skiffs out there pushing fish around.

It's rarely one thing that does it but lack of food and pressure will move fish.
 

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I was just wondering what everyone thought about Monte Burke's accusation in "Lords of the Fly" that Lefty was responsible for the overfishing and collapse of the tarpon fishery there? While he points out that Lefty, as what amounts to a fishing correspondent, was just doing his job, it still makes for conflicted feelings about Lefty's legacy.

Additionally Norman Duncan on the Millhouse Podcast also called Lefty's character into question when he said Lefty appropriated the Deceiver from him (Norman) and that loop knot had always been around and Lefty just decided to capitalize on it.

Interested to hear what others thought of these two comments.
I don't think the OP is fair to either Lefty or Monte Butrke. It's a huge stretch to say that Monte thinks or stated that Lefty is responsible for the collapse of the Homosassa fishery. First, to me it read that Pate's movie did more to pressure the fishery than Lefty's article but more importantly Burke points more toward water issues caused by overdevelopment as being responsible for the collapse of the fishery. I heard Duncan on Millhouse and respect him but frankly the issue with the deceiver is a he said/he said, and if I'm not mistaken, Lefty did popularize the non slip loop, but didn't lay claim to having invented it. Other people called it the Kreh loop. I do know what Lefty has contributed to the sport, I have seen him in person tirelessly give of his time and talents to help others learn. Did he have a bit of PT Barnum in him? Yep, but through my lens Lefty's contributions far outweighed his shortcomings. Ain't none of us perfect.
 

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It's a huge stretch to say that Monte thinks Lefty is responsible for the collapse of the Homosassa fishery. First, to me it read that Pate's movie did more to pressure the fishery than Lefty's article but more importantly Burke points more toward water issues caused by overdevelopment as being responsible for the collapse of the fishery. I heard Duncan on Millhouse and respect him but frankly the issue with the deceiver is a he said/he said. I do know what Lefty has contributed to the sport, I have seen him in person tirelessly give of his time and talents to help others learn. Did he have a bit of PT Barnum in him? Yep, but through my lens Lefty's contributions far outweighed his shortcomings. Ain't none of us perfect.
I tried to qualify my statement in a later comment but I agree. It is funny you bring up Barnum as that is exactly who I thought of when I was reading.

I was just surprised by how much time Burke spent on Lefty especially given how much it seemed he consulted with Steve Huff and Pallot. I do not think either of them would have spoken negatively about Lefty. I wonder if any of that was driven by Evans since he was obviously one of the key sources? I was very surprised by Duncan's comments but immediately after he made them the tone of the podcast took a bitter turn and I think Duncan just does not fee like he has gotten the credit be believes he is due.
 

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The very first year I fished Homosassa I was SHOCKED at the number of crab traps. It was such a shock that I counted 60 on just the north side of the channel. That's not counting the ones on the flats.

Then you got onto the flats and there was 50 skiffs out there pushing fish around.

It's rarely one thing that does it but lack of food and pressure will move fish.
We went last summer. One Tarpon racing by the boat was all we saw in 5 days. 20-30 guides around us nobody saw a fish. We did see lots of Green Turtles I mean lots of Green Turtles and a couple of sharks
 

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We went last summer. One Tarpon racing by the boat was all we saw in 5 days. 20-30 guides around us nobody saw a fish. We did see lots of Green Turtles I mean lots of Green Turtles and a couple of sharks
This was 1995 and the water flow was still really good from the rivers.

The Villages seems to be the culprit for the water issues and decreased flows for Chas, **** and Weiki watchi.
 

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I was glad to see Homassasa, Oklahoma flat and Black Rock where beautiful flats but I'm going somewhere else next year maybe with 2 Tarpon
 

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I tried to qualify my statement in a later comment but I agree. It is funny you bring up Barnum as that is exactly who I thought of when I was reading.

I was just surprised by how much time Burke spent on Lefty especially given how much it seemed he consulted with Steve Huff and Pallot. I do not think either of them would have spoken negatively about Lefty. I wonder if any of that was driven by Evans since he was obviously one of the key sources? I was very surprised by Duncan's comments but immediately after he made them the tone of the podcast took a bitter turn and I think Duncan just does not fee like he has gotten the credit be believes he is due.
I don't know who invented the loop knot. I don't think Duncan or Lefty did but Lefty made it famous. I think the Duncan loop is a completely different knot
I started using it years ago and just called it a loop knot. I think I first saw it on a knot tying sheet that came in a Rapala lure box
 

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Burke is a good writer and is telling the stories of big tarpon sight fishing as told by people he interviewed. Burke is not judging, just gathering the facts. One of his observations is most of the extreme passion tarpon hunters had issues/conflict with their fathers. Maybe trying to prove to themselves they were the best at whatever endeavor they chose to pursue.
 

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The other day I was talking to an 84 year old fellow Floridian fisherman about how Florida Used To Be, he paused and said Uncle Ustabe died...a lot of truth in that statement.
 
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