'Reel in' great prizes in new Sea Angling 2012 surveys

Join thousands helping Sea Angling 2012 – the largest-ever survey of the sport in the UK – to show the value of the sport and the state of our fish stocks. All anglers, beginners and experts alike, are urged to go online at www.seaangling2012.org.uk to complete the new surveys that are now available. By doing so they will raise the profile of sea angling in government and give scientists more insights into the health of our fish stocks, as well as having a chance to bag some top-notch gear in prize draws.

The new online catch survey will show when and where anglers went fishing from boat or shore during April to June this year, what fish they caught, and how the fishing compared with previous years. Anglers are also urged to complete the online economic questionnaire, which is running throughout 2012, to show how much they spend on sea angling and the other benefits they get from the sport.

Headed up by the Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (Cefas), along with social research co-operative Substance and the Marine Management Organisation (MMO), the project is using a variety of online surveys and direct interviews of anglers around the coast to obtain an accurate picture of sea angling in England. Substance is also conducting five regional case studies.

Project Manager, Cefas’ Mike Armstrong, said:We are carrying out these surveys to build a clear picture of sea angling activity and its economic and social benefits. Even if you are just a beginner, or don’t catch much – we want to hear from you.”

“It’s really positive that thousands of sea anglers have already participated in the surveys”, he continues, “and we believe they are convinced the results will give sea angling a bigger voice in the development of marine policy.”

Adam Brown, Director of Substance, said: “It is vital that sea angling can demonstrate what it is worth – both economically and socially. The more anglers that contribute to this study, the more powerful that message will be.”