“More and more young people are fishing in the heart of cities”

A fisherman in Paris in November 2020.

You no longer have to wait for retirement to assume a khaki bucket hat and a sleeveless jacket: mobile phone in hand and pockets full of temptations, more and more young people are taking up this activity. On TikTok, #fishing videos have over 80 billion views. Benoît Lefebvre, Director of Recreational Fishing Development at the National Fishing Federation of France, analyzes the profiles and expectations of this new generation of anglers.

What helped spread hunting among young people?

Since hunting is practiced outdoors, it was not affected much by the restrictive measures during the confinement periods. Between the end of 2019 and 2021 we have seen an increase in the number of our members: +3%. The enthusiasm is particularly noticeable among those under 18 years of age: +7% over the same period. They now account for 22.5% from our community. We don’t have numbers for young people, but they are being affected by the renewed interest in this activity. We see more and more of them going fishing in the heart of cities, on the banks of the Seine in Paris for example, to reconnect with nature. This is called Street fishing, a practice that has been democratized by social networks and is more accessible because it requires very little material. All you need is a rod and bait, a plastic simulated fish, that you have to move to trick the fish. fishing feeder Works well too. Intended for catching white fish such as carp, bream or roach, it seduces with its playful and visual side. We catch a lot of fish, and there is work. The new generation modernizes fishing: No solitary and immobile Grandpa, we’re active, walking the docks with friends, with a little bit of ‘tracking’.

Read also: The material is reserved for our subscribers When urban youth renew the dusty image of hunting: ‘we stand up for a certain culture’

How do you support this new generation of hunters?

We are preparing tournaments for young people in collaboration with the French Federation of Sport Fishing, for example departmental level fishing competitions, so that they can meet and compete in the context of festive events. There are already, at European level, competitions dealing with this technology, which lead to broadcasts on social networks, with a new episode every week, like a TV series. We are also developing our network of “Nature Fishing” workshops, a school for discovering fishing techniques. New fishermen can contact the departmental associations to take part in these workshops: To fish, you have to know the environment well, know how the fish live, where they are sheltered, where they eat…

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