Florida Sea Grant Extension in Collier County

Welcome to the Collier County Sea Grant Extension Blog

This blog is an opportunity for me to share with you my extension outreach efforts and useful information to make you a more informed coastal citizen. If you have any questions about what you see, feel free to contact me at fluech@ufl.edu.

Search This Blog

Friday, July 29, 2011

Day 5 Collier County Fishing Camp: Final Day!

Today I wrapped up my final fishing camp of the summer. It has been a busy week, but the students ended on a high note catching lots a fish in the lakes around Freedom Park. Students started the day with an impromptu lesson on sharks from Barry. He brought in some shark jaws and a sting ray barb for the students to look at and touch. As with most of my camps we ended the week with the students having to rig their rod and reel from scratch. For doing this, we tell them they can keep the fishing poles, which is always a great moment. It never gets old seeing the look on their faces when they realize they get to keep it. The fishing gear is donated by Fish Florida, an non-profit in Florida dedicated to promoting youth sport fishing. They have always been a big supporter of my programs, and I can't thank them enough! (just to let you know the purchase of the Fish Florida license plate they sponsor helps to support youth fishing programs such as this camp.)
Besides rigging their own fishing poles, Barry and I also told the group they were essentially on their own while fishing meaning we expected them to tie their own knots, untangle their tangles, and release their own fish. I'm happy to report the students did an excellent job!  Most were very self sufficient while fishing, which is a major goal of the camp. Although I could tell they were frustrated at times while trying to re-tie a knot or undo a tangle, they were able to work through these minor setbacks. The fishing was hot today. The  students caught lots of fish including largemouth bass, blue tilapia, bluegill, redeared sunfish, and Mayan cichlid. After fishing for two and half solid hours, we came inside to relax. We discussed the importance of securing loose fishing line and the impacts discarded line can have on wildlife. We watched a short video on the Monofilament Recovery and Recycling Program and then had them create their own mini fishing line recycling bins from used tennis ball cans. We ended the camp with multiple rounds of fish identification bingo where they had the opportunity to win dehooking tools, fish posters and ID books, and lots of tackle. Enjoy the pictures!

Barry explains about the importance of sharks to the marine ecosystem

Add caption

working on rigging their fishing poles

A nice 4.5 pound bass

A happy camper with his tilapia

Making mini-fishing line recycle bins

Fish ID Bingo

Freedom Park

No comments:

Post a Comment