We tested for differences between tournament and nontournament black bass anglers in their motives for fishing, attitudes, and demographic characteristics. Fewer than one-fifth (17.8%) of black bass anglers in Texas participated in black bass fishing tournaments. Tournament anglers were younger, fished more frequently, and were more likely to be male and belong to fishing clubs than nontournament anglers. Tournament anglers viewed themselves as more skilled than nontournament anglers. Also, tournament anglers differed significantly from nontournament anglers on each of 7 catch-related motives studied and on 2 of 10 noncatch motives (“experience adventure and excitement” and “experience new and different things”). Tournament anglers differed significantly from nontournament anglers on 11 of 15 attitudinal statements regarding catch. Our results were generally consistent with those from two previous studies of saltwater tournament anglers. Differences between tournament and nontournament anglers also were consistent with predictions based on the concept of recreation specialization and suggest that tournament anglers represent a relatively more specialized angler group than do nontournament anglers. Among nontournament anglers who had fished while a tournament was in progress, 51% believed tournaments negatively affected their fishing quality and 44% did not believe that most fish released at tournaments survived. These perceptions, as well as differences between nontournament and tournament anglers in the specific types of fisheries they prefer, probably will lead to conflict within the black bass fishery if they are ignored by fisheries managers. Nontournament anglers may become alienated and oppose management actions if they believe tournament anglers are favored in allocation decisions or management strategies, particularly because many nontournament anglers believe tournaments are detrimental to both their fishing activity and the fishery resource.
|Number of pages
|North American Journal of Fisheries Management
|Published - May 1998