As sustained efforts are made to promote Guyana as a tourist destination, the Guyana Tourism Authority (GTA), in collaboration with Rewa Eco-lodge, conducted a three-day sport fishing training which saw the involvement of 10 residents of Warapoka, Region One.
The training occurred over the period of May 27th – 29th, 2019.
Warapoka is one of the four communities involved in community-led and community-owned tourism development through a partnership between the Ministry of Indigenous Peoples’ Affair (MOIPA) and the GTA. The GTA is committed to providing the relevant training programmes and assistance to prepare villages like Warapoka to independently host travellers, following the lead of established community tourism enterprises like Surama Eco-lodge and Rewa Eco-lodge.
Sustainable sport fishing is one of the key activities the members of the community highlighted as an important add-on to the experience of Warapoka. With a tarpon hatchery and a wide variety of other fish species, the village will become an attractive destination for sport fishing enthusiasts.
The purpose of this particular training was to identify key individuals in an effort to further solidify their knowledge and strengthen their capacity and competency in the best practices of catch and release sport fishing, specifically spin and fly fishing.
The fishing grounds in Warapoka are rich in rare species of fish, making it a prime destination for sport fishing. The much sought-after tarpon, lou lou, and bashar fish species are just a few of the more exotic fish that populate these waters. The community’s conservation efforts of fish stock and marine life will also increase public awareness on biodiversity protection and management of marine life. Through the community’s efforts, sport fishing and, by extension, tourism in Guyana will see an increase in travellers seeking out high-quality fisheries as more tourism product becomes available.
GTA, in collaboration with Rewa Eco-Lodge, facilitated the necessary training needed to enhance the skill sets of the already talented fisherfolk of Warapoka.
Kamrul Baksh, GTA’s Senior Officer of Product Development and Certification, along with Rewa’s top fishermen, Master Trainer Rovin Alvin, and senior tour guides Shun Alvin and Davis Edwards, all conducted the training sessions.
These three individuals from Rewa Eco-Lodge have been associated with sport fishing for more than five years and specialise in fly and spin fishing. Rewa has also agreed to engage the trainees in further training that will be planned and executed within the coming months. The GTA will assist in procuring the knowledge, know-how, and equipment needed by the community to master the art of sport fishing and work with Rewa, Warapoka, and local sport fishing tour operators to develop itineraries for sport fishing packages in the area.