A web-based survey was administered to state fisheries agency administrators in 2005 to assess and prioritize the impacts of tournament fishing on management of inland fishery resources. Surveys were completed by fishery administrators of 48 state agencies and the District of Columbia. Respondents rated tournaments as neither strongly benefiting nor adversely affecting fishery management. Benefits of tournaments to fishery management grouped into four factors (in order of decreasing impact) characterized as enhancing fishery management agency effectiveness, stimulating interest in fishing and fishery resources, measuring economic value, and collecting biological information. Adverse impacts grouped into six factors (in order of decreasing impact), characterized as resource crowding, user-group conflicts, costs of tournaments to fishery agencies, non-traditional uses of fisheries resources, fish introductions, and adverse affects on fish populations. Tournament issues and impacts generally did not differ regionally and suggested the effects of tournaments do not vary among different fisheries. Comparison with previous surveys indicates that the prevalence of some benefits and problems have changed since 1989. Social issues remained paramount problems, but biological impacts were considered a lesser problem. Agencies recognized that tournaments can benefit fisheries management efforts and angler recruitment. Future management of tournaments should consider a management team approach.
Additional publication details
Issues, benefits, and problems associated with fishing tournaments in inland waters of the United States: A survey of fishery agency administrators