Recreational fishers are lobbying the state's political parties to revoke grazing licences to farmers who obstruct the public's access to Victorian waterways.
The state's peak recreational fishing lobby has received more than 300 complaints of farmers and landowners blocking public access to some Crown land under grazing licences, which VR Fish executive officer Ben Scullin said was "collateral damage" of the state government's move to allow camping on some Crown land.
This week the government named a further five sites where people can access campsites along the Ovens River, near Everton and Wangaratta, which join a further 13 sites along the Goulburn River at Yea, Molesworth, Seymour, Tallarook, and Murchison opened earlier this month.
"We certainly lost more access than we had," Mr Scullin said.
"We have some collateral damage here and we are seeing much more access being restricted illegally than benefits gained from [these] campsites.
"We want some of those access losses reopened and that going to be a big job because we reckon there's about 300 of them and growing."
Mr Scullin said VR Fish would lobby parties ahead of Victoria's state election in November to revoke grazing licences to any holder who illegally blocks the public from accessing Crown land.
"Ultimately it will be an enforcement issue. You revoke grazing licences - that's the only way," he said.
"Some landowners believe this is their land.
"If those areas are important for recreational fishers and they have an access right, then it needs to be fixed."
VR Fish even suggest the state's 138 recreational fishing clubs could then manage the Crown land previously under grazing licences in an "adopt a highway" style program.
"We are going to put our money where our mouth is... we recognise rehabilitating environments along riverbanks and in-stream is the most important," he said.
"Planting shelter belts and having cups of tea on each other's farms is not going to do it - so someone's got to do it."
Ahead of the 2018 state election, Premier Daniel Andrews committed the entirety of boaters' marine licence and boat registration fees - nearly $30 million - to a Better Boating Fund to upgrade ramps and remove user fees.
It was an attempt to win the votes of thousands of boat owners and anglers in southeast Melbourne's sandbelt seats, Mr Scullin said, where the seat was held by 180 votes in an area that had 3000 registered boat owners.
"I don't think recreational fishers have that much power but I think the state government and the opposition recognized the benefits of rec fishing... with multiple benefits to the communities and to the people that practice it," he said.
At the same election, the government promised to open new camping and fishing areas for public access, which received more than 1100 submissions during the consultation period.
Kiewa Valley farmer Belinda Pearce organised a rally in Melbourne last year protesting the camping rules, and said government departments were unable to manage the land as well as farmers.
"Just because it's public land doesn't mean that it's suitable for camping," Ms Pearce said.
"The Botanical Gardens is public land, parks and gardens are public land, would we camp there? No, because it's not fit for purpose.
"We're providing a public service by looking after that land... You look after the land, you can graze it."
Ms Pearce said revoking these licences would cause issues of widespread weed and pest issues across the state.
"To revoke those licenses, you don't have anybody looking after that land and if the public land managed by Parks Victoria and DEWLP (Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning) is anything to go by, they can't keep up with the pests and weeds," she said.
"You know where are the rabbits coming from? the public land. Where's the deer coming from? The public land. They are incredibly under resourced to manage what they've already got."