Fishing Participation Up 1.5 Million Since Last Year

The pastime is second only to jogging among adult outdoor activities, and it’s gaining ground.

A new study shows that, whether it's on freshwater or salt, adults love fishing. (Photo: Dieter Meyrl/iStock)

 

The Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation (RBFF) recently announced the release of its 2017 Special Report on Fishing. Most significantly, the report shows fishing participation has increased by 1.5 million over the previous year. Additionally, several exciting trends and participation increases among key segments are highlighted in the report.

KEY FINDINGS

  • Fishing is still the number two adult outdoor activity, but it’s gaining ground on jogging
  • 2.5 million participants tried fishing for the very first time
  • New participants accounted for 5.3 percent of the total participant base and tended to be young and female
  • 3.8 million Hispanics participated in fishing (an 11 percent increase)
  • Hispanic anglers go on six more outings per year than their general market peers
  • Youth participation increased three percent to 11 million total participants
  • Americans took 855 billion total fishing trips, equating to 18.8 trips per participant

 

“These findings energize us and provide some validation for the work we are doing on a daily basis,” said RBFF President and CEO Frank Peterson. “Our efforts to recruit new audiences and bring families to the water are certainly paying off. 60 in 60 is off to a great start, and effective R3 (recruitment, retention and reactivation) programs will only grow the participant base and secure funding for conservation programs for years to come.”

The Special Report on Fishing is the product of a partnership between RBFF and the Outdoor Foundation and looks into participation trends, barriers to entry, motivating factors, and preferences of key groups of anglers.

“Research shows that fishing is an essential piece of America’s outdoor tradition, and it often leads children to pursue outdoor activities and healthy living into adulthood,” said Ivan Levin, deputy director of the Outdoor Foundation. “This report aims to help the fishing industry, and the entire outdoor industry, understand fishing participation in order to engage even more people in recreational fishing and create the next generation of lifelong anglers and outdoor enthusiasts.”

The full report and an accompanying infographic is available in the RBFF Resource Center.

 

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