Love Fishing Love Nature
There are many reasons why we love fishing. The anticipation as your float trots down a river, the excitement every time there’s a bend in the rod, the joy when you slip your net under a potential PB. But for many – if not most – anglers, the real reason we love fishing is being at one with nature. Of the thousands of anglers recorded in the National Angling Survey, almost 90% said that experiencing nature and scenery, and escaping crowds and noise was important to them. As anglers, we are also aware of the health and mental wellbeing benefits that being outdoors provides, and the many surprises and magical moments we encounter from being next to water.
Love Fishing Love Nature aims to highlight just that – anglers’ love for the great outdoors, and showcase the great work many clubs, fisheries and individuals are doing to protect the environment and the waters we fish. This work has never been so important as it is today, with climate change, pollution, biodiversity loss and water scarcity threatening the very environment and waters we love as anglers.
Do you #LoveFishingLoveNature? We want to share your pictures with the story behind them. Whether your love is coarse, carp, fly, lure or sea fishing, capture that special moment with nature in pictures and video, to show us why you love fishing and nature so much.
We also want to hear about how you, your club or your fishery are making a real difference to the environment, too. Maybe you are restoring habitats, constructing bird and bat boxes, helping to protect delicate marine ecosystems, or improving breeding conditions for endangered species – whatever it is, we want to hear about your project.
Please send your Love Fishing Love Nature stories and pictures to Emily Smith, Environment Manager via email: [email protected]
If you require further information please contact Emily on 07854 239713 or via [email protected]
You can now also buy Love Fishing Love Nature clothing in our new online shop!
If you share your pictures on social media, don’t forget to use the hashtag #LoveFishingLoveNature and tag the Angling Trust!
In the Colne Valley, a region famous for its coarse fishing and home to a large network of gravel pit lakes and rivers, a project is taking place between anglers and conservation groups that epitomises all that the Love Fishing Love Nature campaign aims to achieve.
Colne Valley Fisheries Consultative, which represents the interests of local angling clubs, are working collaboratively with Herts & Middlesex Wildlife Trust to highlight the role anglers play as stewards of the environment and to support clubs wishing to maximise the positive impact their fisheries can have on fish and wildlife.
The wildlife found on some fisheries can rival that inhabiting some of the most impressive nature reserves. Anglers are often the eyes and ears for the environment and in the Colne Valley they play an important role in the protection of rare habitats such as fen meadow, reedbeds, meadow grassland and wet woodland.
With support from the National Lottery Heritage Fund, Colne Valley Fisheries Consultative and the Herts & Middlesex Wildlife Trust ran the Fisheries and Wetland Management Scheme, a five-module accredited course covering a diverse range of topics including fish biology and health, fisheries legislation, wetland habitat management and algae and silt control.
It gave angling clubs the knowledge to design their own management plans, and the follow up and funding support from the Wildlife Trust facilitated the implementation of the plans. The upskilling of the anglers gave a real sense of ownership and confidence knowing that what they were doing was best for the environment as well as for the fishing.
The opportunity to collaborate with Colne Valley Fisheries Consultative and individual angling clubs allows the local Wildlife Trust to restore nature and create a living wetland landscape. Thanks to the efforts of the project, wildlife is thriving in the area with some venues being home to kingfishers and others having an established water vole population – one of the UK’s rarest mammals – flourishing alongside traditional fisheries management.
Lydia Ennis from Herts & Middlesex Wildlife Trust said:
“So many anglers said to me they enjoy being outside and being part of nature as much as the fishing experience itself. I thought – bang, we have something in common! We started on that basis and looked at what we can achieve together. It’s been a joy to work with the anglers in the Colne Valley, their proactive approach to fishery management and conservation is testament to how much they care.”
Tony Booker, chairman of the Colne Valley Fisheries Consultative, said:
“The success of the project has been about the collaboration between angling clubs and the Wildlife Trust. People realise there is a bigger picture outside of fishing and they want to buy into that.”
Liberty Denman, Environmental Projects Officer added:
“Seeing how quickly real change can come about when we work together based on our common ground is heart-warming. The difference the anglers and Wildlife Trust have made to the Colne Valley already is astonishing, and I know they won’t stop there.”