Bay and offshore fishing in the Galveston Bay area: a comparative study of fishing patterns, fishermen characteristics, and expenditures.
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Saltwater boat fishing patterns as well as fishermen characteristics and expenditures near Houston and Galveston, Texas, were investigated through a 1979 mail survey of registered boat owners who fished the Galveston Bay area. Bay and offshore fishermen were similar in most respects (income was an exception) but their economic impact varied greatly. Offshore fishing parties spent nearly twice as much money per day, on the average, as bay parties, but they contributed only about one-fifth as much to the regional economy because they were fewer in number and made fewer fishing trips. Offshore fishing parties were more likely than bay parties to buy snack foods and beverages, restaurant meals, tackle and equipment, and gas and oil for their boat in the coastal community. The findings presented here point to important differences in participation, spending, and economic impact that need to be examined further elsewhere. The approach and findings should be of use to fishery managers and local officials when they allocate resources based on economic impact perspectives.