Set Your Hook

Polite Fishing Line

Nothing is more frustrating than a day of fishing when the fish just aren’t biting. Then, you finally get a “strike” and as you’re reeling in you realize that it’s not a fish on your hook, it’s a snarl of used fishing line.


If you must change out your line on the lakeshore, DON’T put it in the lake!

This fishing line receptical is at Goldwater Lake in Prescott, Arizona.

Ideally, there will be PVC receptacles from the Monofilament Recycling Project, sponsored by Berkley, for used fishing line that you can use, but again, push the line in deep! The fishing line poses a serious threat to fish, birds, and wildlife.

If there aren’t any recepticals (they’re getting to be pretty common here in Arizona at least) then push the fishing line way down deep in a trashcan. Line is lightweight and will float out of trashcans on a breeze. Of, even better, take it with you and recycle it later.

If you cut off line at the lake shore, throw it away properly, not just “away.”

Developed in the 1930s, monofilament fishing line is made from a single, continuous strand of nylon. Discarded monofilament is believed to last 600 years in the marine environment.

Special thanks to reader Paul Coomer for this tip.

Readers Weigh In:

  • How do you dispose of fishing line (and trash) lake side?
  • Have you ever seen wildlife snarled in fishing line? What did you do?

What is A “Polite” Tip?

I’m a big fan of enjoying all Mother Nature and our public lands have to offer. But anybody who knows me (or reads the blogs regularly) knows I have no patience with people who don’t take care of the Great Outdoors. That’s why I regularly post articles in my “Polite” series. These tips and articles are designed to give you easy-to-follow rules that protect the great outdoors for you, me, and future generations.

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