Bahamas Regulations Update Part 3,092

This stuff just doesn’t die, does it?

All is well... not to worry.

All is well… not to worry.

There is a new draft of Bahamian regulations making the rounds.

The link is here.

I’ve read it, thought about it and asked around about it a bit. Here’s my take.

It doesn’t look to bad to me. I think there is a little clarification around boats, guides and exactly when you need one, but for the most part, it looks pretty good.

There is no DIY ban. You’ll need a license, but that’s not going to be an issue. No bans on foreign lodges (that was a dumb idea to begin with as other legislation covers foreign investment). Guides will need to be certified, but that is probably also a good thing.

WHY this all looks good is based on who is in control of all the misc. parts. The Ministry of Tourism is put in the driver’s seat. That’s good. The Ministry of Tourism cares about the whole tourism sector, not just one tiny segment of it. They have the wider perspective needed. They are pro-angler and pro-restaurant owner and pro-grocery store owner and pro-Bahamian.

Of course, the “anti” crew isn’t happy about the new draft, which should pretty much tell you this is headed in the right direction.

If I were a betting man, I’d put good money on this whole thing either not happening at all, or very much breaking our way.

Tags: ,


  1. Russell Richards

    Sorry, but this version looks the same to me as last weeks and as a UK resident owning a property and boat here certainly does not look ‘pretty good’.

    It does not clarify the definition of foreign fishing, the position of domestic owned or rented boats and or property owners vs citizens just to name a few glaring omissions.

    The same ridiculous situation exists where I cannot take the boat down the beach unless I am accompanied by a guide but I can walk to and fish the same local flat alone- but not if I show a friend how to fish for bonefish- even for an hour or two on the way to or from the local beach bar.

    Conservation – but then a bag limit of 3 – what’s that all about!!

    As for the proposed permit fees- they are a joke and it will cost more to administer than they will collect- not much good for conservation coming from here!!

    This draft demonstrates the same degree of muddled thinking and a clear lack of understanding of just how bonefishing actually takes place- all under the guise of Conservation when the real thrust is an attempt to boost guides income. As it stands it will do nothing for the guides or the Bahamas as a whole as fishermen will avoid here especially those who might be tempted to buy a property and spend a few months a year fishing from time to time. That is not good for the local economy.

    Meanwhile I am enjoying fishing virtually alone- there is no one to be seen on the beaches or the flats and/or travelling around them- just the very very occasional lodge boat. All the fuss last year has created huge damage to the local economy and it is clear to be seen by those who actually fish rather than legislate about it.

    I hope sense will prevail. Goodness knows how we get there though.

    Russell Richards

  2. Like I’ve been saying from the beginning, what’s with a “flats” license? Why not just a general fishing license like any other countries that require a shore fishing license. It would generate far more revenue by requiring all persons to obtain when any type of shore fishing is conducted. Rental boats and cruisers are already covered. It addresses the flats definition ambiguity, when fishing from shore whether standing in water, on iron shore or dock, if a bonefish, tarpon or permit is caught it must be released and fish as usual to your hearts content… the same or more revenue would be available for conservation and the Bahamian government could certainly use some fisheries enforcement vessels, more than the four they now operate.

  3. I think there are some things to iron out, but from what I’ve heard there is no interest in limiting second home owners from fishing on their own or to keep you from giving advice to a fishing buddy. At least there isn’t that interest from the Ministry of Tourism. That this looks to be in their hands is a good thing. Most of the issues with the legislation comes from intent. There is not intent from Tourism to piss off tourists. What we see isn’t a finished product. I’m hopeful.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *