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FADS boost bluewater fishing

BLUEWATER anglers in NSW are expected to enjoy greater success over summer due to the deployment of fish aggregating devices (FADs) now complete at 25 locations along the state’s coast.

Department of Primary Industries (DPI) Fisheries Enhancement Manager, Heath Folpp, said FADs are strategically placed at key fishing spots along the coast each year over the warmer months to improve recreational fishing opportunities.

“Deployment has been completed on the north coast with FADs in place in the Tweed, Byron, Ballina and Evans Head areas,” Dr Folpp said.

“Further down the coast FADs have been deployed at Crowdy Head, Forster, Port Stephens and Newcastle.

“Deployment on the south coast provides opportunities for fishers in the Batemans Bay and Eden areas. Full details of where each FAD is located can be found online at the DPI Fish Aggregating Device web page.”

FADs are yellow, spherical buoys with a flashing beacon for safe navigation, which tend to attract surface-dwelling fish such as mahi-mahi and other fast growing pelagic fish.

“Fish are attracted to the structure of the FAD, possibly for use as a resting place or geographical reference point,” Dr Folpp said.

“Anglers appreciate FADs because they create new fishing opportunities, while easing the pressure on existing popular fishing reefs and spots. FADs have proven increasingly popular with anglers since they were first installed in 2002.”

The FAD program is funded through the NSW Recreational Fishing Saltwater Trust using monies raised from the recreational fishing licence fee.

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