Kiwi anglers can log their catch and help create insight into fish stocks with New Zealand’s only free recreational fishing app.
Fish4All, available on iPhone and Android, was developed by two Kiwi recreational fishing enthusiasts Tony Craig and John Murphy, who launched a pilot trial in 2014.
Based on user feedback and with new business partner Katherine Short, Fish4All has launched a new version – including out of cell coverage data entry, allowing recreational fishers to record where, when and how many fish they catch and add more fish species to report against.
“As well as being a great digital fishing tool, every time you log your catch, you’re also helping create greater insight into New Zealand’s fish stocks by building the data critically needed to manage our fisheries,” says Tony.
With new business partner Katherine, Fish4All has also established the Fish4All Charitable Trust to manage and protect the data that is generated by users, ensuring it’s available exclusively by and for recreational fishing interests.
“New Zealand has more than 600,000 recreational fishers who are mad about the sport. And we’ve got more than four million other Kiwis who don’t go fishing but would probably like to think that communal resource is being fished responsibly,” say Tony.
“Fish4All is a way recreational fishers can enhance and enjoy their sport and help build a shared sustainable fishery for all.”
Fish4All has been welcomed by community fishing organisations including iwi groups such as Te Korowai, the Kaikoura Coastal Marine Guardians. Facilitator Peter Lawless says it’s essential to getting good information on recreational fishing on the Kaikoura coast.
“We are encouraging all our recreational fishers to use the app. The kids in our Curious Minds programme have been helping and showing their elders the new technology can be friendly rather than frightening,” says Peter.
Fish4All ensures user privacy is protected with only users able to view their own information, while everyone’s information can be pooled and collated into recreational catch effort locally, regionally and nationally.
Tony says the next step is to work with users to develop the fishing diary section so each user will have their own easy access records they can look up and see where they were fishing, bait they were using, weather condition, tide times – at the very same time each year.
“Ultimately, Fish4All is a great step toward looking after what New Zealanders consider a privilege and a right – a summertime fishing trip with fresh catch for dinner.”
Fish4All is running a summer fishing photo competition for app users and new users with winners to feature in the Winter edition of top fishing magazine ‘New Zealand Bay Fisher’ which supports the app. Fishers can enter through the Fish4all Facebook page.