Netters gloat as slaughter continues

IN the wake of recent reports of hundreds of netted bream being dumped in bushland at Seal Rocks on the NSW North Coast and the large scale haul netting of black bream in landlocked lakes on the NSW far South Coast, Fisho has received these images of a recent bream haul reportedly posted on Facebook by gloating professional netters.

The images were taken at Port Stephens and supplied to Fisho by an unidentified local source.

As can be seen by the images, no care has been taken to ensure these hundreds of netted bream arrive at the co-op – or wherever they were unltimately headed – in the best possible condition for human consumption.

The fish have just been loaded into the back of a tabletop ute with no care taken whatsoever. The fish would be crushed, bruised and covered in waste and whatever was lying in the back of the ute. To make matters worse, no ice is used to ensure they at least stay “fresh”. Who knows what bacterial infections and disease the poor unfortunates who actually paid good money for these fish end up contracting. Or maybe the fish were just dumped?

Anyway you look at this, it’s is another example of the blatant misuse of a valuable resource. There is no doubt that these fish would have generated far more in tourism dollars for the local Port Stephens economy than they ever would at a fish market. Yet the Fisheries Minister and her department continue to support this sort of behaviour? Does Ms Hodgekinson and her officials really think the public wants to eat fish squashed in the back of a ute? These images show once and for all that some so-called “professional” fishermen have little, if any, respect for fish or the public.

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Further to our recent coverage of the continuing netting scandal, Fisho understands that a campaign by prominent fishing identity Steve Starling to have haul netting in South Coast estuaries banned or limited has been largely ignored by NSW Fisheries. Officials reportedly told Starlo last week that they have no plans to address this destructive practice any time soon.

Fisho also understands that NSW Fisheries Minister Katrina Hodgkinson’s office has been bombarded by anglers calling for an immediate halt to all unsustainable netting. The Minister’s staffers and Fisheries officials have reportedly pleaded with rec fishing identities to stop the barrage of phone calls and emails. Stop? No way! Fisho suggests the protest should be intensified forthwith to force our recalcitrant Fisheries Minister to actually do her job.

Feel free to contact the Minister’s office at:

The Hon. Katrina Hodgkinson, MP
Level 30 Governor Macquarie Tower
1 Farrer Place
PH: (02) 92285210
FAX: (02) 92285969

Or email her at or

The Minister can quite easily stop the slaughter of our valuable sportfish. It’s up to us to “convince” her that it needs to happen. Keep the pressure up, boys!

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