It’s official: Kiwis big on boating

Media coverage of this year’s Boat Show in Auckland highlighted recent data released by the New Zealand Marine Industry Association. That is, the Association says around two million Kiwis participated in boating activities during the last 12 months. This makes boating the country’s largest leisure activity with 40% of the population participating.

We know the majority of those who go boating put a line or pot in the water and collectively take a significant share of available fisheries resources. It follows that the importance Kiwis place on fishing for a feed warrants recognition and management attention.

Fish Mainland Inc finds ways to help the Government recognise the importance of recreational fishing, such as taking a proactive, forward looking, and cooperative approach towards representing recreational fishers’ interests and improving data collection to better inform management decision making.

Mainland Catch – South Island marine recreational fishing app

Fish Mainland recognises the first step towards improving decision making for managing recreational fishing is better data collected on catch and effort. And the best source of data is recreational fishers.

South Island fishers can collect their data via a mobile app appropriately named Mainland Catch. Mainland Catch is an intuitive and simple app designed by Fish Mainland.

A single person can record data for all members of a fishing group. Your personal data is confidential and will not be made public. Only in aggregated form (e.g., regional) will data be available to the public and to the Ministry for Primary Industries. The data collected will be stored with the app developer, the Nelson-based Plink Software Ltd.

The benefit of the data is in providing a basis for action or a recommendation to improve fisheries that are important to recreational fishers. Better data may also provide a basis for reducing environment impacts.

Mainland Catch was first developed for the South Island blue cod fishery. We are currently working with Plink Software to expand Mainland Catch to include other fisheries that are important to South Island recreational fishers.

Our current focus is on Mainland Catch’s use in the recreational Kaikōura coastline pāua fishery that is scheduled to be open until 15 June.

We are also assisting the Fiordland Marine Guardians (FMG) in gathering recreational catch and effort data for the icon blue cod and hapuku fisheries.

Opportunities for the FMG also include collecting data on southern bluefin tuna and other emerging fisheries to address potentially huge influxes of fishers. Mainland Catch can provide much needed data to assist the Guardians in formulating the best management recommendations.

We encourage all fishers to do their part in sustaining fisheries by fishing within set limits and using Mainland Catch to record their catch and effort data.

Our website has links to download Mainland Catch and videos on how easy it is to use: www. fishmainland.nz/mainland-catch-app

Our website also steps you through becoming a Fish Mainland member, which is free. If you support our work, you can also donate through the website or via direct debit to our bank account 03 0823 0101056 000.

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