Gordon Hill

Gordon Hill

-

    Lifting of ceiling on rock lobster pots

    21/11/1992 12:00 AM
     
     
    A ceiling on the number of pots which could be accumulated on a west coast rock lobster licence, would be lifted from 130 to 150, Fisheries Minister Gordon Hill said today.
     
    This followed a recommendation made by the Rock Lobster Industry Advisory Committee.
     
    "The temporary ceiling of 130 pots per boat previously imposed, has been reviewed by the committee," Mr Hill said.
     
    "After extensive discussion with the industry, the committee decided that 150 pots per boat would be a more appropriate level, given other stock conservation measures in place for this season.
     
    "A permanent freeze on the acquisition or transfer of pots to licence holders with more than 150 pots has been put in place."
     
    Mr Hill also cautioned rock lobster fishers against investing in underwater cameras as fishing aids.
     
    He said the introduction of new fishing technology was a major cause of increasing fishing effort in an already stretched resource.
     
    "For the good of the fishery, and for the future of the industry, the practice must be controlled," he said.
     
    "Conservation of the lobster breeding stock should be our major concern.
     
    "As a result, the RLIAC will be evaluating the potential impact of underwater cameras as a fishing aid this season.
     
    "Anyone already using these cameras will need to register their use with the Fisheries Department.
     
    "Therefore, I strongly advise fishers against investing in this technology until the committee has completed its examination."
     
    Mr Hill added that existing rules for boat replacements based on seven and ten pots per metre of boat length, would remain unchanged.
     
    The six-year minimum age for boat replacement, without a reduction in pots, would also continue to apply.
     
    New stock conservation controls introduced this season would be subject to a thorough review at the end of the season.