WA’s latest statewide recreational fishing survey underway

Boat ramp visits and first-hand fisher info are valuable in the research

Recreational fishing is highly valued by many Western Australians with some of the world’s best fishing experiences on offer along the State’s vast coastline and offshore islands.

Recreational fishers not only provide a significant economic contribution, they are also key stewards of the aquatic environment and contribute vital information on fisheries resources.

Every 2–3 years, the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD) collects information direct from fishers about the frequency and location of their fishing activity, the species they catch and how many were kept and released, as well as other social and economic data.

Interviewers from the Edith Cowan University Survey Research Centre are now contacting fishers by telephone for the latest survey to ask about their fishing activity.

DPIRD’s Principal Research Scientist Karina Ryan said the phone surveys would help build the picture of recreational fishing across all marine bioregions in Western Australia. Information from this survey will be compared with previous surveys to improve our understanding of recreational fishing.

“The success of the survey relies on the support of the recreational fishing community, so if you get a phone call, please take part – your information is important and will be treated anonymously,” Ms Ryan said.

“As well as the phone survey, DPIRD researchers will visit boat ramps and are keen to talk with fishers about where and when they’ve fished, and sometimes also measure and weigh catches.

“The third method we use to build our recreational fishing surveys is to check remote camera footage from selected boat ramps along the coast, which helps us with 24-hour assessments of boat launches and retrievals.”

For more details on the new survey, go online to the Statewide recreational fishing survey.

Whether you fish a lot or only occasionally, please respond to the ECU surveyors if you are contacted by them.

Past surveys have enabled us to build useful profiles of fishing activity in the various bioregions – North CoastGascoyne CoastWest Coast and South Coast.