Boats seized as snapper laws flouted

ANGLERS are being reminded to obey bag and size limits for snapper following the seizure of boats on Port Phillip Bay by Fisheries Officers.

Fisheries Victoria Acting Education and Enforcement Director Ian Parks said Fisheries Officers had already seized two boats on Port Phillip Bay as a result of anglers exceeding the bag limit just three weeks into the snapper season.

“In the latest case, Fisheries Officers allegedly found 17 snapper aboard a boat this morning at St Kilda,” Mr Parks said.

“When the Officers inspected the boat, the two men on board presented six snapper over 40cm in length, which represented the maximum legal catch.

“But a subsequent search allegedly revealed a further 11 snapper over 40cm in length concealed in a compartment of the boat.”

The two men had their boat and fishing equipment seized and will be charged on summons with exceeding the bag limit for snapper.

The daily bag limit for snapper over 40cm in length is three fish per person. Mr Parks said bag and size limits were in place to ensure the sustainability of Victoria’s fisheries. He said anglers could expect to receive harsh penalties for ignoring the rules, including large fines and the potential seizure of their boat and other equipment.

“The message to anglers is that snapper season is well underway and there is some great fishing to be had in Port Phillip Bay and Westernport Bay,” Mr Parks said.

“The majority of recreational anglers do the right thing and observe the rules. However, a small minority can threaten the sustainability of the fishery by flouting the law. Those
caught can expect fines, seizure of their equipment and potentially fishing bans.”

Mr Parks said Fisheries Officers would be maintaining a strong presence in areas popular with snapper anglers for the remainder of the season.

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