A Socio-Economic Evaluation of Sportfishing Activity in Southern Alberta

  • Author(s) / Creator(s)
  • Recreational fishing is one of the most important recreational activities in Alberta. The report on Sports Fishing in Alberta, 1985, states that over 340,000 angling licences were purchased in the province and the total population of anglers exceeded 430,000. Approximately 5.4 million angler days were spent were spent in Alberta and over $130 million was spent on fishing related activities. Clearly, sportsfishing is an important recreational activity and the fishery resource is the source of significant social benefits. A National Angler Survey is conducted every five years. However, the results of this survey are broad and aggregate in nature insofar that they do not address issues about specific sites. It is the purpose of this study to examine in detail the characteristics of anglers, and angling site choices, in the Southern region of Alberta. Fish and Wildlife agencies have collected considerable amounts of bio-physical information on fish habitat, water quality, biology and ecology. In this study the social elements of recreational fishing are examined. The bio-physical information helps define the potential supply of recreational fishing opportunities while the social/economic information helps define the demand for fishing opportunities. Why do individuals choose to participate in recreational fishing? How many times do they participate in a season? What are the factors affecting fishing intensity? Where do recreational anglers go? Why do they choose these sites? The answers to these questions will provide information on the demand for angling experiences and the attitudes and values of recreational anglers. This information will also help in planning habitat improvement, fish stocking and other management changes in response to angler demands or in an attempt to improve the quality of the recreational experience. Social/economic research in recreational fishing at a regional level is somewhat limited. This study represents the first major project in Alberta examining fishing demand at regional and subregional levels. The information should be valuable to fisheries managers as well as other parties interested in the fishery resource. This report presents the results of a survey of Southern region (Alberta Fish and Wildlife division Fish Management Areas 1 and 2) fishing activity. In this interim report descriptive results from the survey are presented. In subsequent research, models of fishing site choice will be developed. These models are designed to measure the impact of alternate uses of water resources on recreational fishing activity, the impact of management options (site closures, stocking, etc.) on site choice and recreational fishing experience. In the original research proposal the following research objectives were listed: (1) to develop a survey instrument and sampling design to collect the data required for the recreational demand model. (2) to use the data collected to analyze the demographic and socio-economic characteristics of sportfishing recreationists. (3) to develop a model of recreational fishing site choice using social, economic and physical information about recreationists and fishing sites. This interim report addresses objectives (1) and (2). The final report will address item (3).

  • Date created
  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Type of Item
  • DOI
  • License
    Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 3.0 International