Hon Ken Baston MLC

Hon Ken Baston MLC

Former Minister for Agriculture and Food; Fisheries

    New rules help recreational rock lobster fishers

    16/09/2015 7:00 AM
    • New rock lobster regulations to improve the WA recreational fishing experience are expected to be gazetted for the season, which starts on October 15

    The State Government has further expanded opportunities for licensed recreational fishers to catch rock lobsters in Western Australia, Fisheries Minister Ken Baston announced today.


    Subject to gazettal, three new rules will apply from the start of the recreational rock lobster fishing season in mid-October.


    "Two people will be able to share a rock lobster pot and take large female western rock lobsters, provided they are not in reproductive condition," Mr Baston said.


    "This will provide greater convenience for fishers and increased capacity for west coast recreational fishers to take their allocated catch share, offering a better fishing experience.


    "I have also accepted the community's request for the bag and boat limits for tropical rock lobsters to be halved to share the available catch of these species among more fishers.


    "The new rules are the latest in a series of management changes, which primarily aim to help the sector achieve its five per cent western rock lobster catch allocation on WA's west coast."


    The Minister said a maximum of two people would be able to share a rock lobster pot, with each person required to attach a separate float with their gear identification number on it.


    "Each licensed fisher will still only be allowed to use up to two pots to fish for rock lobster, even if they are sharing their pots with someone else and these fishers will not be able to bring back the other person's bag limit," he said.


    Mr Baston said the maximum legal lengths for female western rock lobsters would no longer apply for recreational fishers.


    "This will bring the recreational fishery into line with the commercial operators and make additional lobsters available to recreational fishers without impacting on sustainability," he said.  


    "Setose, tarspot and berried female western rock lobsters will continue to be protected.  In the areas where tropical rock lobsters can also be caught, a maximum daily bag limit of four will apply to these species.  Fishers will still be able to take a total of eight lobsters overall, but no more than four can be the tropical species."


    Fact File

    Minister's office - 6552 5400