The weather may have been miserable but spirits were high at Tenterfield Dam on Sunday, October 15 with the Gone Fishing workshop attracting 47 keen anglers.
While the workshop may have given another meaning to ‘wet a line’, organiser Michael Davey said he’s confident of getting a few converts to the pastime. Mr Davey is a DPI FishCare volunteer as well as being president of OzFish Tenterfield.
“It was a fantastic turnout,” he said. “I was really impressed.”
Thirty-five children got involved, aged from five years up. Mr Davey said it was great to see a strong representation from boys in the years 7 and 8 stage of high school, and he estimated that for around 40 per cent of participants it was their first time fishing.
He said the next step for them would be to pester mum and dad to take them fishing, although from the feedback he’s received they will be happy to do so.
Each of the children went home from the workshop with a rod and reel and all the gear they’ll need, thanks to DPI Fisheries’ Gone Fishing grant which sponsored the day. The event was jointly organised by the DPI and OzFish Tenterfield volunteers.
Mr Davey said he was impressed by the enthusiasm of those at the workshop. The students seems to enjoy the practical information they received on the sport, without becoming too overloaded.
“Hopefully they will become just as mad about fishing as I am,” he said.
Thanks to the positive feedback he has received, he is aiming to make the fishing outings a more regular event, especially once cod season officially opens on December 1. All fish caught during the workshop were strictly on a catch-and-release basis.
Along with the grant, the day was made possible through the support of community and Mr Davey thanked them for their input, particularly Tenterfield Shire Council for allowing the outing to proceed.
The Tenterfield Lions Club had its catering van on-site, and a welcome sight it was in the dreary weather. Thrifty-Link Hardware came on board with some safety gear, and of course the Fishcare and OzFish Tenterfield volunteers were out in force to make the day a success.
When it comes down to future fishing in Tenterfield Dam, “hopefully we’ve started a conversion.” Mr Davey said.