Blue swimmer crabs and whiting most popular species for recreational fishers
2013-14 survey results show ongoing stewardship of fish resources
Funding from boat fishing licences helps enhance recreational fishing
More than 3.4 million fish and invertebrates from 230 different species have been caught by recreational fishers in Western Australia over the past year - but crabs are still the most popular.
Releasing the latest WA Recreational Boat Fishing Survey, Fisheries Minister Ken Baston said more than 901,000 blue swimmer crabs had been caught during 2013-14.
About 68 per cent of the crabs were released - an increase of about 20 per cent on the previous survey.
Mr Baston said for overall fish caught, more than half were released, showing that recreational fishers were respecting conservation measures.
School whiting proved to be the most popular finfish. About 352,000 school whiting were caught, as well as 173,000 Australian herring and about 148,000 pink snapper.
Boat fishing was most popular between Kalbarri and Augusta, where catches of pink snapper and dhufish have remained steady.
The Minister said the investment in this innovative survey recognised the importance the State Government had placed on the effective management of recreational fishing in Western Australia and it was another example of licence fees at work.
As part of the stock recovery plan, the taking or landing of demersal finfish is prohibited between Kalbarri and Augusta from October 15 to December 15 (inclusive) each year and any such fish caught from a boat or from shore during the closed season must be returned to the water as soon as possible.
The biennial survey is funded from the Recreational Fishing Boat Licence
It involved 7,500 people fishing from boats
The Department of Fisheries has started the 2015-16 survey
Minister's office - 6552 5400
WA Recreational Boat Fishing Survey flyer.pdf