A rogue fisherman has been caught earlier this week with nearly eight times the daily bag limit of blue swimmer crabs.
As a result of a public tip-off to Fishwatch, Fisheries Officers at St Kilda apprehended a 39-year-old Salisbury man returning to his vehicle with his catch of 158 blue swimmer crabs. The bag limit for blue swimmer crabs is 20.
Not only had the recreational fisher been found to have taken 138 crabs in excess of the daily bag limit, almost 90 per cent of the crabs were undersize.
With the onset of warm weather, fishers enjoying the conditions are reminded to keep an eye out for those doing the wrong thing with our fish stocks.
Minister for Primary Industries and Regional Development Tim Whetstone said this incident is a timely reminder for fishers to follow the relevant fishing rules and regulations.
“The majority of recreational fishers follow the rules to ensure the long-term sustainability of our fish stocks for future generations to enjoy,” said Minister Whetstone.
“This sort of blatant poaching by a minority of fishers has the potential to put South Australian fisheries at risk.
“Blue swimmer crabs have been a success story over recent years with strong numbers and an increase in their distribution. Over-fishing and harvest of undersized crabs could put future stocks at risk.
“Fishers can help by reporting any illegal or suspicious behaviour to Fishwatch on 1800 065 522. Reports can also be made via the SA Recreational Fishing Guide app.
“I thank the Fishwatch caller for providing the information that led to the blue crab detection at St Kilda.”
This is a serious incident and as a result the man will be referred for consideration of prosecution. The maximum penalty that can be handed down by the Courts is $5000.
For more information visit https://www.pir.sa.gov.au/fishing