WELCOME to the Wednesday blog – each week filled by Angler’s Mail.

This week’s Angler’s Mail HQ blog is by news editor Thomas Petch (right).

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WHAT FUTURE IS THERE WITH JUNIOR LICENCES 44 % DOWN?

 

THERE’S worrying news in this week’s Angler’s Mail magazine with a reported 44 per cent drop in junior rod licences for the April to June period between 2009 and 2013.

 Our very own John Bailey was called to the BBC Breakfast studios to discuss the issue which certainly is worrying.

But is it all doom and gloom? Figures like this don’t lie at all but is angling participation for that age group that far down? Could kids just be going fishing without a licence?

I know the Environment Agency would never ever prosecute anybody of 12-15 for not having a junior licence so have kids wised up to it and decided a fiver is worth saving as they won’t be checked and if they are won’t be taken to court?

From what fishery owners and tackle shops tell me I’d say the trade is struggling for numbers and undoubtedly kids aren’t fishing as much.

There’s just so much for kids to do nowadays and even my own seven-year-old son sometimes gets obsessed with his Xbox or Nintendo DS. He can work an ipad better that knowing what an Optonic is but that sadly is second nature to our kids today.

FREE LINE with this week’s Angler’s Mail – in shops from Tuesday, July 23.

I have taken him fishing a few times this year and have quite a few fishing (and crabbing) trips planned for him for the school holidays. He’s really looking forward to crabbing with the drop net again while we go camping in Dorset next week, like we did in the picture above, last year.

But it is up to angling parents like me to get their kids away from the computer games and into the natural environment which is far healthier and better for them.

There’s also some great schemes to gets kids and novices fishing like National Fishing Month, Get Hooked On Fishing and schemes like the I Love Fishing which is the brainchild of Preston Innovations’ supremo Sarah Phoenix.

There’s never been a better time to get kids fishing with commercials having toilets and fish on tap so it is up to everyone who loves the sport to get new generation fishing.

Don’t think about taking your kids fishing  – just do it during these summer holiays.

 

LIKE OF THE WEEK

ANGLING numbers might be slightly down but its nice to see even the best football player in the world Cristiano Ronaldo is a keen angler (see page 3 of AM magazine)! Personally I’d put him equal top right now with Lionel Messi but Ronaldo edges it for me, knowing he likes to fish – as reported in this week’s issue! Us Angler’s Mail boys also play football, and me and production editor Richard Holroyd represented IPC Media in 5-a-side tournament next to Wembley Stadium last night run by Sky TV. I captained the team and we played well throughout our five games, easily topping our group and narrowly missing out in a spot in the final by losing 2-1 in the semi-final. We missed a few good chances at the end including a half open goal and somebody (Richard!) hitting the crossbar with our easiest chance of the night!

 

DISLIKE OF THE WEEK

PEOPLE moaning about the hot weather! We had an awful winter and spring and now people are whining about it being hot! Enjoy it or stay indoor with a fan on! Anglers should be looking at fishing at dawn and dusk for the best sport while it is like this and if your locals lakes and rivers are a bit poor in the heat – why not take your heavier gear down to the coast and do a bit of sea fishing? There’s still good sport to be had no matter what the weather is like!

 

VIDEO OF THE WEEK

Longleat Fishing Show – Pallatrax boss Simon Pomeroy showed Angler’s Mail how to create a stunningly active method feeder mix.