NOAA says recreational fishing up 22%

Posted 4/24/24

Fisheries Economics of the US, released by NOAA Fisheries, shows recreational fishing in 2022 (the most recent data available)  had a dramatic increase compared to 2021. In an advisory last week …

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NOAA says recreational fishing up 22%


Fisheries Economics of the US, released by NOAA Fisheries, shows recreational fishing in 2022 (the most recent data available)  had a dramatic increase compared to 2021. In an advisory last week NOAA said,  ”Recreational fishing generated $138 billion in sales impacts marking a 22 percent increase from 2021 to 2022 and remains an important part of the U.S. tourism sector and coastal economies.”

In Massachusetts, the sales impact of recreational fishing without durable goods was $202,000,000 and in Rhode Island it was $73,000,000.  

The most frequently caught fish recreationally in 2022 were seatrout (Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico with 70.1 million fish), striped bass (Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico, 33.5 million fish), and summer flounder (Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico, 29 million fish).

The average guide fee expenditures for each state generally increased between the 2017 expenditure survey and the 2022 expenditure survey. The highest average regional guide expenditure was in the North Pacific ($767), and the lowest average was in New England ($151).

U.S. commercial and recreational fishing supported 2.3 million full- and part-time jobs in fishing and across the broader economy generating $321 billion in sales impacts and contributing $149 billion to gross domestic product. 

Here is a link to the 2022 Fisheries Economics of the US website and report: Fisheries Economics of the United States Report | NOAA Fisheries

Better Bay Alliance workshop on

Revolution Wind project

The Better Bay Alliance and Ørsted Marine Affairs will hold a presentation and panel discussion on construction of the Revolution Wind farm on Thursday, April 25, 5 to 6 p.m. at Innovate Newport, 513 Broadway, Newport, RI. 

The event will include discussions on the construction of the nearshore power cable as it enters the Bay from the windfarm. To register for the event visit Narragansett Bay Community Series: Revolution Wind Construction and Mariner Tickets, Thu, Apr 25, 2024 at 5 PM | Eventbrite.

Seasoned industry professionals, environmental advocates, mariners or those simply curious about the future of offshore wind energy are invited to attend. The event will provide an opportunity to gain firsthand knowledge and participate in discussions shaping the future of our oceans and energy landscape.

Where’s the bite?

Freshwater fishing. Anglers are encouraged to get out and fish in RI and MA as waterways have been stocked with trout.

Tom Giddings of the Tackle Box in Warwick, said, “Anglers are fishing stocked ponds for trout and are doing well.” 

“The largemouth and trout bite has been outstanding this past week.  We are just at the beginning of the pre-spawn period, so in a couple of days as the water warms the largemouth bite will do nothing but improve in the shallows. DEM in Rhode Island did a great job stocking once again this year. The trout last week were keying in on natural bait presentations which is unusual for newly stocked fish as they often are first interested in artificial baits until the acclimate,” said Jeff Sullivan of Lucky Bait & Tackle, Warren.  Dave Henault of Ocean State Tackle, Providence, said, “Trout waterways still producing for customers include Carbuncle Pond, Coventry and Olney Pond, Lincoln Woods.”

Striped bass. East End Eddie Doherty, Cape Cod Canal fishing expert and author, said, “School bass are coming into the Canal from Buzzards Bay and some small tautog have been landed.” 

Elisa Cahill of Snug Harbor Marina, South Kingstown, said, “At the beginning of last week we had migrating striped bass being caught at the West Wall of the Harbor of Refuge and then things slowed for the remainder of the week. Anglers fishing from the beaches are getting sporadic action too.”  “Migrating striped bass with lice on them are in Narragansett Bay. The herring came into the Bay, followed by Atlantic menhaden and then the striped bass were right behind them this week. Anglers are catching them in the Providence River, at Haines Park in East Providence and at the breachways along our southern coastal shore,” said Henault of Ocean State Tackle.

Sullivan of Lucky Bait & Tackle, said, “The striped bass bite are in Mt. Hope Bay and in the East Passage all the way up to the Providence River. We have a lot of adult Atlantic menhaden in the water, more than usual, but what seems to be working for anglers are top water, needle fish and shad lures.” 

Declan O’Donnell of Breachway Bait & Tackle, Charlestown said about spring bass migrating, “I usually search for structures that are located according to our predominate SW wind. These structures tend to hold bait and make great feeding grounds for migratory fish. Some of these sites include the West Wall, the western sides of the Breachway, and the area in front of Ocean Mist.”

Tautog fishing is improving in our Bays and along the coastal shore. Tom Giddings of the Tackle Box said, “Customers ae catching a lot of short fish in the Providence Fox Point and India Point areas but some nice keepers have been caught at Plum Beach Light in North Kingstown.” 

“Tautog fishing has been improving with fish being caught in Providence and in our estuaries like the Warren River.” said Sullivan of Lucky Bait & Tackle. Elisa Cahill of Snug Harbor Marina, said, “The tautog bite is pretty good. Anglers did well catching double digit fish south of Block Island last week, but also anglers are doing well at the breachways with customers catching five to six pound fish.  And some anglers are catching an occasional cod fish when tautog fishing.”

Dave Monti holds a master captain’s license and charter fishing license. He serves on a variety of boards and commissions and has a consulting business focusing on clean oceans, habitat preservation, conservation, renewable energy, and fisheries related issues and clients. Forward fishing news and photos to or visit

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