Tidal Talk December 2001

I think I've mentioned before that I went to New Zealand last year to look at their fishery management and to talk about communication. I remember expressing my surprise at the discovery there are no flathead in new Zealand .....but they do have snapper and blue cod.

Well, while I was at that conference (incidentally, I was one of  four Ausies and a dozen Kiwis) I must have said something right - this year they all agreed to meet in Tasmania.
Dear reader, I am happy to report that the meeting has just taken place at Bronte Park and it has brought Tasmania great credit.
 From the modest NZ beginning,  it grew like a snowball collecting four Kiwis and ten interstate visitors who were mixed up with  about 20 Tasmanians including my group, police and Inland Fisheries Staff.
The group of people were really dedicated and passionate about "fish for the future" programs.
The Minister's column in this edition mentions some of the achievements made by the group during the conference so I won't go into that detail.
The clear message, though, was that "fish for the future" programs are in safe hands right across the nation and we are now all heading in the same direction.
By the way, the Natural Heritage Trust Helped fund the conference.
The trust has been of enormous help to Tasmania and indeed to some of the other States in the development of "fish for the future" programs.  
Without the assistance of the Natural Heritage Trust there would not be a Fishcare Volunteer program as we know it today nor would we have the display vans or the associated education programs including the TV advertising that has been developed over the last few years.  
A real challenge facing us now is to make sure that the new Natural Heritage Trust will continue to support education and awareness programs like Fishcare.
On a lighter note, one in four of the people attending the Conference choose to try their skill at fly fishing with Peter Hays and Mike Stevens who generously donated their skill and equipment for a day on Arthurs Lake.
It was a bright day with very few fish about.
Indeed there were only two fish caught but they were very special to the two fishers as they were their first trout on a fly.  
The well established veterans and experts had no luck at all.
I love seeing people take their first fish on a fly. Thanks Mike and Peter.

Well its Christmas time again.
It's a great time for fishers but not so good for turkeys and fish.
Please take care on the water and check the rules before you fish.
It's much better to spend up on presents rather than lose your money on fisheries fines.
Have a great Christmas and remember - fish for the future.

John Smith

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