West Coast Abalone Season Reduced To Five Sessions

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1st November 2010, 05:41pm - Views: 1155


Media Release
1 November 2010 41/2010

West Coast abalone season reduced to FIVE sessions

This year's recreational abalone fishing season in the West Coat Zone, which includes the Perth
metro area, will be reduced to five one-hour Sunday sessions.

The 2010 season opens on 7 November and runs for five Sundays, until 5 December.

Recreational fishing for abalone, in the zone from Busselton Jetty to the Greenough River
mouth, is only permitted between the hours of 7am and 8am on the prescribed Sundays.

Department of Fisheries Senior Management Officer Martin Holtz said the total fishing time of
only five hours made it one of the world's most tightly managed recreational fisheries.

"The reduction in fishing time, by one session, is necessary to manage the recreational catch to
40 tonnes," Mr Holtz said. "In the last two years, the recreational sector has caught 48.6 tonnes
and 44 tonnes (respectively) from the West Coast Zone.

"It is important each sector is managed to its allocated catch to ensure the sustainability of the
fishery. The commercial sector is managed separately, to a yearly quota of 36 tonnes.

"The new arrangements will help to ensure the many thousands of fishers, who enjoy the annual
opportunity to collect this seafood delicacy, can continue to do so in the future."

On each Sunday during the season, licensed recreational abalone fishers can each take a
maximum of 20 Roe's legal-sized abalone, which measure 60 millimetres or larger.

Mr Holtz said this year the department would have the benefit of more mobile patrols of
Fisheries and Marine Officers, to answer questions fishers may have about the abalone fishing
rules and to ensure compliance in this important and unique recreational fishery.

"Significant fines apply to people in possession of undersize abalone or over the bag limit," he
said. "It is also important that fishers remember they can not collect abalone for other people on
the beach, nor remove abalone from the reefs if it is smaller than the legal size.

"If you want a feed of abalone you need to get a licence and get wet, but please keep safe and
check the weather and swell conditions to make sure you can fish safely."

A comprehensive brochure is available for fishers wanting more details about the West Coast
Zone abalone season. The Recreational Fishing Guide Abalone 2010/11 is available online at
www.fish.wa.gov.au or from Department of Fisheries offices and information outlets.

MEDIA CONTACT:

Ashley Malone Ph: 9203 0357
Principal Media Liaison Officer Mobile: 0418 901 767



Report all suspected illegal fishing activity to FISHWATCH 1800 815 507



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