Recreational fishing rule changes

On 1 December 2016, South Australian fishing rules for 26 species changed.

The new rules followed a State Government review of recreational fishing in South Australia in early 2016, which included a review of the current size, bag and boat limits and management arrangements for some of the state’s most popular species.

With more than 277,000 men, women and children engaging in recreational fishing in South Australia each year and to ensure there are enough fish for the future, limits are set on the number and size of fish that can be taken.

New fishing rules

From 1 December 2016, the following new rules apply to the 26 species below.

Download the new Recreational Fishing limits brochure (PDF 764.9 KB).

NB. All limits apply statewide unless specified otherwise.

Albacore

Size (cm): no size limit
Bag limit (per person): 2
Boat limit (per boat): 6


Australian Herring (Tommy Ruff)

Size (cm): no size limit
Bag limit (per person): 40
Boat limit (per boat): 120


Bloodworm

Bag limit (per person): 4 litres


Blue Swimmer Crab (combined limits with Sand Crabs)

Size (cm): 11
Bag limit (per person): 20 
Boat limit (per boat): 60


Bream

Size (cm): 30
Bag limit (per person): 10 
Boat limit (per boat): 30


Catfish (Cooper Creek)

Fully Protected


Catfish (Hyrtl’s / Silver Tandan)

Size (cm): no size limit
Bag limit (per person): 10
Boat limit (per boat): 30


Congolli (All species)

Size (cm): no size limit
Bag limit (per person): 2 
Boat limit (per boat): 6


Harlequin Fish (All species)

Size (cm): no size limit
Bag limit (per person): 2
Boat limit (per boat): 6


King George Whiting

East of 136°E: (including all Gulf waters)

Size (cm): 32
Bag limit (per person): 10
Boat limit (per boat): 30
Possession limit: 72 fish or 10 kg of fillets or where in possession of fish and fillets 36 fish and up to 5 kg of fillets.

West of 136°E:

Size (cm): 30
Bag limit (per person): 10 
Boat limit (per boat): 30
Possession limit: 72 fish or 10 kg of fillets or where in possession of fish and fillets 36 fish and up to 5 kg of fillets.

A spatial spawning closure has been introduced for the month of May. Go to the fishing closures page.


Mulloway

Within the Coorong:

Size (cm): 46-75
Bag limit (per person): 10
Boat limit (per boat): 30

Size (cm): >75
Bag limit (per person): 2
Boat limit (per boat): 6 

All other waters:

Size (cm): >82
Bag limit (per person): 2
Boat limit (per boat): 6


Pipi

East of 136 ̊ E:

Size (cm): 3.5
Bag limit (per person): 300
Vehicle limit (per vehicle): 900*
Possession limit: 1200 

West of 136 ̊ E:

Size (cm): 3.5
Bag limit (per person): 100
Vehicle limit (per vehicle): 300*
Possession limit: 1200

*This is a motor vehicle limit that applies when three or more people are present


Samsonfish

Size (cm): 88
Bag limit (per person): 1
Boat limit (per boat): 3


Sand Crab (combined limits with Blue Swimmer Crab)

Size (cm): 10
Bag limit (per person): 20
Boat limit (per boat): 60


Scallop

Size (cm): 6.5
Bag limit (per person): 50
Boat limit (per boat): 150


Sea Urchin

Size (cm): no size limit
Bag limit (per person): 20
Boat limit (per boat): 60


Snapper

Size (cm): 38-60
Bag limit (per person): 5
Boat limit (per boat): 15

Size (cm): >60 
Bag limit (per person): 2
Boat limit (per boat): 6

A statewide closure applies from midday 1 November to midday 15 December.


Southern Garfish

Size (cm): 23
Bag limit (per person): 30
Boat limit (per boat): 90


Spangled Perch

Size (cm): no size limit
Bag limit (per person): 15 
Boat limit (per boat): 45


Trevally (all species)

Size (cm): 24
Bag limit (per person): 20
Boat limit (per boat): 60


Western Blue Groper

Size (cm): Minimum 60, Maximum 100
Bag limit (per person): 1
Boat limit (per boat): 3

A closure applies at all times in both Gulfs, Investigator Strait and Backstairs Passage.


Whaler Shark (Bronze & Dusky)

Size (cm): no size limit
Bag limit (per person): 1 
Boat limit (per boat): 3


Wrasse - All species excluding Western Blue Groper

Size (cm): Minimum 25, Maximum 35
Bag limit (per person): 5
Boat limit (per boat): 15


Yabby

Size (cm): no size limit
Bag limit (per person): 200 
Boat limit (per boat): 600


Yellowfin Tuna

Bag and boat limits have been removed.

Yellowtail Kingfish

Spencer Gulf waters only:

Size (cm): 45-60
Bag limit (per person): 10 
Boat limit (per boat): 30

All waters:

Size (cm): >60
Bag limit (per person): 1
Boat limit (per boat): 3


New King George Whiting changes

New arrangements to improve the stock status of one of the state’s most iconic and popular species, King George Whiting, are also introduced.

The changes were:

  • Reduction in the statewide daily bag limit to 10 and boat limit to 30 (previously 12 and 36)
  • Increase in the legal minimum size limit to 32 cm (previously 31cm) in all waters East of Cape Catastrophe on the tip of the Eyre Peninsula at 136 ̊ E (including all Gulf waters)
  • Introduction of a spawning spatial closure for King George Whiting from 1-31 May in an area of southern Spencer Gulf, southern Gulf St Vincent and Investigator Strait to protect this key spawning area during a critical reproductive period. Download the King George Whiting spawning spatial closure map (PDF 403.0 KB). During this time, the take, targeting, and possession of King George Whiting by all fishing sectors (recreational, charter and commercial) is prohibited in the closure area. The first King George Whiting spawning spatial closure will commence 1 May 2017.

These arrangements were introduced to improve the stock status of King George Whiting and manage the catch within each sectors allocated share. King George Whiting stocks in the Spencer Gulf and Gulf St Vincent / Kangaroo Island regions are currently classified as ‘transitional-depleting’.

Downloads

More information

Page Last Reviewed: 30 Nov 2016
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