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Experimental results from the fourth Queensland recreational fishing diary program (2005)

McInnes, K. (2008) Experimental results from the fourth Queensland recreational fishing diary program (2005). Technical Report. State of Queensland. Department of Primary Industries and Fisheries.

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Abstract

This report provides a summary of the catch, release and harvest data obtained in the fourth Queensland statewide recreational fisheries program. The information was collected as part of the Recreational Fisheries Information System (RFISH) program, which was developed in 1995 to provide managers, policy makers, industry and researchers with catch estimates for the Queensland recreational fishery to enhance the management of Queensland’s fisheries resources.
To calculate the catch estimates, fishing participation rates collected using a random telephone survey of the Queensland population were combined with catch estimates volunteer fishers provided through a 12-month diary program. The diary participants identified during the random telephone survey provided information on where they fished, what they caught and released, how long they spent fishing and their method of fishing. Over 5000 anglers participated in the 2005 diary program to provide information relating to their fishing activities (McInnes 2006).
Since participation rates were first collected (1996), we have seen a steady decline in the percentage of the Queensland population who can be described as ‘fishers’—28.1% of the Queensland population in 1996, 26.1% in 1998, 24.6% in 2001 and 20.6% in 2004. This represents a decline in numbers from 882 200 (1996) Queensland resident fishers to 733 400 (2004). As this was the fourth estimate of statewide catch data, this report takes the opportunity to look at trends in catch, harvest and release between 1997 and 2005.
The results from the 2005 diary survey produced similar estimates to the 1997, 1999 and 2002 surveys, with an estimated 50 million fish and crabs captured by Queensland resident anglers during the year. The total estimate for 2005 shows an increase of over 4 million fish, crabs and invertebrates; however, it must be noted that throughout the 2005 diary program considerable effort was made to include all species of fish and invertebrates caught for bait purposes. The catch estimate of bait, compared to the 2002 figures, has increased by over 10 million fish and invertebrates; this number clearly distorts the total catch figures.
For some species the recreational catch is higher than the current commercial fisheries harvest. This again highlights the need for regular monitoring of the recreational fishery as it results in significant removal of fisheries resources from both marine and freshwater environments (Higgs et al. 2007)
The RFISH information has been used in sustainability reports submitted to the Australian Government Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts (DEWHA) as a requirement of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999.
Although only in the early stages of operation at the time of writing this report, the RFISH program has begun to concentrate on providing better estimates of recreational catches and increasing its efforts at a regional scale to meet the requirements set by DEWHA. The RFISH program has been refined to include interviews of anglers at boat ramps and other shore-based locations to obtain more localised catch and effort information. At the time of writing this report around 15 bus route pilot surveys were being conducted by the RFISH program between Tweed Heads and Tewantin.

Item Type:Monograph (Technical Report)
Keywords:DAF Fishery monitoring
Subjects:Aquaculture and Fisheries > Fisheries > Fishery conservation
Aquaculture and Fisheries > Fisheries > Fishery management. Fishery policy
Aquaculture and Fisheries > Fisheries > Fishery research
Aquaculture and Fisheries > Fisheries > Fishery for individual species
Deposited On:17 Dec 2018 04:58
Last Modified:17 Dec 2018 04:58

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