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For the second year, Inks Dam National Fish Hatchery assists partners with the Steve Harvey Mentoring Event
Southwest Region, June 14, 2013
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Service staff assisting event participant’s with their catches.
Service staff assisting event participant’s with their catches. - Photo Credit: USFWS
Service staff assisting event participant’s with their catches.
Service staff assisting event participant’s with their catches. - Photo Credit: USFWS

Inks Dam National Fish Hatchery again assisted with the Steve Harvey Mentoring Weekend for Young Men. The event took place on June 14, 2013, and was held at Mr. Harvey’s property in Dallas, Texas. It provided 140 mostly inner-city teenage boys the chance to experience the outdoors and learn about the values and skills they will need as adults. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Arlington Ecological Services Field Office, Dallas/Fort Worth Office of Law Enforcement, and Inks Dam NFH partnered to make this another wonderful and exciting event for all the youth involved.

 

Two weeks before the event, hatchery staff stocked 400 channel catfish for the fishing activities. With each fish having a length of 16.44 inches and an average weight of 0.75 pounds, the young men were furnished with an abundant supply of fish to fuel many exciting catches. In addition to stocking fish for the event Inks Dam NFH also brought a supply of the regional “Fisheries Field Stations of Texas” brochures so the young men could learn more about the work of the Service’s Fisheries programs.

The fishing activities gave the young men the opportunity to practice casting, and to fish, but most importantly they provided an opportunity to connect with nature. For many it was the first time they had ever fished and it was very moving to see the joy and excitement on their faces as they threw their first cast or caught their first fish. Don Wilhelm from the Arlington Ecological Services Field Office, the Acting Project Leader and State Coordinator for the Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program, stated that he had never seen so many fish caught at a derby event like this!

Connecting our youth with nature benefits them on a personal level and helps them to understand the importance of preserving America’s wild heritage. Providing them with the opportunity to experience the outdoors whether it is through fishing, hunting, or just spending time outside in a more natural environment will help prepare their generation to become our future conservation leaders.

The Service and Inks Dam NFH greatly appreciate the opportunity to participate in Mr. Harvey’s Mentoring Weekend. It was a very rewarding experience to share the joy of fishing and being outdoors with these young men.

by Paul Dorman, Inks Dam NFH Project Leader.
Edited by Jessie Jobs, Fisheries Website Admin Assistant.


Contact Info: Jessie Jobs, 505-248-6970, jessie_jobs@fws.gov



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