Trout Unlimited was born in 1959 when a small group of concerned Michigan anglers banded together to ensure the health of trout, their habitat, and the sport of angling. Just two years later, the fledgling conservation organization had won its first victory: Michigan had replaced its indiscriminate stocking of catch able-sized trout with stream improvement programs, fingerling planting, and protective fishing regulations. Word of the success in Michigan spread quickly and conservation-minded anglers in other states, from Pennsylvania to California, joined together under the Trout Unlimited banner to effect similar change in their trout fisheries. Over fifty years later, Trout Unlimited is over 150,000 members strong, with more than 400 chapters nationwide. Trout Unlimited strength has always rested in its thousands of dedicated volunteers, many of them anglers, committed to conserving trout and salmon for the next generation of anglers. Trout Unlimited most visible impact has been on the hundreds of watersheds nationwide where Trout Unlimited members have spent countless hours restoring trout and salmon habitat. Watershed restoration is more than rolling rocks and picking up trash; a typical project often spans years of research, planning, and ongoing stream work. Local chapters across the country also survey and research stream ecosystems and fish populations, urge local and state legislators to make conservation-minded policy, and conduct education programs for people of all ages.
Today, protecting trout and salmon requires up-to-the-minute scientific research and active legislative advocacy to back up hands-on habitat restoration. To provide that expertise, Trout Unlimited has built a dedicated team of volunteers and professionals to influence local, state and national environmental policy and carry out Trout Unlimited conservation agenda. Trout Unlimited legislative vigilance and leadership ensures the organization is positioned to actively participate in efforts that enact important legislation to protect fish and aquatic habitat, and too often, stop legislation that would be harmful to our fisheries resources. Trout Unlimited is also helping to develop responsible management plans for the future through partnerships with the state and federal agencies.
There are still many battles to be won to ensure the future of trout and salmon. The threats to the survival of America's coldwater fisheries are many and diverse, but with your help, Trout Unlimited will continue to fight to conserve, protect, and restore trout and salmon and the watersheds they inhabit.