Repeat offender gets big fine for undersized fish

A BRISBANE recreational fisher with a history of fisheries offences has been convicted and fined $3,000 after undersized fish were found in a large catch on the Gold Coast.

A second Brisbane man who was also charged in relation to the matter was fined $2,000 in the Southport Magistrates Court.

Queensland Boating and Fisheries Patrol district manager Rob McDonald said officers sorted through up to 1,000 fish when they inspected a vessel late at night at the Paradise Point boat ramp in May 2015.

“27 undersized regulated fish were detected including 13 bream, 8 tarwhine, 5 dusky flathead and 1 Moses snapper,” Mr McDonald said.

“The fishers told QBFP officers they had been cast net fishing in The Broadwater for several hours and had not measured any of their catch of mostly non-regulated species, that is, fish without size or possession limits.”

The Brisbane men faced four charges of unlawfully possessing undersized fish which are regulated under the Fisheries Act.

Mr McDonald reminded all fishers to correctly measure and count their catch to ensure it complies with Queensland size and possession limits.

“Size and possession limits are in place to protect and conserve fish stocks for current and future generations,” he said.

“Fishers should use a sturdy ruler with an end stop to measure the length of their fish or a crab gauge to measure their crabs.”

“If a fisher catches an undersized or unwanted fish they should return it to the water immediately, taking as much care as possible to avoid causing the fish any injury.”

If you suspect illegal fishing report it to the Fishwatch hotline on 1800 017 116.

For more information on Queensland fishing rules, visit the QLD Fisheries website, call 13 25 23 or download the free Qld Fishing App.

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