The FishforLife initiative will be launched in early 2016 as a national project to improve the knowledge base and stewardship of our recreational fishery resources. The project will raise awareness about the status of target species, the value of marine protected areas, best fishing practises and gather new data for the sector.
The project facilitates countrywide collaboration between the scientific community, the recreational angling community and ocean enthusiasts in order to capture and collate recreational angling data,
record species sightings and collect historical species images. The specific FishforLife project objectives are:
• To establish a network of active citizen scientists by providing opportunities for recreational anglers to improve data bases and knowledge of the stock and conservation the status of recreationally targeted fish species.
• To raise awareness about threatened linefish species, drawing from the IUCN global and National Redlists, and the role of MPAs in protecting these species. Threatened linefish species likely to receive focused attention in the project include the three categories below.
Critically endangered: The Dageraad (Chrysoblephus cristiceps) and the Seventy-four (Polysteganus undulosus). It is anticipated that following the re-introduction of fishing pressure on Red Steenbras (Petrus rupestris), this species is likely to fall within this category if re-assessed.
Endangered: Draft assessments indicate that Silver kob (Argyrosomus inodorus) and Dusky kob (Argyrosomus japonicas) are likely to join Red stumpnose (Chrysoblephus gibbiceps), and
White Steenbras (Lithognathus lithognathus) on the endangered species category.