I'm sure some of you have been concerned, or someone has asked you before about collecting fishes and how you can do that when we are supposed to be about the appreciation, study and conservation of the continent's native fishes. Some of you may have had different thoughts about the subject. But here is a scientific evaluation:
If you don't want to read the whole thing the short conclusion is that data suggest that even intensive, regular sampling and removal of modest numbers of individuals from the same reach of a small stream (< 10 m wide) had no measurable long-term impact on stream fish populations. While this does not mean we should take an 'anything goes' attitude, it certainly offers scientific support that we are not likely hurting most populations with the kind of activities we engage in for educational and even personal collecting purposes.