Some things remain a constant in our lives with a history that spans thousands of years. Fishing happens to be one of those things. Believed to have been first introduced between 40,000 and 10,000 BCE, fishing has evolved. What was once a solitary activity is a beloved hobby and competitive sport amongst many, and in this article, we’ll be exploring how this has come to be.
The Big Screen
Over the last decade, movie lovers have been blessed with fishing content as far as the eye can see. There’s YouTube, with free access to fishing guides, pastime videos and even the option to spectate some of the sports mentioned above.
For documentary enthusiasts, End Of The Line (2009) is a documentary about the act of unsafe, unregulated fishing around the world. In Heart Of The Sea (2015) follows true accounts of the elusive hunt for an extraordinarily large bull sperm whale.
It doesn’t stop there, though. Fishing has entered the public consciousness through other surprising mediums. Take online casinos, for example. Also growing in popularity, there are a plethora of fishing-related slots like Big Bass Amazon Extreme and the Fishin’ Frenzy slot where fans are met with recognisable themes like angling, bait and fishermen – everything a fishing fan will know and love. There’s the Pro Fishing Simulator, a single-player experience that lets you compete on global leaderboards with the opportunity to catch over 70 unique species.
If you’re unfamiliar with the phrase, ‘angling’, it’s simply fishing using a rod and line and can be dated back thousands of years. It’s a popular method amongst fishing newcomers, spawning several angling guides across the web. Research shows that there is a recent shift in how people are choosing to spend their time, with a vast majority of people looking to reconnect with nature with new hobbies – fishing being an obvious choice.
Heidi Stone, the Fisheries Partnerships Manager at the Environment Agency recently said: ‘Fishing has benefitted hundreds of thousands of people in the past year and is a great option for people who are looking for a long-term connection with nature.’
Sure, fishing is becoming a new favourite for casual anglers who enjoy a relaxed pastime. But fishing has also struck a chord for those with a competitive edge. So much so, that fishing is now well-received as a recognised sport.
There’s the Bisbee’s Black & Blue Marlin Tournament (also known as the Super Bowl of Sports Fishing) in Mexico, where experienced anglers compete to catch black and blue marlins in exchange for rewards. There’s also the International Billfish Tournament in Puerto Rico. Although fishing fans can still test their skills here, this tournament heavily focuses on sustainable, ecological practices within fishing.
From a plethora of video games, movie magic and sports to compete in, fishing has well and truly reeled us in. It’s an activity that lets us reconnect with nature, and as stated by the Environment Agency, is here to stay.