A cast of thousands celebrate rec fishing

Australians across the country will be throwing a line in tomorrow to celebrate the first annual Gone Fishing Day.

Assistant Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources, Senator Anne Ruston, will help launch the event at Watson’s Bay in Sydney, along with a new code of practice to help ensure sustainable rec fishing.

“Gone Fishing Day is a time to celebrate recreational fishing and recognise the fact that it really is something at the core of our Australian identity—dropping a line in with your mates, regardless of your skill,” Minister Ruston said.

“It’s an exciting activity enjoyed by millions of Australians across the country, and tomorrow is the day that I’m encouraging everyone to drop a line.

“Recreational fishers play such an important a role in ensuring we continue to have some of the best managed fisheries in the world.

“That’s why the Coalition Government provided $550,000 over four years to help the Australian Recreational Fishing Foundation to provide national leadership on fisheries issues, including developing the new F.I.S.H Code of Practice for recreational fishing.

“This nationally-recognised code of practice will set the standard, and improve the knowledge and behaviour of all our fishers.

“It will ensure fishers have a greater sense of ownership of the code and lead to a stronger commitment to comply with fishing regulations and adopt acceptable standards.”

The structure of the code will follow four key themes that ask the fisher to:

  • Fishing – respect and appreciate the fish they catch
  • Interactions – respect other fishers and members of the community
  • Stewardship – demonstrate care for fish and the environment they fish
  • Habitats – respect, protect and restore our wildlife habitats.

“This government recognises the role of recreational fishing in promoting sustainable fishing practices through its role in community education and awareness,” Minister Ruston said.

“The government is working to amend fisheries legislation to strengthen recreational fishers’ voice in Commonwealth fisheries management, and I am also close to finalising a National Recreational Fishing Council to further improve sectoral engagement.

“Congratulations to the Australian Fishing Trade Association, Australian Recreational Fishing Foundation and Keep Australia Fishing for organising National Gone Fishing Day to highlight the many benefits recreational fishing provides to the wider community.

“I look forward to seeing this event continue to grow in years to come—just like the stories of many recreational fishers.”

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