Kids get hooked
Hundreds of aspiring young anglers hooked themselves a trout dinner after being taught how to cast a line at Hokowhitu Lagoon.
Fish and Game’s annual Take a Kid Fishing Day returned to Hokowhitu Lagoon on Sunday, attracting more than 400 children under the age of 12, keen to catch a big one.
Fish and Game regional manager Phil Teal said a tank of 750 rainbow trout worth about $7000 was driven down from Rotorua and the fish released into the lagoon on Friday.
Teal said the fish were mostly 2 years old, with a few, bigger 3-year-old trout in the mix.
‘‘The children have a lot of fun - for many it’s something they’ve never had a chance to do before, and this ticks that box off.
‘‘But about 20 per cent are going to keep fishing, and have a lifelong hobby.’’
The children were guided by experienced members of the Manawatu¯ Freshwater Angling Club, which supplied the fishing rods for the event.
The fish were kept in pens near the shore while the children learnt to fish.
Any left over at the end of the day were let out into the wider lagoon for any fisher with a licence to catch.
Flynn Pocock, 5, and sister Emily Pocock, 9, set their lines right next to each other at 10am.
It was the first time Flynn had been fishing, and he was determined to do it better than his sister.
It only took him a minute to get a bite, and he managed to reel in the first trout he hooked.
He proudly showed off his catch as he marched down to the pavilion, were the fish were gutted and bagged up for the children to take home for tea.
Flynn said he didn’t like fish, so he wasn’t going to eat it, but it was fun to catch.
‘‘Dad can eat it, but not my sister.
‘‘She’s getting her own fish, but it’s not going to be bigger than my fish.’’
‘‘The children have a lot of fun - for many it's something they've never had a chance to do before... About 20 per cent are going to keep fishing and have a lifelong hobby’’
Fish and Game regional manager Phil Teal
With help, Tristan Duncan, 10, lands one of the 750 rainbow trout at the Fish and Game Take a Kid Fishing Day.