Men fined for illegal whiting haul

TWO recreational fishers have been convicted and fined $10,500 in total in the Hervey Bay Magistrates Court for illegal fishing offences.

Queensland Boating and Fisheries Patrol (QBFP) district manager Greg Bowness said the two men were charged with significantly exceeding legal possession limits of trumpeter (winter) whiting.

“Following a complaint from a member of the public, QBFP officers executed a search warrant at one fisher’s residence locating 73 bags of trumpeter (winter) whiting fillets (a total of 650 fish) in a freezer, and a commercial fishing net in a shed,” Mr Bowness said.

“Pleading guilty to the charges, the fisher was convicted and fined $6,500 and the fish and net forfeited.

“A road side search of the second fisher’s vehicle and boat located an esky containing 60 bags of fish fillets (totalling 500 fish).

“Pleading guilty to the charges, the second fisher was convicted and fined $4,000 and his fish forfeited.

“In both cases, the fishers admitted to knowingly exceeding the legal possession limits of 50 trumpeter (winter) whiting per person.”

Mr Bowness said the fines served as an important warning to fishers to stick to possession limits.

“If we are to continue to enjoy fishing, everyone must share the resources and abide by the laws,” he said.

“A possession limit refers to the total number of fish an individual can legally take and have in their possession at any one time – it does not apply on a per day basis.

“This includes the fish you have caught previously that are in your esky, on your boat or in the freezer at home.

“Fishers need to familiarise themselves with the size and possession limits for all of Queensland’s regulated species by checking”

If you suspect illegal fishing, whether seen in person or online, report it to the Fishwatch hotline on 1800 017 116. It’s important to remember not to engage the person, as this can compromise an investigation.

For more information on fishing rules in Queensland, visit or call 13 25 23.

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