Jon Ford

Jon Ford

Minister for Employment Protection; Regional Development; Fisheries; the Kimberley, Pilbara and Gascoyne

    Fisheries Minister expands Capes rock lobster closures

    24/10/2005 12:00 AM

    Fisheries Minister Jon Ford will expand buffer zones designed to stop board riders being entangled in rock lobster fishing gear at two of the State’s most popular surfing breaks.

    On a visit to the Capes region today, Fisheries Minister Jon Ford announced expanded bans on rock lobster pot fishing at the popular Three Bears and Left Handers surfing spots.

    “After looking closely at these two surf breaks and the level of use they receive, it was clear that the existing closures did not go far enough,” he said.

    The buffer zone at Left Handers will double in size, while at Three Bears it will be increased by a third to about 400 metres off the beach.

    “This will go a long way towards meeting the concerns of surfers and the local community,” the Minister said.

    Mr Ford said the bans would apply to pot fishing by both professional and recreational fishers but would not include recreational diving for rock lobster.

    In January, the Gallop Government closed 31 surf breaks in the Capes region to rock lobster fishing boats over eight metres in length.

    In keeping with the latest decision, Mr Ford said all pot fishing, including the recreational sector, would now be banned at all 31 breaks.

    The Minister said Hamelin Bay, Gnarabup-Margaret River and Cowaramup would remain open to recreational rock lobster pot fishing.

    The latest changes will come into effect at the start of the rock lobster season. More information can be found on the Fisheries Department website at

    Mr Ford said the Gallop Government was protecting and enhancing Western Australia’s unique lifestyle and environment.

    Minister's office - 9425 4200