Crab protection measures announced

: Recfish CEO Andrew Rowland, Fisheries Minister Dave Kelly and Mandurah MLA David Templeman on the eastern foreshore in Mandurah.
: Recfish CEO Andrew Rowland, Fisheries Minister Dave Kelly and Mandurah MLA David Templeman on the eastern foreshore in Mandurah.

THE State Government has announced a raft of measures to protect the blue swimmer crab for generations to come.

The measures were announced today by Fisheries Minister Dave Kelly and were made after considering public feedback and a proposal from peak fishing bodies.

The new measures include:

– A new seasonal crabbing closure in all waters from the Swan and Canning Rivers to Minninup Beach (about 15km south of Bunbury) will apply to recreational and commercial fishers and charter operators from September 1 to November 30 each year.

– A voluntary buyback for commercial licences from oceanic crab fisheries in the Cockburn and Warnbro Sounds managed crab fisheries and the Mandurah to Bunbury Developmental Crab Fishery, leading to their permanent closure to commercial crab fishing.

– Geographe Bay will remain open to recreational blue swimmer crab fishing all year, however recreational fishers will now only be allowed to take a maximum of five females in their bag limit of 10 crabs.

– A new bag limit of five blue swimmer crabs will apply to recreational fishers in the Swan and Canning Rovers to support a trophy crab fishery on Perth’s doorstep.

These new measures will allow for strong recruitment of crab stocks, ensuring availability to Western Australian fishers and consumers.

The existing boat limit of 20 blue swimmer crabs in the West Coast region, which includes the Swan and Canning rivers, will remain unchanged, allowing plenty of opportunity to catch a feed to share with family and friends.

For further details on the review and these important management changes visit Fish WA.