Catch! - Recreational fishing news from Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development, Western Australia
Issue No. 37, May 2018

An eye in the sky for crabbing survey

A fisheries officer releasing a drone from a boat

For the first time in Western Australia, drone technology is being used to monitor how recreational fishers go about getting their catch.

The 12-month survey will provide a comprehensive estimate of the distribution and effort of recreational fishers that go crabbing in the Peel-Harvey Estuary – a condition of the sustainabilty certification provided by the Marine Stewardship Council.

The range of cameras used in the survey, including those attached to drones, will provide 24-7 data on shore-based recreational fishers across more than 130 kilometres of the Peel-Harvey Estuary, and invaluable information on how fishers use these sites during the day and night. More.

Recovery plan for Gascoyne pink snapper

Western Australia’s commercial and recreational fishers and the Gascoyne community have been praised for working together to establish a recovery plan for the region’s oceanic pink snapper.

From 1 June to 31 August 2018, the waters in an area north of Bernier Island, including Koks Island, will be closed to pink snapper fishing to protect this key spawning location. More.

Fishwatch supports fish for the future

You can play a role in keeping our fish stocks sustainable by reporting illegal or suspicious fishing activities to FishWatch on 1800 815 507, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

It is best to report any suspicious fishing activity as soon as possible so that Fisheries Officers can attend and investigate the incident if they are available. Any information you provide could be valuable, however we recommend you do not approach anyone for your own safety. All reports made are treated in the strictest of confidence. More.

Cod ID crucial for following the rules

A board with the different cod species laid side by side

The similarity in appearance of some cod species can lead to fishers incorrectly identifying cods and exceeding bag limits as a result. By correctly identifying species, fishers can stick to the rules and help ensure cod stocks remain healthy.

Our Mid West Fisheries Officers say one of the most common mistakes relates to mixing up the black tipped rockcod with Chinaman cod – which has a different bag limit from other cods. More.

Juvenile abs found on Kalbarri reefs

Fisheries researchers placing relocated abalone onto a reef

A Fisheries research project in 2016 supervised the relocation of more than 86,000 abalone from Esperance and Perth onto Kalbarri reefs after the 2011 marine heatwave decimated 99 per cent of the Roe's abalone.

New juvenile stock have since been detected at the release sites, providing an indication that the abalone are settling, breeding and adapting to Kalbarri’s rougher sea conditions. More.

Shark Bay fishing survey underway

A fisheries officer catching a drone as it lands

An innovative 12-month survey of recreational fishing activity in Shark Bay is underway to help ensure the ongoing sustainability of key fish stocks in the World Heritage listed area.

Researchers will be on the ground interviewing recreational fishers about their catches at boat ramps, while a drone and fixed wing aircraft as well as boat ramp cameras will be used to monitor recreational boating activity. More.