Whether fishing on lakes, rivers, streams, or seas, millions of Americans were united in 2022 by the love of fishing. For the thirteenth consecutive year, OIA’s philanthropic arm, Outdoor Foundation, has partnered with the Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation (RBFF) to produce the Special Report on Fishing.
The report provides a comprehensive review of fishing participation trends, including detailed information on specific fishing categories and audiences. Here are some key findings from the report:
- In 2022, 54.5 million Americans ages 6 and over took to the nation’s waterways to enjoy recreational fishing, a 4 percent increase from 2021.
- Fishing participation among Hispanic people ages 6 and over has increased about 45 percent over the last decade.
- Over the last decade, female participant numbers grew nearly 4 million, from 16 million in 2012 to 19.8 million in 2022. Females represented 36 percent of total anglers and 42 percent of first-time participants.
- New anglers are younger, more diverse, and highly socially connected.
- Only 18 percent of anglers typically fished alone, reiterating that fishing remained a shared activity in 2022.
Data continues to underscore the critical importance of introducing fishing at a young age, as 86 percent of current fishing participants fished before the age of 12. That’s why programs like Outdoor Foundation’s Thrive Outside Initiative are so important, as they help youth access the outdoors – youth participation in Thrive Outside increased 175% in 2022. Learn more about our work to make the outdoors more equitable and accessible here.