The country of Australia is completely surrounded by water. The land was first inhabited by the British during the late 18th century. Since that point in time, the country’s residents have lived on the land. Some have taken to farming, but the country’s structure and close proximity to water make fishing a prime source of revenue and food. It is no coincidence that Aquaculture is the fastest growing industry in the country. It also makes up 34% of the seafood production for the country. The country’s reliance on fish has often led to an over exploitation and concerns that the renewable resource would be unable to replenish itself in time. Below, you’ll learn more about Australia’s fishing industry, its past, and its future.
It shouldn’t come as a surprise to learn that Australia is one of the biggest fish producers in the world. Over the past few years, the country has produced approximately 240,000 tons of fish annually. A third of this comes directly from aquaculture. From 2006 to 2007, 57,800 tons of fish were harvested. The revenues brought from the industry have also soared higher. During the 2007 and 2008 season, the country generated 868 million dollars from aquaculture production alone. And, the industry has been a major influencer on the country’s economy.
In 2008, the country’s aquaculture industry alone employed a little more than 7,000 people. It indirectly helped to employ 20,000 more. Today, the industry has hit a billion dollars and one vendor has decided to take their business online.
Species Of Fish In Australia
One of the biggest driving factors of Australia’s aquaculture is the country’s proximity to a diverse variety of fish species. In terms of freshwater fish, the country is inhabited by 280 different species. The most common include Murray Cod and the Australia bass. Less common freshwater fish in Australia include the Golden Perch, Sleepy Cod, Trout Cod, and the Queensland Lungfish. And, the country is also home to some Marine species of fish, including the Flat Needlefish and the Starry Triggerfish.
Aside from economical purposes, fishing in Australia has also become a popular pastime. Fishing charters Gold Coast and other fishing tours have experienced an influx of traffic within the past few years.
Thanks to the popularity of fishing in Australia, several entities have come together to better organize and manage the sport. The Australian National Sportsfishing Association, ANSA, and the Gamefishing Association Australia, GFAA, are two organizations, which oversee game fishing within the country of Australia. Both compile and maintain records of fish caught within the country and both have tournaments for fishermen and women residing within the country of Australia. Both organizations are comprised of separate clubs and they are home to thousands of members.
Despite the immense growth of Australia’s fishing industry, it has been hit with some controversy over the years. Thanks to trade arrangements with China, South Korea, and Japan, the country is often reliant on an importation of cheap seafood. The factory trawler, Geelong Star, has also faced some outrage from commercial and recreational fishers. Some have suggested that the ship has monopolized the NSW South Coast. In the future, this will most certainly set off a storm of debate and could lead to new restrictions on fishing companies within the country.
Nonetheless, Australia’s aquaculture will continue to thrive and grow larger, as long as the demand for delicious Australian fish remains at maximum levels.