The Australia Day Long weekend saw many anglers take advantage of the idyllic weather and go trout fishing.
Over the weekend Officers from Inland Fisheries, Tasmania Police and Marine and Safety Tasmania patrolled waters state wide.
Overall 274 recreational angling inspections were completed. 121 recreational boating inspections were also conducted.
Under Inland Fisheries rules three people were found to be fishing without a licence, and one person was found to be using bait in an artificial lures only water.
Under Marine and Safety Tasmania rules four people were found not wearing their PFDs. Three vessels were found to be exceeding 5 knots in restricted areas and two had failed to display their boat registration numbers correctly.
Eight Conditional Cautions were issued for the wearing PFD’s that did not comply with the new AS4758.1 standard. The older style PFDs (AS1512 standard) were made obsolete on January 1st this year.
On Friday 22nd January 2021 David George McDERMOTT appeared in Devonport Magistrates Court on 34 charges relating to the illegal taking of whitebait.
Mr McDERMOTT pleaded guilty and was convicted on all charges. He was fined $13260.
The charges related to the taking of whitebait from the Mersey River in October 2019. The Mersey River was closed to the taking of whitebait at the time. Mr McDERMOTT was found by our Officers taking whitebait on several days.
Magistrate Jackie Harnett acknowledged the fragility of the whitebait fishery in her sentencing submission.
Whitebait regulations are in place for a reason. The fishery is fragile because of over fishing between the 1940’s and 1960’s. Illegal fishing for whitebait puts the species and recreational fishery at risk.
On Monday 25th January an angler found a gill net set in Four Springs Lake. He immediately reported it to IFS officers.
Officers responded quickly and removed the net. It was found to contain 6 trout. Thankfully the net had not captured any platypus.
We thank the angler that quickly passing the information on.
If you notice any illegal fishing activity in our inland waters please report it to us on either 0438 338 530 (Compliance phone number) or 1300 INFISH (1300 463 474). Our Officers can’t be everywhere so your help to protect our valuable inland fisheries is greatly appreciated!
Perfect weather was forecast and with the Meander River running at 60cms it was time for another fast water spin session today. I was in the river by 7:20am and the conditions were perfect as forecast, the river was running cool and clear it couldn't have been better, all I needed now was to find the trout. This morning I decided to give the Black Fury a go, the Black Fury inline spinner is the first lure I caught a trout on some 55 years ago and it's the lure that got me into trout fishing. It's been a while since I used one and with the water being at the right height today I thought it was well worth giving it a go using the cast and drift method in the fast waters. With the water running at 60cms there's a lot of flat waters on both sides of the river and I'm hoping most will be holding trout.
From the CEO
Right now, recreational fishers are out in their tens of thousands around Tasmania, supporting small communities and businesses with their purchases. Our ability to have a positive impact on regional and remote communities that have been doing in tough in 2020 should not be underestimated. Someone recently said to me that recreational fishers don’t generate “new money” into Tasmania like the commercial sector does when it exports fish. That is largely true but it’s not the full picture. Each fishing sector plays an important economic role in Tasmania. As recreational fishers, our role is to circulate money throughout Tasmania. By fishing in coastal and regional communities, we are like veins – we pump money from the city centres of Tasmania out into the regions. Of Tasmania’s 29 Local Council Areas, 20 touch Tasmania’s coast line and with over 100,000 Tasmanians fishing every year our ability to support those communities through the simple act of going fishing is real.
As the Government continues to develop it’s 10-Year Recreational Fishing Strategy, TARFish continues to advocate for you with particular focus on: protected access arrangements to key species, infrastructure investment that makes it easier for people to go fishing, and funding for the long-term. We are seeking fair and protected outcomes for recreational fishers and to be fully recognised for the role we play in supporting Tasmania’s economy and its place in Tasmania’s way of life.
The strength of that advocacy comes from you, our members and I warmly welcome the hundreds of new members that have joined us in recent weeks. As the Government-recognised peak body, the Government will listen to our views but how hard they listen and how they respond is up to all of us. The more members we have, the harder we are to ignore. A single and united voice is a compelling one for Governments. As we approach both a state and federal election in the coming months it is important that we work together and throughout February TARFish will be visiting communities around Tasmania to meet with recreational fishers. Dates and locations will be available from our website by the end of the week and we’ll promote them on our Facebook page. I encourage all recreational fishers to come along and share their views on what a positive recreational fishing future looks like and how we can get there. Your views will shape the ongoing development of TARFish’s position on the things that matter most to recreational fishers and how we can work for you to deliver results.
Another top day here in Sheffield today with a maximum temperature of 22 degrees followed up with a gusty South Westerly later in the day, a good day to hit one of the larger rivers again. This time it was the upper reaches of the Mersey River at Weegena that I headed to for the second time this season. My last trip here was quite a while ago, that trip was a real fizzer with just the one brown trout caught and released. I arrived at 7:50am and was in the river by 7:56am, the water was running very clear so I started the session off with a Mepps #0 Stone Fly Bug spinner.
After a forty five minute drive to the Meander River this morning (6:45am) only to find the river bottom full of green cotton like algae, it wasn't worth putting the gear on to fish the area so headed back to chase the Mersey River trout. By the time I reached my entry point in the Mersey River it was 8:55 am, not the early start I had originally planned. I started the spin session off in the same area that I've fished on my last couple of trips here, mainly because it's been giving up a few trout on those trips, so while the iron's hot stick with it. The river level was down marginally since my last spin session which was good, the river bottom was still it's usual slimy, slippery self though. The first stretch of fast water I fished with the #1 Aglia Furia was the one that's given up several rainbows, today it didn't give a yelp, not a single touch from a trout.
When is the new standard effective from?
From 1 January 2021, all life jackets in Tasmania on recreational boats will need to be approved to AS4758.
Mild weather conditions again today had me heading off to the sheltered tannin water in the bush, the same little stream I was in a few days ago. This time I started fishing the stream close to where I ended the spin session last time when I managed to catch and release five wild browns. It was 3:15 pm when I hit the light tannin coloured water that had filtered sunlight on it, the lure of choice was a Mepps gold #00 Aglia. This time it's not the old well used one like I normally use, this one has only been used a couple of times. It took me twenty minutes before I had my first hit from a trout in a small pocket of water, it was hooked for a short time, it tossed the lure on the first leap from the stream. A little further upstream I had a hit and miss from another brown, not long after that it was trout on.
|Fisheries Officer Paul Middleton
with a brown trout from
Four Springs Lake
During May 2020 we carried out a major survey of the fish population at Four Springs Lake to assess the trout population. This information along with past stockings numbers and angler catch information collected since 1999, have been assessed and reported. A final report is now available on the IFS website at: About Us - Publications - Fishery Performance Assessment Reports.
Additionally, our hard working compliance staff have been out collecting some interesting creel data from fishers at Four Springs Lake. Since the start of the season, 675 fishers have been checked at Four Springs. Of these, 383 had been fishing for one or more hours, while the remainder were just about to start fishing or had only just commenced. The average time spent fishing by these fishers was 4 hours.
Of the 383 fishers interviewed, they caught 326 brown trout and 132 rainbow trout. Table 1 below shows the number of brown trout caught and kept, the number of sized fish caught and released, and the number of undersized fish returned.
Handy information and links to fisheries,weather etc
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Hello everyone, I thought it would be a good time to introduce myself.
My name is Stephen Smith and I have been managing the website tasfish.com since May 2009.
It has been an epic journey of learning and discovery and I am indebted to Mike Stevens for his help, support and patience.
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Recently Atlantic salmon seems to be a very hot topic amongst local anglers, especially those in the south of the state in the D'Entrecasteaux area. Northern anglers should take a close look at the Tamar as there are opportunities here as well.
The recent "great escape" has provided a perfect opportunity for fresh and saltwater anglers alike to experience some truly memorable sport. Tasmania's pristine, clean and cool waters are the perfect nursery for the Atlantic Salmon and as our local fish farms produce more and more fresh quality seafood it is a fact that there are going to be tangible consequences.