The number one threat to Maine's rare native Arctic charr, formerly known as blueback or Sunapee trout, is invasive fish introductions.  This is especially true with regard to smelts, a popular baitfish in Maine, which have seriously compromised three populations, two of which were recently subjected to risky and costly reclamation.   

The Maine chapter of Native Fish Coalition (NFC) with help from Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (MDIFW) and Sportsman's Alliance of Maine (SAM), developed an informational sign to notify anglers as to the presence of Arctic charr, the threat posed to them by invasive fish, and the legal prohibition on the use of live fish as bait under the State Heritage Fish law. 

These signs will be going up at 10 of the 11 Arctic charr waters in Maine open to fishing, the 11th having a unique set of regulations.  Thanks to MDIFW and SAM for helping to make this happen and strengthen the message. 

Special thanks to Emily Bastian, Maine NFC Chair, for her months of hard work to make these important informational signs a reality.  And to Dud Dean Angling Society for getting these fish protected under Maine's State Heritage Fish law.  




  • 18” x 12” Portrait
  • .08" Aluminum
  • UV Ink
  • Quantity = 50 (3.5 per water with replacement inventory)


NFC will…

  • Put up signs (10 native waters open to fishing with live bait restrictions)
  • Help maintain signs
The actual sign as it will be posted

The actual sign as it will be posted


NFC partnered with Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (MDIFW), Sportsman's Alliance of Maine (SAM), The Nature Conservancy (TNC), and North Maine Woods to build a coalition of support and sponsorship for the Arctic charr signs:

  • Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (MDIFW):  MDIFW is a co-sponsor of the sign, and the agency charged with the protection of the resource and enforcement of fishing rules and laws.  MDIFW also has the legal authority to put up the signs which helps logistically.     
  • Sportsman's Alliance of Maine (SAM):  SAM is a co-sponsor of the sign, and the largest sporting organization in Maine.     
  • The Nature Conservancy (TNC):  As the owner of the land around two of the ten target Arctic charr waters, TNC has given us permission to put up the signs, and offered to put them up at one pond.  
  • North Maine Woods (NMW):  North Maine Woods is the largest land manager in Maine.  Several of the targeted Arctic charr waters are either on their land, or only accessible via their land.  NMW operates under a gate-fee system, and has offered us free day-use to put up the signs.    

The signs are printed and being distributed to volunteers to get them put up.  Special thanks to Karen and Ret Talbot for providing the funding to have the signs printed.  We greatly appreciate their generosity and commitment to Maine's wild native Arctic charr.   

This project is dedicated to the memory of Col. James "Jim" Elliott, Jr.  His passion for wild native trout drove him to pursue a BS in Environmental Sciences, spend his summers working at the Dept. of Marine Resources Sea-Run Salmon Division, volunteer for coastal stream surveys as an adult, and chase rare Maine Arctic charr with a fly rod with his son James.

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