Ten people have learnt it does not pay to break fisheries laws, with more than $4,000 in fines issued by Primary Industries and Regions SA (PIRSA) in the Limestone Coast during December 2018.
PIRSA Fisheries Officers were out in force during the busy Christmas holiday period to ensure recreational fishers were abiding by the rules.
The fines were issued to ten people for the following illegal fishing activities:
- A 53-year-old man for taking over the bag limit of Rock Lobster while diving near Nene Valley.
- A 20-year-old man, a 42-year-old man, a 51-year-old woman and a 57-year-old woman for taking undersize Abalone from the intertidal zone near Port MacDonnell.
- A 62-year-old man for using an unregistered Rock Lobster pot in a prohibited area for rock lobster pots near Port MacDonnell.
- A 42-year-old man and a 30-year-old man for taking undersize fish near Port MacDonnell.
- A 74-year-old man and a 56-year-old man for using drop nets illegally in an area closed for using drop nets, near the Port MacDonnell Breakwater.
In addition to the fines, a 52-year-old Mount Gambier man was detected storing Rock Lobster in a corf. It is alleged the man, a recreational fisher, stored Rock Lobster illegally and took over the daily bag limit of Rock Lobster, some of which were undersize. The man will likely face court at a later date.
Minister for Primary Industries and Regional Development Tim Whetstone said the fines were a reminder if fishers don't do the right thing, they will be caught.
"It's great to see many South Australia's enjoying recreational fishing over the summer period, however, you must follow the rules," said Minister Whetstone.
"The rules are in place to ensure our popular fish species continue to thrive. Most recreational fishers do the right thing because they are passionate about making sure our fish stocks remain healthy."
Following these fines, fishers are reminded that any person over the age of 15 can use two Rock Lobster pots registered in that person's name. The registered pot must be attached to a line by a red buoy, not less than four litres in size, with the registered tag issued by PIRSA affixed.
The public are encouraged to contact the Fishwatch hotline on 1800 065 522, which is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, when they see any suspicious or illegal fishing activity. Fishers can also access information about bag and size limits, protected species and closures by downloading the free SA Recreational Fishing Guide app.