Reely Exciting Future For Young Victorian Anglers

The Andrews Labor Government is supporting the next generation of recreational fishers through ongoing investment in the sector, including a series of free VicFishKids events and removing commercial net fishing from Port Phillip Bay.

The events are giving young Victorians the chance to reel in a new hobby in a safe and supported environment with help from a range of fishing experts, with the next event at Kennington Reservoir in Bendigo on Sunday, 1 May.

Funded as part of the Government’s $35 million Go Fishing Plan, an election commitment to get more people fishing more often, events will also be held in Moorabbin, and Seymour in the coming months.

Run alongside local fishing clubs and Fishcare, the event series ensures these young newcomers learn from experienced fishers about everything from knots, casting, bait selection and what to do when they land their first fish.

The Labor Government is also delivering on its election commitment to remove commercial fishing nets from Port Phillip Bay from 1 April 2022, with an eight licence, 88 tonne snapper longline fishery remaining.

Following significant consultation by the Victorian Fisheries Authority (VFA) with the commercial and recreational fishing sectors, the fishery will replace trawlers in Port Phillip Bay and Western Port from the start of next month.

This sustainable fishery will complement the Corner Inlet fishery in Gippsland in continuing to provide high value, premium seafood to Victoria’s restaurants and cafes.

The $27 million investment to transition the bay from commercial netting into a recreational fishing haven will result in over 600 tonnes of additional fish available for Victorians to reel in.

Maintaining a dedicated focus on getting more Victorians fishing more often, the Labor Government has invested over $71 million since 2014 to remove nets from the Gippsland Lakes and Port Phillip Bay, deliver record fish stocking across Victoria, build a new native fish hatchery at Arcadia, make all boat ramps free and commence Victoria’s largest ever boat ramp revitalisation program in the state’s history.

Recreational fishing is worth over $3.9 billion to the Victorian economy, supporting 33,000 jobs, with more than 840,000 Victorians on the water each year.

Those who attend one of the VicFishKids event’s 32 clinics receive a free fishing rod of their own to take home. For more information, visit

“VicFishKids events are a wonderful way for budding young anglers to try their hand at fishing for the first time – helping us to get more people fishing more often.” 

“Removing commercial fishing nets in the bay signals a bright future for fishing for Victorians, including the young anglers in attendance at our VicFishKids clinics.”

The Hon Melissa Horne

Minister for Fishing and Boating