FISHING - Getting your fish's measure

ANSA mat2_small.jpg ANSA mat2_small.jpg
ANSAmat3_small.jpg ANSAmat3_small.jpg

Impress your mates with an ANSA ‘brag’ mat

FISHING - Getting your fish's measure
Getting your fish's measure

It used to be that weight was the angler's measure. You caught a three-pound bream, landed a four kilo flathead, got a snapper nudging double figures. But now length is the rule, writes DAVID LOCKWOOD.

An extension of the permissible size limits as outlined by state fishing rules, today’s anglers now talk in centimetres instead of pounds, kilos or inches.

In NSW, for example, a 30cm bream is a keeper, 5cm above the legal limit in fact; a 65cm kingfish is right on the legal length; while we've all heard of the metre-long barra’ taken on a trip to the Top End.

Of course, anglers have evolved over many years with their own inbuilt measuring devices. Not just the expanding yarn, but the human tape measure. Y’know the one?

"How big was it?" asks your fishing mate. Almost involuntarily, you draw the arms apart. "Ahhh, she was this big, mate."

"How big?" comes the reply from your incredulous mate again. "Er, would you believe this big?" you respond, sheepishly reducing the distance between outstretched index fingers.

Realising that measured lengths are the new language, the Australian National Sportfishing Association (ANSA) has just released a fish measuring ‘brag’ mat to promote catch-and-release fishing and supplant the age-old angler's measure.

ANSA has also established All Tackle Length-Only records and awards for the new generation of cm-talking catch-and-release fishers. The Trophy Length for each eligible species has been picked to reflect what are special captures by almost any measure.

Of course, length and girth have long been used by gamefishers and marine biologists to estimate the size of fish that don't make the gantry. But now length counts for plenty with our smaller species of fish, too.

ANSA is selling the aforesaid ‘brag’ mats for $10 plus postage.
for details and further information about its new Trophy Lengths under the "Rule Book" menu.


Want the latest stories delivered straight to your inbox? Sign up for the free TradeBoats e-newsletter.