Freshwater Fisheries Society of B.C. Programs Popular For Children and Teens
Does the word Flasher evoke images of exhibitionists in trench coats?
How about Hoochie? I think that's an exotic dancer, isn't it?
Or an Egg Sinker? Isn't that how you tell if your eggs are boiled?
If you're a fisherman, you'd know all of these are actually fishing gear. Maybe you've never really done much fishing or don't know much about it and would really like the youngsters in your life to have the opportunity to learn. Well, you're in luck. The Freshwater Fisheries Society of B.C. (FFSBC) offers programs that will provide young people with a terrific tackle box of techniques and how to information to help reel in some great water adventures.
Get Out Your Tackle Box: What Does the Program Cover?
The program is hands on fishing. Participants learn how to tie knots, how to cast and retrieve, how to handle fish properly as well as detailed information about rods, reels and tackle, and safety issues. There are different kinds of fish that inhabit local waters and information about identifying each species and its biology will be shared. Teaching is usually done off shore or from docks at various lake locations. The types of fish depends on the lake site and time of year, but usually the program targets rainbow trout. All fishing tackle and equipment is provided.
A Program that Casts to the Future: A Look at Ethics
The Learn to Fish programs in Victoria primarily emphasize catch and release fishing, a technique whereby the fish are unhooked and released back into the water. In this way fish have a chance to grow and reproduce for future generations. Participants learn about protecting the environment, local and provincial fishing regulations and proper fish handling.
"Single barbless hooks are used at all locations," say Tanya Laird, Outreach Coordinator for the Society, in an email interview. "We recommend everyone use these even when legally allowed to use other types of hooks."
Programs and Registration
Two local programs are happening soon:
- In Langford at Lake Ida Anne on Wednesday, August 19th from 6:00 to 8:00 pm. Register by phone at 250.886.1488.
- At Elk Lake in Saanich on Saturday, August 22nd from 10:00 to 1:00 pm. Register by phone through Westshore Recreation at 250.478.8384.
Each program is open to registrants age 5 to 15 with accompanying adults. It's an opportunity to enjoy the great outdoors and introduce young people and families to fishing. Typically, the programs are either free or by small donation.
For those wanting just basic theory, there is a provincial park program being hosted at Goldstream Park on Friday, August 21 from 7:00 to 8:00 pm. Participants are asked to meet at Goldstream Campground Amphitheater. This session is a lesson only program and does not include practical fishing time.
Freshwater Fisheries Society of B.C.
All these courses are part of a province-wide learn to fish program being offered by the Freshwater Fisheries Society of B.C., a non profit organization that focuses its efforts towards conservation and preservation of BC's freshwater fisheries. The project began in 2006 and since then has drawn interest and healthy registrant numbers.
Says Tanya Laird, "There are over 80 different locations in total and we get about 25,000 participants each year."
The program instructors are all members of the Freshwater Fisheries Society of B.C. In addition, staff includes students who are hired specifically for this program from May to August. Their skill and experiences levels vary, but all share a keen enthusiasm for fishing.
With the continuing great weather, it's the ideal opportunity for younger generations to "hook onto" to a new activity and to "catch" a personal glimpse of the eco-systems around us.
PEETZ Outdoors extends a warm thank you to Tanya Laird and FFSBC for sharing this information with us and for inspiring future generations of anglers about our important resource and the values of preservation and sustainability.