Fishtory is an exciting new collaboration between the South African fishing community, scientists and conservationists. Fishtory was founded, as part of the FishforLife project, to better understand historical declines in fish stocks and to inform ways of safeguarding our fishing heritage for the next generations to enjoy. South Africa has a long history of recreational fishing and yet anglers around the country have voiced their concerns that some of their favourite recreational species have become hard to find, and that typical trophy sizes have fallen.
But without any reference points, how can we really understand the extent of these changes?
Enter Citizen Science.
Fishing communities possess a forgotten treasure in the form of old catch photos, angling journals and newspaper clippings. These records provide valuable insights into what stocks looked like over the past 100 years, and how distribution, composition and sizes have changed in that time. Our vision is ultimately one of healthy, stable fish populations enjoyed by a well-informed fishing community, supported by evidence-based and equitable fisheries management.
We invite you to be part of this vision by sharing your photos and becoming an integral part of the science that can help preserve our precious marine resources.