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Published: Friday, 5/27/2011 - Updated: 3 years ago

COMMENTARY

New Ohio wildlife chief high on business

BY STEVE POLLICK
OUTDOORS
David Lane David Lane
NOT BLADE PHOTO Enlarge

David B. Lane, a man with a background in business and forestry, has been appointed chief of the Ohio Division of Wildlife after serving as acting manager for the division's Wildlife District One office in central Ohio since October, 2009.

As an appointee in the Gov. John Kasich administration, Lane replaces David M. Graham who retired from the post earlier this year after serving under the former Strickland administration. He brings with him to the post a reputation as a good listener and a consensus-builder.

As chief of wildlife, Lane, 48, will oversee Ohio's fish and wildlife management programs, as well as management of more than 170,000 acres of state wildlife areas, 2.25 million acres of Lake Erie, and 451 miles of the Ohio River.

"David's career reflects a diverse background in conservation and business, as well as experience with law enforcement and proven leadership within the division," said Ohio Department of Natural Resources Director David Mustine, who made the appointment. "He will be an asset helping the division fulfill its core mission as well as strengthening our internal and external partnerships to promote outdoor recreation opportunities and management of public lands."

A native of West Virginia, Lane was hired by the state wildlife division in 2002 as a wildlife officer in Fayette County. He was promoted to wildlife officer supervisor in 2005 and named as acting District One manager in 2009. For 14 years, he worked for Appalachian Timber Services, Inc., in West Virginia. As vice president of the company, he oversaw all aspects of marketing, product development, sales training, budgets, and evaluation of financial statements.

Thus the new chief's credentials reflect a business orientation, as seen in many other Kasich administration appointments.

Lane earned an associate of science degree in forest technology and a bachelor of arts in business administration from Glenville State College in West Virginia. In 1987, he earned a master of science degree in forestry from West Virginia University. He and his family live in Washington Court House.

The departed Graham's tenure was overshadowed by a still pending case in which he and four other top administrators were indicted in Brown County in southwest Ohio for their roles in a disciplinary action involving a state wildlife officer.

The complex case remains tied up in appeals court but originally revolved around the wildlife officer allowing a fellow wildlife officer from out-of-state to purchase an Ohio resident hunting license instead of a much more expensive out-of-state tag, as a so-called courtesy.

Mich. reminds anglers about bait restrictions

Bass fishing season opens statewide in Michigan tomorrow, and the Department of Natural Resources reminds anglers the use of minnows for bait is restricted in some waters as part of a strategy to slow the spread of viral hemorrhagic septicemia (VHS).

Anglers who purchase minnows for bait should make sure they are certified as VHS-free. Certified disease-free bait is widely available and may be used anywhere for 14 days. The use of noncertified bait is restricted to only those waters that have been detected with VHS. All bait collected by anglers is considered noncertified bait.

VHS is a viral disease that causes fish to die from internal bleeding and has caused mortalities among a number of species of fish in Michigan. The disease has been found in the Michigan waters of lakes Erie, Huron, and Superior and has been detected in Lake Michigan, though not in Michigan waters. It has been found in at least two inland lakes -- Budd in Clare County and Baseline in Washtenaw County.

"There is no known treatment for VHS," said MDNR fish production manager Gary Whelan, who monitors fish diseases for the department. "Our best defense against it is trying to prevent its spread."

In other fishing news, strong storms and heavy rains between Tuesday and yesterday are playing havoc with white bass and channel catfish fishing activity on the Maumee, Portage, and Sandusky rivers. The streams were four to six feet above normal, muddy, and not expected to crest until later today or tomorrrow, thus making access problematic for several days.

Offshore waters on western Lake Erie are starting to clean up and some boat-anglers, especially trollers, are starting to locate some active walleye, especially around Canadian-side reefs and islands, and north of West Sister Island.

Various inland upground water-supply reservoirs may provide the better opportunities for the holiday weekend. Check them out online at wildohio.com/fishing.

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The 22nd annual Multiple Sclerosis Walleye Fishing Tournament is set for June 8, 7 a.m. to 6 p.m., at Midway Marina, 1871 N.E. Catawba Rd., Port Clinton.

First, second and third place trophies will be awarded for the largest walleye caught and for the largest stringer. Cost is $250 per person or $1,200 for a boat of six people. Individual tickets can be purchased online at MSohiobuckeye.org. To purchase a boat entry, call the Ohio Buckeye Chapter of the National MS Society at 1-800-344-4867. For other details contact Tony Bernard at (614) 515-4608 or tony.bernard@nmssoha.org.

Contact Steve Pollick at: spollick@theblade.com or 419-724-6068.



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