I do not think that opening up Austin Pond to ice fishing is a very good idea. The state of Maine has always said that it is not a sustainable pond for brook trout or salmon. If you open Austin to ice fishing, people will clean out the trout and salmon.

Now, I have a camp on Austin Pond. My family has been fishing Austin for more than 100 years. When the railroad was in that part of the country, my great grandfather lumbered there around Big and Little Austin, and Bald Mountain. We can always catch fish there. They haven’t stocked a salmon in there for about 40 years, but they are still there today. In around 1960 the state said Palmer Pond had too many trout. One winter of ice fishing and it was cleaned out! This pond has never come back since then.

The state opened Shin Pond to ice fishing one year; the following spring you couldn’t catch a fish.
Small lakes in the back woods of Maine like Austin should never be opened to ice fishing in my opinion.

Michael G. Foster
Solon

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