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Thank you for participating in the 2022/2023 National Survey of Recreational Fishers. Your efforts in replying and your accurate reporting are very appreciated.

Surveying recreational fishers catch (in addition to commercial and customary fishers) is vital to the assessment of the stock of marine species in New Zealand’s coastal waters. The data you provide is used to better understand the status of different species and to help in the sustainable management of these fisheries.

The survey is about the general public’s recreational fishing in coastal waters and runs from October 2022 to September 2023. As a survey participant, we are most interested to find out whether you went fishing (any method at all) in any week. If you did, we want to know what you caught, how and where. We also want to know when you didn’t go fishing, because this is how we build a statistical picture of our fisheries. We are surveying people ranging from the most frequent of fishers to those who fish only occasionally. Everyone’s answers are equally important.




We hope those invited into the survey will stay in it because they realise it is a much needed piece of research for the benefit of recreational marine fishers and the health of our coastlines and oceans. However, there is also a weekly prize draw of a $100 petrol voucher as well as 5 grand prizes of $1000 store credit at NZ Fishing and Hunting. We notify all winners and post there names here.
National Survey of Recreational Fishing prize draw winners.




This depends on how often we were told you normally fish in a year when you were recruited at your address. The time periods range from weekly to monthly based on this so that the schedule reflects your fishing activity, and frequently enough so that any trips and catch are still fresh in your mind.

If you feel you are being contacted too often or not often enough, just let us know during your phone interview and we will adjust to a preferred frequency. You can also email to let us know.



When we text you, please reply as it’s a quick and easy way to see who needs a follow up interview or who hasn’t fished. All text replies to us are FREE. Simply reply ‘Yes’ if you have fished in the time period in the text and “No” if you didn’t. Don’t add any other info, this will be collected in the phone interview. If you would like us to stop texting, just text reply ‘Stop’ or tell us when we call.

Please reply promptly to our texts so we can process all replies and add them to the week’s list of short follow up phone interviews. Texts go out Sunday night and we begin phone interviews on Monday night. Don’t worry if you occasionally forget or are out of range though, we’ll cover any missed time periods the following week.



Phone interviews have been proven to produce more responses and with more accuracy than fishers self completing interviews online. They are very brief and to the point, averaging only 6 minutes in length. We collect preferred times when we first visit you at your address but you can change these if your circumstances change, just let your phone interviewer know and we’ll make the adjustment to your records.



Some people like to write down a record of their fishing to help them remember. If you are one of those, you can download a template here. This is of course optional, and we’ll contact you regularly enough so that your memory of recent fishing is always fresh in your mind.



Some people will catch species they don’t recognise, or they may just want to check. When we first contacted you we will have given you a brochure that included images of commonly caught, and easily confused, marine species. For a pdf version download a copy of  the National Survey of Recreational Fishers Information Brochure.




You don’t need to know the precise location of where you fished, our interviewers will talk you through it when they ring. We need to place your fishing in one of the 51 areas we divide New Zealand’s coastline into. We don’t need your exact fishing spots and certainly won’t tell anyone else about them! If you are interested in finding out more about the areas we use, download fishing area maps here.


If you want any further information about the this years study, email If you’d like to read more about previous versions of the study, go to

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