WA fishos reminded to play it safe this Easter

Department of Fisheries reminds anglers to be aware of new fishing regulations

The WA Department of Fisheries has urged fishers contemplating casting a line or going boating this Easter to be aware of new State-wide recreational fishing rules. Anglers are also reminded to fish safely and responsibly, especially if travelling to unfamiliar territory.

According to Fisheries principal policy officer, Nathan Harrison, people tend to go fishing over Easter more than at any other time of the year, with traditional hot spots around Busselton, Bunbury, Augusta, Margaret River, Denmark, Albany and Esperance.

"Popular Easter fishing getaways like the south-west and great-southern regions are notorious for rapidly changing conditions that can put even experienced fishers at risk," said Harrison.

"If you intend to fish from the rocks, first study the wave and weather patterns for 10 to 15 minutes before taking family and friends near the water; even in moderate conditions, the granite coastline south of Cape Naturaliste can be perilous."

Harrison added that a pre-Easter spike in allocations of the new annual Recreational Fishing from Boat Licence (RFBL) was a strong indication that a large number of people were keen to head out fishing.

The $30 RFBL is compulsory for fishing from a motorised boat anywhere in WA.

The licence is said to be "family friendly" because it allows unlicensed anglers to fish from a boat, provided they are in the company of someone holding a valid licence and the bag limit for that licence holder is not exceeded.

Harrison said that public support and uptake of the new RFBL had been very positive, with over 35,000 of the State-wide licences issued since March 2 this year. He said all the funds went straight back into recreational fishing management.

"The new RBFL will provide a database of recreational boat fishers across the state, providing new information about how our fisheries are used," he said.

Visit www.fishforthefuture.com.au for more information.

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