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Keen anglers ensure the future of our fisheries

Keen anglers ensure the future of our fisheries

Before you dispose of your fish frames, consider donating them to the Keen Angler Program. Boat Gold Coast asks Fisheries Queensland what it’s all about and how anyone can join in.

The Keen Angler Program is a monitoring program that collects valuable information about the length, age and sex of fish caught and retained by recreational fishers.

Fisheries Queensland  Keen Angler Program coordinator Robert Prosser said the biological information collected from monitoring programs is used to assess the status of many of Queensland’s fish stocks and to help assess the effectiveness of current management strategies.

“The monitoring programs use a number of sampling strategies to collect information about the retained catch of fishers with the Keen Angler Program being an important part,” Mr Prosser said. “In particular, the Keen Angler Program provides a large number of biological samples (frames) to the monitoring program that otherwise can be difficult to obtain, but are essential to determine the age of fish caught by fishers.”

Mr Prosser said the Keen Angler Program had been in place since August 2006 and relied on ongoing voluntary participation of recreational fishers. “We currently have 300 members across the state and receive on average 250 fish frames per month, though this varies from month to month according to seasonal fishing activities.

“We receive a large variety of species from Gold Coast fishers including snapper, pearl perch, dusky flathead, golden-line whiting, sand whiting, spotted mackerel, Spanish mackerel, tailor and yellowfin bream.”

Mr Prosser said members of the program included both occasional and avid fishers.

“You do not need to be experienced or to fish regularly to be a member of the Keen Angler Program; there are no minimum requirements for donations – every frame helps,” he said. “Each new ‘Keen Angler’ is provided with a sampling kit which includes instructions on how to donate frames, plastic bags to place the fish frames in, labels to record information about the catch, as well as a list of fish species that Fisheries Queensland monitor.”

Members can deliver the sample to a drop off location or store in a freezer, and contact the office to organise collection. Program updates including summaries of samples collected, interesting stories sent by the Keen Anglers, and access to fact sheets of monitored species are available to the members. Age information on prize catches are also available per request.

 

For more information, visit www.fisheries.qld.gov.au, call 13 25 23 or download the free ‘Qld Fishing’ app from Apple and Google app stores.

Results from Fisheries Queensland’s monitoring program are regularly published on www.fisheries.qld.gov.au, and information incorporating that collected through the Keen Angler Program is also published in formal stock assessments and most recently in Status of Australian Fish Stocks (December 2014).

Fisheries Queensland on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram (@FisheriesQld).

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