Catch! - Recreational fishing news from Fisheries, Western Australia
Issue No. 32, September 2017

South West angling open all year

Recreational fisher fly fishing

Western Australia’s recreational freshwater anglers can now enjoy their sport all year round.

The removal of the annual two-month closure on select dams will open up further opportunities for anglers who take out a freshwater fishing licence.

The extension of the season and expected increase in fishing will also support the environment by reducing the numbers of feral redfin perch – a species that is known to predate on juvenile marron, trout and native freshwater fish. More.

Science unlocks threadfin secrets

Blue threadfin salmon

Broome recreational fishers and Yawuru traditional owners will begin sampling threadfin salmon in Roebuck Bay in an exciting citizen science project aimed at better understanding local threadfin populations.

The project, which is funded through recreational fishing licence fees, will involve catching, recording, tagging and releasing 1,000 threadfin salmon over the coming months.

It will provide researchers with a range of important scientific information about threadfin population dynamics and movement for the development of culturally and ecologically sustainable management arrangements for this iconic fish. More.

Green is the new black for bream

Fisher holding a black bream

This time of year is a popular time to go black bream fishing in the Swan-Canning Estuary area, and fishers are asked to take care of the surrounding environment and keep to bag and size limits.

In many estuaries the impacts of environmental factors, including the loss of bankside vegetation, can be as important for black bream stocks as fishing pressure. So look after banks and vegetation to help keep our black bream stocks healthy and sustainable. More.

Safer passage for migrating whales

A pod of humpback whales

Fisheries scientists and the western rock lobster industry have completed a world-first project to give migrating humpback whales a safer passage through lobster fishing grounds.

Commercial rock lobster fishers have adopted simple fishing gear modifications – such as weighted ropes, fewer floats and less rope – to reduce the likelihood of whales being entangled.

These measures have resulted in a dramatic reduction in reported entanglements with rock lobster gear − from 17 in 2013 to four in 2016 − and our scientists continue to look for effective ways to further reduce the incidence of whales becoming entangled. More.

Black market operation shut down

Fisher holding a rock lobster

A fisher has been fined over $94,000, forfeited fishing equipment and banned from being on any vessel fishing for rock lobster for two years, after being convicted of illegally trading in recreationally-caught rock lobster.

An investigation revealed the recreational fisher had illegally sold nearly 350 rock lobster between November 2015 and March 2016, over the course of 20 separate transactions.

Individuals who sell their catch illegally risk receiving large fines and having boats, vehicles and gear seized. More.

ID is the key to safe release

Potato cod underwater

It’s important to be able to quickly identify protected species so they can be released without harm.

Some species are protected because their populations have become threatened, while others are protected because they have slow rates of reproduction or can only be found in specific areas. More.

Get smart about sharks

Smart phone showing Sharksmart website

Fishers and other water users can keep informed of the latest reported sightings and tagged shark detections on the Sharksmart activity map and Surf Life Saving WA Twitter feed.

Help keep everyone safe by reporting shark sightings to Water Police on 9442 8600.

Image credit: Potato cod photo by Shannon Conway.