Recreational and sport fishing are fishing primarily for pleasure or competition. Recreational fishing has conventions, rules, licensing restrictions and laws that limit the way in which fish may be caught; typically, these prohibit the use of nets and the catching of fish with hooks not in the mouth. The most common form of recreational fishing is done with a rod, reel, line, hooks and any one of a wide range of baits or lures such as artificial flies. The practice of catching or attempting to catch fish with a hook is generally known as angling. In angling, it is sometimes expected or required that fish be returned to the water (catch and release). Recreational or sport fishermen may log their catches or participate in fishing competitions. Big-game fishing is fishing from boats to catch large open-water species such as tuna, sharks, and marlin. Sport fishing (sometimes game fishing) is recreational fishing where the primary reward is the challenge of finding and catching the fish rather than the culinary or financial value of the fish's flesh. Fish sought after include marlin, tuna, tarpon, sailfish, shark, mackerel, and many others. History Big-game fishing started as a sport after the invention of the motor boat. Charles Frederick Holder, a marine biologist and early conservationist, is credited with founding the sport in 1898. He went on to publish many articles and books on the subject, noted for their combination of accurate scientific detail with exciting narratives. Purpose built game fishing boats appeared early in the 20th century. An example is the Crete, in use at Catalina Island, California, in 1915, and shipped to Hawaii the following year. According to a newspaper report at that time, the Crete had "... a deep cockpit, a chair fitted for landing big fish and leather pockets for placing the pole." Big-game species The billfish (broadbill swordfish, marlin and sailfish), larger tunas (bluefin, yellowfin, and bigeye) and sharks (mako, great white, tiger, hammerhead and other large species) are the main species recognized as big-game fish, with many anglers considering the Atlantic tarpon also a big-game species. Smaller game fish, such as dolphinf
sh, wahoo, smaller tuna species such as albacore and skipjack tuna, plus barracuda, are commonly caught as by-catch or taken deliberately for use as live or dead bait. Locations Historically most of the locations where the sport was developed, such as Avalon, California; Florida; Bimini in the Bahamas; Cairns, Queensland, Australia; northern New Zealand; Panama; Wedgeport in Nova Scotia and Kona in Hawaii, benefited from the presence of large numbers of gamefish relatively close to shore, within range of the boats of that era. As the vessels used for sportfishing became larger, faster, longer-ranged and more seaworthy, big-game species are now pursued on grounds ranging from 60 or 70 miles' distance from port, such as the submarine canyons of the United States continental shelf, to hundreds of miles as in the case of the San Diego long range fishery, where large live-aboard vessels range far out into the Pacific searching for tuna schools. Today big-game fishing is carried out from ports in tropical and temperate coasts practically worldwide. North America The United States has the world's largest saltwater fishing industry and along the entire length of the East Coast, from Key West to the Gulf of Maine, big-game anglers pursue a variety of tropical and temperate sportfish ranging from sailfish and dolphinfish in the Florida Keys to giant bluefin tuna in Massachusetts and in Canadian waters. The West Coast lacks the influence of the warm Gulf Stream current, and most big game species are mainly confined to California, a birthplace of the sport. Some of the same species that were fished for by the pioneers of the sport - Pacific bluefin tuna, broadbill swordfish and striped marlin - are still fished for today. Latin and South America Billfish and tuna are pursued in almost all the Latin American coastal nations, many of which are renowned for the excellence of their fishing. Mexico, Panama, Costa Rica, Venezuela, Ecuador and Guatemala have the largest fleets of sport fishing boats. Costa Rica's pacific coast, especially the coast of the Guanacaste Province, is famous for its fishing because of the ocean currents and the government catch and release laws.