Steve Wilson

SteveWilsonOur interview with Steve Wilson, President of Maine’s B.A.S.S. Nation

Do you use soft plastic lures?

Absolutely. Soft plastic lures work very well for bass fishing. I have two kids who both fish and I taught them both on soft baits. In Maine, everyone uses them. Bass fishing and soft plastic lures go hand-in-hand.

Were you aware the state of Maine threatened to ban soft plastic lures two years ago?

Yes, but I don’t think I would have known about it had I not had my position. I was talking with people I bumped into and almost no one had heard anything about the ban. I ended up saying, “Here’s a list of your legislators. Make a phone call.” I bet I did that 100 times.

The Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife sees soft plastics as a litter issue, but there is still a threat of a total ban. If this occurred, how would you be affected?

If that was to happen, we wouldn’t stop bass fishing but it would change the way we fish. It would be much harder to fish, so it would be hard on bass fishing in the state of Maine. Some people would walk away from the sport. It would ripple out to guide services, retailers…it would hurt everybody.

Do you feel that a ban would be warranted?

There is no proof of any issues with soft plastics. I agree that this is a litter issue – as are golf balls and beer cans. What you carry in, you have to carry out.

What would you be willing to do to stop a ban?

Maine B.A.S.S. Nation is doing cooperative efforts with the Dept. of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife and with lake associations. Every time there’s a discussion about this issue, we try to be part of it. With 240 active members, we try to be part of the solution by getting them involved and supplying the manpower to make it happen. We don’t think we’ll win this without doing that.

Join Steve in committing to release fish, not lures. Sign the Pledge to Pitch It today. To learn more about the threatened ban on soft baits, click here.