This month I would like to highlight some of the Kid’s fishing days that have been run throughout the state for 2015-16. They are funded by Fisheries Queensland from the Recreational Use Fee.
This time we saw 1,287 children attend an event with 876 parents or carers assisting and 311 coaches and instructors. Events were held from one end of the state to the other. Some of these locations were Moreton Island, Bribie Island, Hayes Inlet, Raby Bay, Wivenhoe Dam, Cabbage Tree Creek, Caloundra, Burketown, Cloncurry, Mt. Isa, Dawson River, Paradise Dam, Kearney Springs, Broadwater, Quart Pot Creek, Mareeba, Townsville and Roma Street Parklands.
As soon as we have a new schedule, Sunfish will provide contact details for those events.
It was a hotter than normal April day, but the activity was a success; the kids had a great time and the principal said he hoped we continue to do this! The school use the event as a reward for good behaviour.
However all the ‘senior’ students eventually participated and enjoyed the day out of class with their friends.
They started the morning activity with a detailed rubbish clean up of the area. There was not much to be found since there is obviously a lot of community pride in Burketown. John Lane then did an excellent knot tying demonstration before we handed out the tackle boxes. Over about four hours of fishing only four catfish were caught. John then finished off with a talk on making your own lures, which was again well received by the students.
In previous years Suntag would simply drive up to Burketown from their camp at Gregory and was ably assisted by Landcare volunteers. John Lane drove up from Mount Isa with Ibby Conlon to help.
On Saturday 2 April 2016, the Pine Rivers Fish Management Association (PRFMA) conducted a Disabled Kids Fishing Day at Roma Street Parklands. This event was run along the same lines as the Lifestyle Kids Fishing Day events held at the same venue in previous years. Again, the event was sponsored and promoted by the Roma Street Parklands management with PRFMA acting in a service provider role.
Like previous events, Roma Street management promoted the event to a number of groups. One group known as Sensory Movie Day was particularly keen to take up the offer and filled 23 of the 25 available spaces on the opening day of bookings. That interest continued right up to the day and a full field of 25 children attended. This was probably also due in part to the fine weather encountered on the day.
The same event in 2014 resulted in a staggering catch of 122 fish in just two and a half hours. Unfortunately, this could not be repeated in 2016 when only 29 fish were caught. However, it was the quality of catch not the quantity that caused a lot of excitement.
The lake at Roma Street is home to a small population of lungfish, and two of these cooperated by taking the bait. Although they were too big to get in the net, they certainly generated a lot of interest. A few children managed to catch two and three fish each and some did not catch any at all, but nobody seemed to mind. It was the act of getting out and partaking in an activity that kept everyone satisfied.
The event was again well supported by suppliers. Tackle World at Lawnton were able to use their influence with Jarvis Walker who provided caps, watches and sunglasses free of charge. Northside Marine also came to the party with more caps and gift bags. At the end of the day all the children received the usual rod, reel and tackle pack as well as the items just mentioned.
In conclusion, the event was a success despite the low number of fish caught. It is not hard to see that the same event in 2017 will generate the same interest. Let’s hope the fish cooperate next time.
The fishing day held by Cloncurry PCYC recently also went very well. Everyone involved had a great time, enjoying the period after all the rain.
The PCYC were delighted to meet some splendid young anglers, and are sure many of them will go on to be a credit to their community.
The instructors were Chad Hopkins, John Blackman and Judy Lynne. The Sunfish Junior Fishing Days program is funded by the State Government Department of Fisheries and is coordinated around the state by Sunfish Queensland, the peak recreational fishing body. It is delivered locally by members of the Mount Isa Fish Stocking Group.
On the day, the young anglers caught plenty of spangled perch and a few eel-tail catfish.
Biggenden Fishing Club had a fantastic day holding their annual Junior Kids Fishing Day. There were 27 children registered, but due to the school holidays only 23 turned up for the day. The day started at 9am and presentations finished the day at 1pm.
Many of the children talked their parents into staying longer so that they could keep fishing. They had a very enthusiastic bunch of kids! They not only behaved, but listened and learned from the both instructors.
Every child caught a fish of some description. A tilapia was also caught, and this gave the Instructors the opportunity to show the children as to why this fish is a pest. It was more interesting showing them the actual fish, as a photo does not quite fully explain it.
The Instructors also showed and explained the dangers of being spiked with fins on certain fish that were caught such as catfish.
Overall, a great day was had by all, and they can hardly wait until next year.Reads: 131