Young angler Daniel Cure, 6, gets a hand from Keith Reynolds to bait his hook and learn the rules of fishing at the Quay Street public wharf in Rockhampton. Daniel caught his first fish, a sooty grunter, which wasn’t big enough to keep but was enough to keep Daniel interested in fishing a bit longer.
Young angler Daniel Cure, 6, gets a hand from Keith Reynolds to bait his hook and learn the rules of fishing at the Quay Street public wharf in Rockhampton. Daniel caught his first fish, a sooty grunter, which wasn’t big enough to keep but was enough to keep Daniel interested in fishing a bit longer. Megan Lewis

Anglers hit with fines of $9700

TWENTY-three recreational anglers were hit with fines by Yeppoon Queensland Boating and Fisheries Patrol officers in 2009, totalling $9700.

The biggest fines were handed to three people with a total of $1000 each for the purchase, selling, possession or use of a net that is a commercial fishing apparatus.

Twelve fines ranging from $200 to $400 were issued for taking or possessing regulated fish and one fine of $400 was issued for fishing in closed waters.

Twelve cautions were also issued in 2009.

A spokeswoman from the Department of Employment, Economic Development and Innovation provided a breakdown of these fines to The Morning Bulletin after Queensland Boating and Fisheries Patrol district manager Stephen Dunn announced More than 750 recreational fishing fines were handed out in Queensland.

The Yeppoon Queensland Boating and Fisheries Patrol officers cover areas from Port Alma, north to St Lawrence, west to Emerald and east to the Keppel Islands.

The officers are also responsible for prosecutions that are dealt with at a court level and also undertake education with fishers so they know the current rules and regulations.

Queensland Boating and Fisheries Patrol district manager Stephen Dunn urged anglers to check their catch, with undersize fish one of the most common fishing laws broken in Queensland.

“Before anglers cast a line or lower a crab pot they need to check the rules to make sure they are not fishing illegally,” Mr Dunn said.

“Anglers need to remember that the rules are there for a reason – to make sure we have fish for future generations to enjoy ... recreational fishing.” Suspected illegal fishing activity can be reported to the free 24-hour Fishwatch hotline on 1800 017 116 and the latest fishing rules for Queensland are available at www.deedi.qld.gov.au.

FISHING LAWS

The take of regulated fish in Queensland includes:

Excess catch: Possession limits, or bag limits, are in place for a number of species.

Catch size: A large number of species have minimum size limits to ensure the fish can grow to maturity before being taken.

Female mud and blue swimmer crab take: Female mud and blue swimmer crabs are protected.

Pectoral fin removal for coral reef fin fish: Coral reef fin fish must have the pectoral fin removed to reduce sale on the black market.

Take of protected species: A number of species like groper and barramundi cod are protected.



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