Abalone season starts this Saturday for recreational fishers

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Yanchep Lagoon is a popular spot for abalone fishers in the West Coast zone which extends from Moore River to the Busselton jetty. Picture: Anita McInnes

ABALONE season starts this Saturday for licensed recreational fishers in the West Coast zone extending from Moore River to the Busselton jetty.

Fishing is only allowed between 7am and 8am.

The forecast weather and ocean conditions indicate a medium risk with Surf Life Saving WA (SLSWA) surf prediction modelling recommending the fishing hour go ahead on December 11, with appropriate caution.

Wave heights between 1m and 1.5m are expected, with moderate swell and onshore winds and temperatures around 20 degrees.

Due to an increase in sea surface temperatures in recent years, the sustainable recreational catch target range of 25 tonnes to 29 tonnes has been set for the 2021-22 season.

Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD) senior management officer Nick Blay said fishers should observe the safety messages and not rush out on to the reefs to collect their abalone.

“The healthy abalone stocks off the Perth coast means there will be enough abalone for fishers and they should always keep in mind that no catch is worth risking a life for,” he said.

“Safety is a key priority at all times for the department and we thank the SLSWA volunteers who monitor the abalone fishing hours to focus on the safety of fishers.

“It is important recreational fishers comply with the bag and size limits for abalone to ensure this resource continues to be sustainable.

“DPIRD Compliance officers will be at WCZ abalone fishing locations, to check compliance this Saturday and throughout the rest of the season.”

More on abalone fishing rules is available at www.fish.wa.gov.au

SLSWA has abalone fishing safety tips at: https://www.mybeach.com.au/safety-rescue-services/coastal-recreation/abalone/

  • SLSWA modelling uses the best available information on these conditions from multiple sources and rates the risks for factors, such as wind speed, swell, tide and swell period.