Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters

Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters

May 03, 2007 16:21 ET

Anglers work with C.O.'s to promote responsible, safe fishing

Attention: Assignment Editor, Environment Editor, News Editor, Sports Editor ONTARIO, JOINT-NEWS RELEASE:--(CCNMatthews - May 3, 2007) - The Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters (O.F.A.H.) and the Ontario Conservation Officers Association (O.C.O.A.) are working together to promote the responsible use of Ontario's fisheries during the upcoming open water fishing seasons. As summer approaches, hundreds of thousands of anglers take to the water in search of the "The Big One." At the same time, Ontario's Conservation Officers (C.O.'s) will also be spending time outdoors, ensuring that anglers are following the rules regarding both angling and safe boating.

O.C.O.A. President Dan VanExan, a field C.O. in Peterborough District, and O.F.A.H. Executive Director, Mike Reader, who are both avid anglers, joined forces to urge outdoors enthusiasts to make sure they practice safe and responsible behavior on the water.

"The O.F.A.H. has always believed that C.O.'s play an important role in the protection of our resources," said Mike Reader. "We welcome the opportunity to work with the O.C.O.A. to spread the message of conservation and responsible resource use."

VanExan added that, "Our officers are constantly working to ensure that our waterways are safe, and that our fish populations remain healthy. We look forward to working with the O.F.A.H. to ensure that anglers obey the law while on the water."

Before heading out for a day of fishing, both the O.F.A.H. and O.C.O.A. recommend that anglers take a few minutes to make sure that they are familiar with the following common regulations, found in the 2006 Fishing Regulations which are still in use until the 2008 regulations are released next year:

most Ontario residents between the ages of 18 and 64 require a license to fish, and must carry that license with them when fishing;

in most of Ontario, only one fishing line per person is allowed;

seasons and catch limits vary across the province; be sure to check the regulations summary for rules in the area where you plan to fish;

if you're fishing from a boat, there are rules in place to ensure that you have a safe day on the water;

you must have one personal flotation device or life jacket for each person in the boat;

the boat must also be equipped with the proper safety equipment; a paddle or anchor, bailing bucket, sound signaling device, and buoyant heaving line are mandatory on most fishing boats, including canoes. Larger vessels require more equipment.

"Our officers want to make sure that everyone obeys the laws, to maintain the quality of our fisheries, and to make sure that we don't have needless tragedies on our lakes and rivers," said VanExan, and the O.F.A.H. agrees with the need to follow the rules this summer.

"The O.F.A.H. has the utmost respect for both C.O.'s and the rules they enforce and I encourage everyone to have a safe and enjoyable fishing season," added Reader.

Anyone looking for more information regarding angling or boating rules can contact either their local C.O. or the O.F.A.H. Report resource violations by calling 1-877-TIPS-MNR (847-7667) or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).

For more information about our great outdoors, please visit our websites at www.ocoa.ca and www.ofah.org.

/For further information: Dan VanExan

Contact Information

  • Robert J. Pye, Communications Coordinator, Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters
    Primary Phone: 705-748-6324
    Secondary Phone: 705-313-1700
    E-mail: robert_pye@ofah.org