So, on my recent fishing trip, I got to thinking about what it is that makes anglers from all over the province and from regions far and wide; converge on their favourite fishing hot spots for days at a time?
Could it be that we go to see the mystic fog rise from the waters at break of day?
Could it be that we do this for the picturesque settings we so often see in remote lakes and rivers?
Could it be for the opportunity to tell fish tales?
Could it be for the sunsets and sunrises? Could it be that we travel for hundreds and hundreds of miles to sit in cold, wet boats, sleep in mice infested cabins, spend hours and hours hunting for that elusive fish, you know, the one that got away from the other guy’s line?
It’s for the moment when the prey meets predator…the strike. Fish on!
In Ontario, recreational fishing is governed through a complex set of laws and regulations, aimed at balancing recreational and economic interests with long-term conservation and management of fish stocks. The federal Fisheries Act protects and conserves fish and fish habitat. The Ontario Fish and Wildlife Conservation Act governs the issuances of fishing licences. Anglers must ensure that they have obtained the appropriate licences. They are also regulated in terms of where and when they may fish (open and closed fishing seasons); how many fish of a particular fish species they may catch and keep; the size of the fish that may be caught; and the type of gear and bait that may be used to catch fish.
Ontario’s fisheries contribute substantially to Ontario’s economy, with recreational and commercial fishing valued at more than $2.5 billion annually:
- 41,000 person years of employment.
- More than 1.2 million residents and non-resident anglers, contributing $2.2 billion annually to the Ontario economy.
- A driving force for Ontario’s tourism industry and a key economic component in many communities, particularly in Northern Ontario, with 1600 licensed tourist operators generating hundreds of millions of dollars in revenues annually.
- More than 500 active commercial fishing licences, contributing more than $230 million dollars to the Ontario economy.
- 1200 commercial bait fishing licences are issued annually, with $17 million in direct sales of live bait.
I knew you would understand.