Project number: 2008-005
Project Status:
Budget expenditure: $267,562.96
Principal Investigator: James Andrews
Organisation: Agriculture Victoria
Project start/end date: 31 Jan 2009 - 29 Mar 2012


Recreational fisheries in smaller bays, estuaries and inland waters are complex and are typically characterised a variety of fish species caught using several different fishing methods. Fluctuations in the numbers of fish caught, however, may be influenced as strongly by habitat and environmental conditions as fish method. If RAD programs are to provide accurate, robust and defensible data on stock structure for fisheries management, the method must consider the importance of habitat and environmental variables.

Limited resources are available for monitoring, assessment and management of small-scale fisheries. Innovative, cost-effective monitoring and assessment methods must be developed and implemented to meet the needs of data acquisition in such fisheries.
Fisheries Victoria has developed and implemented an angler-based “Research Angler Diary” (RAD) program, to provide a time series of data on size and age composition, relative year class abundance and recruitment patterns for key target fish species in selected, small, data poor inland and estuarine recreational fisheries.

RAD programs are a new initiative in the collection of data for small fisheries, and are supported by research, management and key stakeholder groups because they are cost effective and directly engage recreational communities. However, here is a need to better define and coordinate the application of RAD programs to meet fishery management needs; to validate, analyse and maintain the quality and reliability of the information provided by research anglers; and, to identify, develop and test additional monitoring and assessment
methods to complement RAD programs where known limitations and/or additional fishery
management needs apply. This project addresses these needs by developing an innovative methodology to apply to small, data-poor fisheries throughout Australia.


1. To refine, validate and enhance the utility of RAD programs as a cost-effective tool for monitoring the status of key target fish stocks in small, data-poor recreational fisheries, and
2. To ensure that project findings on the utility and cost-effectiveness of RAD programs are communicated to all relevant stakeholders, researchers and fisheries management agencies.

Final report

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