Since 2010, the Hispanic population in the United States has grown by 23%; during that same time, the number of Hispanic anglers has grown a whopping 42% according to the 2022 Special Report on Fishing. RBFF’s efforts to grow fishing among the Hispanic community with its Vamos A Pescar campaign, launched in 2014, have helped achieve these increases. Yet Hispanics are still underrepresented in fishing, with less than 1 in 10 anglers identifying as Hispanic.
As the country celebrates National Hispanic Heritage Month, we take a deeper dive into the Special Report to learn more about the 4.7 million Hispanics who went fishing last year and participation trends over the last decade.
With almost half of Hispanic anglers living on the Pacific coast or in the South Atlantic region, the high number of Hispanic participants in saltwater fishing should come as no surprise. Around 1.7 million Hispanics or 36% of all Hispanic anglers went saltwater fishing in 2021, compared to just 26% of anglers overall. In fact, Hispanics composed 17% of anglers whose first fishing experience was in saltwater.
Hispanic participation in saltwater fishing has the potential for even more growth, though. Amongst Hispanics who considered fishing in 2021, almost 4 in 10 lived on the Pacific coast or South Atlantic region.
The Leaky Bucket: Hispanic Participation
Just over 1 in 10 lost participants identified as Hispanic. While that proportion is larger than the overall share of total participants who identify as Hispanic, it represents a significant decline from the 14% of lost participants who were Hispanic in 2017. Additionally, the share of reactivated anglers who identify as Hispanic has more than doubled since 2014.
Since 2007, the participation rate of Hispanic women has more than doubled. By 2021, the gap in participation rates between Hispanic men and women was thus slightly smaller than the overall difference in participation rate by gender (8.4% vs. 9.3%).
The participating Hispanic population is younger than the overall participation population, with over 30% of Hispanic anglers (or 1.41 million) under the age of 18. Additionally, only 13% of Hispanic anglers were over the age of 55 in 2021, while nearly a quarter of total anglers were.
Around a quarter of the Hispanic population who considered fishing in 2021 were below the age of 18, indicating an opportunity to introduce even more Hispanic youth to fishing.
Engage Hispanic Communities in Your Area
As the Hispanic population continues to grow in the United States, so too does the importance for continuing to reach out and connect with Hispanic anglers and potential participants. To explore tools your organization can use to recruit, retain and reactivate Hispanic anglers, visit the RBFF Resource Center.