Date of this Version
Fisheries Management and Ecology, 2013, 20, 211–222
There is a growing body of literature that shows internet search volume on a topic, such as fishing, is a viable measure of salience. Herein, internet search volume for ‘fishing’ and ‘angling’ is used as a measure of public interest in fishing, in particular, recreational fishing. An online tool, Google Insights for Search, which allows one to study internet search terms and their volume since 2004, is used to examine trends in interest in fishing for 50 countries. Trends in normalised fishing search volume, during 2004 through 2011, varied from a 72.6% decrease (Russian Federation) to a 133.7% increase (Hungary). Normalised fishing search volume declined in 40 (80%) of the countries studied. The decline has been relatively large in English-speaking countries, but also has been large in Central and South American, and European countries. Analyses of search queries provide a low-cost means of gaining insight into angler interests and, possibly, behaviour in countries around the world.