Under-representation of Women in Fishing

Women’s roles and involvement in commercial and sport fishing are gradually becoming a center of attention in discussions. Gender is often ignored when thinking of more traditionally masculine activities like fishing. However, a few Orlando fishing guides hope to challenge this status quo and demonstrate that sport fishing can and should be enjoyed by everyone.

Fishing has come a long way from being a man’s sport, and in recent years women have flocked to the activity, yet they’re rarely represented. It’s hard to gauge if their numbers are rising or decreasing within the sport of fishing.


Why there’s a Need to Focus on Women

In most fishing activities, gender is nothing close to a priority. Women are not viewed as beneficiaries. Traditionally, fishing wears a man’s face, but behind every fish bite is a woman’s effort. Turning from the sports side of fishing to look at the commercial aspect, without women, there would be a drop in catching, processing, and delivering of fish to consumers. Still, most of these efforts are often disregarded just as women are on the sports side of fishing. 

Assuming women’s bargaining power is strengthened to a point where they play significant roles within the fishing industry, they increase their chances for greater recognition within such a male-dominated industry.

According to research, if you give women a chance to own and run a section of aquaculture farming, their autonomy and ability to make wise decisions for their household and community increases. Just as we can glean positives from the increasing involvement of women in the commercial fishing industry, we can project similar success for them on the sports side of fishing.

Encouraging more Investment on Women in Fishing Activities

While women’s role and involvement in fishing and economic contributions are often undervalued and overlooked, they have significant and outstanding effects on economic, ecological, and social sustainability. Therefore, development sectors working on fisheries should put their money where their mouth is and focus more on prioritizing women when it comes to fishing.

Horizon Fishing Charters, located in Florida, has added gender equality to its agenda. They have organized an all-inclusive charter that encourages everyone to have fun when fishing without feeling excluded. This is an excellent step in building confidence in women and empowering them.


When thinking about marine development, you should have gender equality in mind. Failure to put women’s fishing activities into account can lead to poor geographical management, leading to marine closure, thus putting a higher burden on them. Also, under-representing them in decision making and the management plans implementation can interfere with their compliance and acceptance. This results in a vicious cycle of undervaluing the ecological and social benefits of marine management.

Simply put, women’s significant involvement in marine activities and governance can significantly raise the ecological and social outcomes. So regardless of sex, women deserve the right to engage in a historically male-centric activity and feel welcomed into the community. Just as a fish doesn’t discriminate against who casts the line, neither should we. All are welcome at Horizon, the premier Orlando fishing guides.

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