Dr. Ross Boucek - Marathon, Florida
Very happy to introduce another new contributing member here on Flats Nation Dr. Ross Boucek who is the Florida Keys Initiative Manager with BTT (Bonefish and Tarpon Trust) that is based out Miami Florida.
So, what are the aims of the Florida Keys Initiative? In a nutshell and as Dr. Boucek and I discussed and as stated on the BTT site, the program statement is simple in nature, but complex in both size and scope which states:
"BTT launched the Florida Keys Initiative to restore the Florida Keys flats fishery to its world-class status!" And you can find more detail about The Florida Keys Initiative by clicking Here
We are really looking forward to working with Doctor Ross Boucek to help spread that message while helping secure more support for his and other BTT efforts both in Florida and Worldwide here on Flats Nation!
Dr. Ross earned his Masters and Doctoral degrees at Florida International University, studying how weather events, such as hurricanes, droughts, and extreme cold events, impact sport fishes in Florida Bay and Everglades National Park.
Not only is Doctor Boucek going to update and advise us on his ongoing efforts and research as time permits. We are also looking forward to helping cover those topics and others, via our long format Podcasts (we are both stoked on getting those started) with him which should prove to be enlightening as well as very educational! So, sharpen your pencils (have your PC ready to take notes) for we might pass out a quiz at the end of each one! 😊
Doctor Boucek (Ross) at my request, also most graciously agreed to help advise Flats Nation team members on how we can better support and advise our Sportsman / Lifestyle community in covering one of our most important categories, and that is Inshore Conservation as a whole.
And we cannot think of a better person to have help us! This for unlike (some) Groups that feel we must abort and totally quit using our Natural Resources (quite radical and short sighted considering that Sportsman use is what funds it) Ross on the other hand, is a hard-core angler who started out Fishing for Tarpon and Snook in South Florida as a young man. And his love for the Sport and protecting those resources help lead him to his choice of career!
Now, what is that saying, "Never trust a Skinny Chef!" well some of us have a hard time digesting what we are hearing as The Gospel when those preaching such (sometimes radical) ideas have never picked up a Rod and Reel much less a Fly Rod like he still does, only to release them to fight another day and go more make babies 😊
And to help many understand the economic impact Recreational Fishing has just in Florida alone. Please do take the time to read over our article on Sea Trout stocks by clicking Here
Now some of the topics we are looking to cover with Doctor Ross are:
How to traverse a body of water with little to zero impact upon the ecosystem. Technology can be of huge help on that one.
How to handle fish while landing them and help them recover and swim away unharmed.
What has changed with the ecosystem and needs monitored (Salinity, Heavy Metals, Nutrient loads, etc.) changing in our waters?
Present and newer technologies now employed to help better manage our Inshore Resources for maximum return.
Ordering a BTT Florida license tag for your Truck or Boat Trailer along with other ways to help support conservation and research efforts. Being Conservative (simply another word for wise use) does require research dollars to help ensure we are using our best science methodologies to manage the resource for all stakeholders.
Citizen Science opportunities and how you can participate in various research programs!
And quite sure there will be more to add to the list!
We would also like to give a big thanks and shout out to Ian Wilson for all the awesome photography on this one! We love his work, and it saved us a ton of time in article creation by not having to take and edit them on our end. As a photographer myself, I know all too well the time and effort put into such! Looking forward to working with Ian here on Flats Nation and sharing some of his knowledge with us here to help all of us, record our adventures even if your only goal is to share them with family and friends... You can find out more about Ian and pick up some of his work for your Home or Office by clicking Here or preview some on his Instagram page Here
So, Welcome Aboard Doctor Ross! Brother, we are honored to have you sharing your knowledge with us here and cannot think of a better SME (Subject Matter Expert) to help guide us with our combined efforts in getting the message out! This while improving our Flats Fishing ecosystems and the economies Worldwide that depend upon the wise use of them 😊
We invite you to take in a few Flats Nation Podcast Episodes to help "Scratch that Fishing Itch" when working or traveling and you just cannot hitch up the Skiff and go, on these links:
Our main podcast page that works great for your mobile device since they will stream right on your phone / tablet can be found by clicking Here
And our new Flats Nation YouTube Channel can be found by clicking Here and share them with family and friends if you find them Entertaining and Educational! We have some great guests in the works and planning stages on a wide range of topics and product coverage soon.
Tight Lines and God Bless!