Il­le­gal fish­ing info ‘valu­able’

Pilbara News - - News - Tom Zaun­mayr

An­glers are be­ing urged to re­port any in­ci­dents of sus­pected il­le­gal fish­ing ac­tiv­ity to au­thor­i­ties in­stead of just post­ing gripes on so­cial me­dia pages.

Metal stakes sus­pected to have been used for il­le­gal net­ting were found in Fields Creek in Nickol Bay late last month and posted on Kar­ratha Face­book pages, but the Depart­ment of Fish­eries says it has not been no­ti­fied of the in­ci­dent.

Depart­ment of Fish­eries Kar­ratha su­per­vis­ing fish­eries and ma­rine of­fi­cer Mike Dunne said in­ves­ti­ga­tions were tak­ing place af­ter the depart­ment was alerted when ques­tioned about the in­ci­dent by the Pil­bara News.

“There have been three re­ports of il­le­gal net­ting to the depart­ment’s Fish­watch num­ber so far this year in re­la­tion to the Pil­bara area,” he said.

“An il­le­gal net­ting of­fence de­tected in Port Hed­land by Fish­eries and ma­rine of­fi­cers will be be­fore the South Hed­land Court in Oc­to­ber.

“Any in­for­ma­tion peo­ple pro­vided about il­le­gal fish­ing ac­tiv­ity could be of value. Be­fore peo­ple call they should make a note of how many peo­ple they saw ... what they were do­ing, where it hap­pened ... the type of cars or boats, reg­is­tra­tion num­bers and de­scrip­tions.”

Mr Dunne said in­for­ma­tion about when the in­ci­dent oc­curred, who was in­volved if known, and the type of equip­ment be­ing used was also valu­able to in­ves­ti­ga­tions.

In an­other in­ci­dent in late July, a large num­ber of fish, mostly un­der­sized, were dumped on a beach near Point Sam­son.

Mr Dunne said charges had been laid with re­gards to the mat­ter.

“An in­ves­ti­ga­tion was con­ducted by Kar­ratha Fish­eries and ma­rine of­fi­cers and, as a re­sult, a male per­son was is­sued with a $1000 in­fringe­ment no­tice for the to­tally pro­tected fish (un­der­size) that were dumped,” he said.

“This is a timely re­minder to fish­ers that any to­tally pro­tected fish, un­der­size or over­size, must be re­turned to the wa­ter im­me­di­ately.”

Any­one with in­for­ma­tion on the sus­pected il­le­gal net­ting at Fields Creek should con­tact Fish­Watch on 1800 815 507.

A large num­ber of dumped un­der­size fish reported at Point Sam­son.

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