It's an impossible issue. Anglers, like all voters, will basically never agree to the limitations that would actually protect the thing they love. Love to eat fish? Buy it from the store, FFS, stop raping the resource.
Worried about where your license dollars go? Don't, our input is a drop in the bucket. We fund a very tiny percentage of what the fisheries actually cost. Think about it a bit.
So, to achieve fishermen (and women!) nirvana, here's what we do.
First, we eliminate all stocking, except to bring native species back to where they were, if it is feasible. (If you live for put and take fishing, and feel ripped off when you fail to limit out, I'm sorry, this is the wrong hobby for you. The concrete-lined trout farm is over there, bring orange mini-marshmallows, sport, or better yet, take up golf. There is more to this than simply entertaining you.) All the money saved on hatcheries and designing frankenfish will go directly into enforcement.
Then we eliminate the idea that somebody can own water. This is OUR WATER. You don't get to own a lake. You don't get to own a river shore. It all belongs to Canadians. We have the right to fish ALL OF OUR WATER. I don't have to drive by acres of private fish-filled gravel pits to get to my bass river, and deal with screaming rich scum that own the banks of my favorite trout stream. The pressure is spread out, the wealthy are brought down a peg, and the gov't can save money as they don't have to run those silly get-fit advertisements begging us to stop getting so fat.
Then, eliminate seasons, in favor of imposing 365 catch and release, barbless, no bait rules on many waterbodies, especially all trout streams.
In fact, go barbless province wide and ELIMINATE THE USE OF ROE right now. Good anglers do not need roe, it leads to mindless slaughter of salmon by steelheaders.
Massively reduce all limits, putting a limit of zero whenever it's needed, especially on the fragile or top quality sportfish like brookies, sturgeon, steelhead, atlantics.
Native gillnetting and immunity to the law? Oh, I don't think so, THOSE DAYS ARE EFFING OVER! Either you are a CITIZEN OF CANADA or you are not. Comply with our laws, or move along, please, you're not welcome. Treaty rights from last century... oh, boo hoo... If we can happily subsidize horse tracks for $300 million a year, we can throw the natives enough money to close every reserve and turn them into citizens. Tough decision... a fist full of cash or "native heritage" and "living the way of the elders"... take the money or begone. Boom, right there we've eliminated a major burr under the saddle of the majority of anglers. Nobody likes a TINY MINORITY getting special rights, it is utter horseshit and must be stopped.
And then, realizing that laws without enforcement are idiotic and pointless, I'd suggest raising taxes and at least doubling the cost of a license so that THE RESOURCE IS ACTUALLY PROTECTED. If we can afford to have thousands of cops sitting around looking for somebody doing 15 km over the speed limit, we can afford to take our natural heritage seriously. I WANT to see conservation officers every now and then instead of once per decade. Have enough money so that biology, instead of opinion, makes the law.
Educate, enforce, and punish. Maybe if you cannot differentiate between a chinook salmon and a brown trout, or pike vs musky... YOU DON'T GET A LICENSE. Maybe if you cannot recite the basic laws... you don't get to fish. Can't be bothered to crimp a barb? Such a lazy angler that you have to use roe? That'll be a hundred bucks and we'll take your gear, too, thank you very much. Double the possession limit... oh my, nice car, we'll take it, and here's a five grand fine. And enforce all the American anglers coming across the borders too, none of them cross back without an inspection. Private lakes up north especially. This will pay for itself in a short time.
And having said that, cut the rule book down by about 9/10'ths and make it simple enough that a child can memorize it. It is currently INSANE... closed season here for this fish, until we change it, and special extension there and slot limits over here (btw 16 and 21" is legal on Friday but Wednesday you can have 3 over 22" unless it's a leap year, WTF???) and you can't fish across this line, and we protect this species while it's spawning but not this one... it's absurd, you don't need laws for every separate river, you need common sense blanket rules... like 365 day seasons for catch and release anglers. Eliminate this horseshit outdoors card, too, I just want to have one fishing license, pretty please, and I'd like to buy it once a decade and it should be available everywhere they sell tackle, no fuss no muss for retailers. And print the rule book in whatever language it's needed in. Communicate with new immigrant anglers that haven't mastered the language; have them explain the rules to eachother, have them police eachother too, and boom, another problem eliminated.
And then tie your fishing license into voter registration. You didn't bother to vote this election? So solly, you don't get to enjoy the rights of a citizen. Boom, another problem eliminated, the deadbeat anglers that trash the waterways and make us all look like scum. Anybody lazy enough to simply drop their garbage on the ground is surely too lazy to ever bother to vote.
And ENFORCE POLLUTION LAWS WITH AN IRON FIST. Corporations will be responsible for every meter of ground they pollute, bankruptcy or no bankruptcy. CEO's do time. The biggest offenders laugh at hundred million dollar fines, so hammer them into the ground, take ten years of their profits, or simply SHUT THEM DOWN.
And if you think the above is crazy... I'm just getting started.
We need to somehow start explaining environmentalism to people. How an angler could ever vote conservative, I'll never know. 99% of high school is entirely worthless, let's stick a full year of environmental studies in there. Maybe that would teach us that everything we do and buy has a consequence. Have the girls trace estrogen through the waterways and treatment plants, and have the boys find out how long a beer can will persist in the wild.
Not being concerned about the environment means you like the idea of poisoning your children... what do you think is meant by clean water laws???!
But of course, all of the above is but a mad fever-dream.
After all, how many guys do you personally know that have a freezer full of fish right now, and are going out for more this weekend?
We can't even enforce basic common sense, or simple morality, let alone possession laws, and government will always be more or less idiotic.
Such is life.