Historically, the saltwater recreational fishing community and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) have not always had a great relationship. Over the years this has changed and NOAA has put more emphasis and effort to learn about and from the recreational fishing community. This effort has allowed the two groups to strengthen their current relationship.
This week’s 2014 Saltwater Recreational Fishing Summit showcased this strengthening bond. The NOAA-hosted event brought together over 100 fishing industry leaders, scientists, fishery managers and interested observers to brainstorm new ideas for future management of saltwater recreational fishing.The Billfish Foundation was honored to take part in this summit again and TBF Board member, John Brownlee, was even a keynote speaker for the event. During the summit, many great discussions were had and NOAA took an active part to identify issuestroubling the saltwater recreational fishing community. NOAA, in a exceptional move, committed to develop a national recreational fishing policy during the closing of the summit. This is huge positive step for recreational saltwaterfishing industry and will hopefully resolve many of the fisheries issues facing the sportfishing community.