News

South East fishers caught out over Rock Lobster

Wednesday 27 February 2019

Fisheries Officers have seized a total of 18kg of Rock Lobster and 13 pots from recreational fishers during a recent two-day operation at Southend in the state's South East.


Recreational fishers have been caught committing offences that included operating pots not registered in their own name, taking more than the Rock Lobster boat limit, and returning a pot into the water that contained Rock Lobster.

Expiation notices were issued to three fishers, while investigations are still ongoing in relation to other fishers.

This comes off the back of a busy summer holiday period.

Minister for Primary Industries and Regional Development Tim Whetstone said it's important for recreational fishers to know the rules before they head out on the water.

"Rock Lobster is a priority species in South Australia and as such, any breaches of the rules involving this species is taken very seriously by the State Government," said Minister Whetstone.

"As a state that allows Rock Lobster pots to be used by recreational fishers, it's important for the sustainability of the species that people do the right thing.

"While most fishers in the region abide by the rules, it is disappointing to find these fishers breaching the rules.

"There are many recreational Rock Lobster fishers in South Australia and while it's great they are able to use Rock Lobster pots, unfortunately we continue to see fishers operating pots that are not registered in their name."

Fishers are reminded that any person over the age of 15 can use two Rock Lobster pots registered in their 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. It is an offence for someone to set, pull or re-bait a Rock Lobster pot that is not registered in their name.

All Rock Lobsters that are not the legal size or are carrying eggs must be returned to the water immediately by being removed from the pot before re-setting, as it is an offence to return a Rock Lobster into the water in a pot.

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.

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