THE successful court prosecution of two Bundaberg fishers for crabbing offences is a timely reminder to local anglers to comply with Queensland’s fishing rules and regulations.
Queensland Boating and Fisheries Patrol district officer Geoffrey Fergusson said two recreational Bundaberg fishers were charged with a range of offences following a routine vessel inspection at the Elliot River in April 2017. “Fisheries officers found 10 female and three undersized mud crabs hidden in the vessel’s bow, along with eight unmarked crab pots,” Mr Fergusson said. “The mud crabs were released alive into the water and the crab pots seized.”
Bundaberg Magistrates’ Court fined the two fishers a total of $7180, including a $1000 penalty for one offender who obstructed fisheries officers, and ordered their fishing apparatus be forfeited to the Crown. Mr Fergusson urged fishers to comply with Queensland’s crabbing rules and regulations, which are in place to ensure sustainable crab stocks for future generations to enjoy.
“Female mud crabs are protected throughout Queensland, the minimum size limit for a male mud crab is 15cm, with a possession limit of 10 crabs per person and this includes any you have at home in the freezer,” Mr Fergusson said. “Restrictions also apply to crabbing gear including crab pots and dillies, which must be marked by an identifying tag that shows the surname and address of the owner.
“Fishers can find the full list of crabbing rules and regulations online at www.fisheries.qld.gov.au, by downloading the free Qld Fishing smartphone app or calling 13 24 23.
“If anyone suspects illegal fishing activity, they should report it to the Fishwatch hotline on 1800 017 116 so that it can be investigated.”
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