FISH FOR YOUR WELLBEING
THE Government is encouraging us all to go fishing to improve our mental health and wellbeing.
Over 100,000 more people are fishing in England since the COVID-19 lockdown was eased in May. Fishing retailers have also reported an increase in demand for beginners’ fishing kits and tackle.
In a recent survey, anglers in England and Wales said that fishing helps their mental health and wellbeing. So now the Government wants more of us to take it up.
It says that learning a new skill can boost self-esteem, and that fishing is quite safe as it can be done easily with social distancing. It also “enhances connections with nature” and encourages friendships that can combat loneliness or anxiety that may have built up during the lockdown.
But not everybody is crazy about the idea. Dr Krzysztof Wojtas of the charity Compassion in World Farming told First News that catching and releasing fish increases their suffering. He said: “Unfortunately, being caught causes pain, stress and fear in fish, and results in physical injuries that can become infected. We would encourage the public to consider less invasive ways of interacting with wildlife.”