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Jun 1, 2016 4:49 PM

NH ban on lead tackle goes into effect to help protect birds

The Associated Press

CONCORD (AP) — A ban on lead fishing tackle in New Hampshire has gone into effect to help protect loons and other bird species.

Harry Vogel is a senior biologist at the Loon Preservation Committee. He calls the law one of the toughest of its kind in the nation. The law goes beyond use to include sales and covers sinkers up to an ounce, more far reaching than most other states' laws.

Vogel says lead tackle was the largest cause of loon mortality in New Hampshire, with the state losing 124 loons from 1989 to 2011 due to lead sinkers. He says a challenge will be enforcing the law and educating anglers about alternatives such as steel and tin sinkers.

New Hampshire Bass Federation president Matt Thoin says many fishermen already have shifted to safer alternatives including tungsten.

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