Queensland fisheries have today ‘put the bite’ on illegal crabbing.
A Brisbane man convicted of illegal crab fishing has had his boat destroyed as the State Government takes a hard line on fishing offences.
Rhianna Bull reports.
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An illegal fishing boat faced a crushing end this morning.
The convicted crabber went to elaborate lengths to disguise his activities altering the small vessel to incorporate a secret hull.
The fisheries department determined the boat could not be re-modified and re-sold therefore it had to be destroyed.
Steve Dunn, District Manager for the Pinkenba Boating and Fisheries Control: “Most people are quite good but you will get people where the mighty dollar drives them further than it should and that’s the kind of particular operation we’ve uncovered here.”
The State Government took the opportunity to release a new Responsible Crabbing information package to provide fishers with information about the legal requirements of crabbing and pot construction.
Tim Mulherin, Minister for Primary Industries: “In this particular incident the crabber was caught at Pinkenba boat ramp and the matter was dealt with in the courts in June.”
As well as having his boat seized, the fisherman was fined $5,000 for possessing 22 excess, 10 undersized and 13 female mud crabs.
Since the first of January there have been 145 infringement notices issued totalling $48,000 in on-the-spot fines.
Greg Ahern, Wynnum Seafood: “Yeah it’s the illegal fisherman that are destroying the industry; professional fisherman are doing the right thing, it’s not in their interests to damage their own livelihood.”
Male mud crabs have a size limit of 15 centimetres and a bag limit of 10.
It is illegal to catch female mud crabs in Queensland.
Rhianna Bull, QUT News.