How Many People Fish?

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Capt. Ed:
Hi All,

I was researching some information concerning National Fishing and Boating Week, which incidentally is June 2-10 this year, when I came across some interesting statistics regarding the number of people in the United States, over the age of six, that fish for recreation.

According to the latest U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service report, in 2001 (please note that a new survey is currently underway) 44 million people over the age of six go fishing. Thatís one out of every five Americans. According to the Sporting Goods Manufacturers Association, almost twice as many people fish than play golf.

You would think that recreational fisherman would be treated more fairly with season lengths, bag limits and minimum size requirements for keepers than they do. It must be a staggering amount of money that is spent yearly on fishing and yet our government officials keep taking the right (or is it a privilege) away through policies that are based on "bad science" at best. I am all for conservation of resources. However, if all the numbers are guesses, how do we know what problem we are really solving and when it is finally solved? Additionally, if we do not treat the ocean as the entire eco-system it is, how can we effectively manage any single particular species of fish?

Just something to ponder ...

Have fun,

Capt. Ed

Capt Craig:
Capt Ed, Thanks for the eye opening stats. great post. Could not agree more.

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