The original habitat of largemouth bass is North America. But largemouth bass widely lives in Japan. Why does largemouth live in Japan?
In 1925 Akabishi Tetsuma, a Japanese businessman imported ninety largemouth from California into the Ashino Lake. He thought that largemouth bass would be beneficial resources in future, for largemouth fishing was exciting and it tasted very good. But largemouth fishing did not become popular at that time. Because largemouth fishing was not fit for traditional Japanese fishing culture. Old Japanese anglers liked simple tackles and enjoyed delicate fishing. They were also conservative. Largemouth fishing was not attractive for them.
Largemouth bass in the Ashino Lake had been forgotten and had not attracted attention for a long time. Once for all largemouth had been noticed. USA defeated Japan in World War II and the USA army occupied Japan in 1945. Some officers and souldiers enjoyed largemouth fishing on that Lake.
Japan got over that defeat and dad been becoming successful in economy and industry. From 1970 Japanese anglers have been aware of the western style of lure fishing and been interested in it. Largemouth bass in the Ashino Lake was spotlighted again.
Japanese people has loved fishing since the Neolithic age, as many hooks made of deer horn have been found in the ruins. So we have original lures. But western lures are fresh for our eyes and lure fishing has becoming popular in recent thirty years.
Many anglers hoped to enjoy largemouth bass fishing on ponds and lakes nearby them. Manufacturers and dealers of fishing tackles thought that it was a business chance. Some anglers, manufacturers and dealers have carried largemouth bass from the Ashino Lake to other waters of every places in this country. Now largemouth bass lives in almost waters in Japan.
Many anglers have been enjoying largemouth fishing. Manufacturers and dealers have got much money. But fisher people in various places have found that Japanese native fish like Japanese minnow and breams have been decreasing. Naturalists and ecologists have claimed that largemouth bass has no natural enemy in Japan, eat a lot of native fish and insects, and has been destroying Japanese nature.
So some people think that largemouth bass in Japan is alien and should be exterminated completely. Even anglers (like trout or breams or carp anglers) think so. Anglers possessed with the fascination of largemouth fishing are confused now. Most manufacturers and dealers keep silent.
A new face, smallmouth bass has come. As smallmouth can live in cooler waters than largemouth can, trout anglers are afraid that smallmouth will invade their waters. They and some fishery co-operatives have got rid of smallmouth.
The problem of bass fishing in Japan is important. Probably everyone think that some rules is needed. Should largemouth and smallmouth bass be get rid of completely? Should their waters be limitted in some areas? I hope that scientists, fishermen and anglers will discuss well and conclude as soon as possible.