- Abalone fishing season commences this Saturday, 8 December
- 17,000 fishers will target abalone over the summer months
- World Class seafood on the doorstep of Perth for the community
- Authorities urge fishers to take appropriate safety precautions to ensure their safety and that of their friends and family.
With changes to the Metro abalone season implemented last year, including moving the season start date to December, aimed to improve fisher safety and provide licenced fishers with more opportunity for improved catches, authorities are hopeful it will result in all fishers returning home safely.
Recfishwest CEO Dr Andrew Rowland is looking forward to the abalone season in the metro area, with some of the 17,000 licensed fishers set to descend on popular abalone fishing spots.
“We’re blessed here in WA to have access to world class seafood and abalone fishing gives people a ‘hands on’ fishing experience,” Dr Rowland said.
“Abalone fishing is a great way to get out and get your hands dirty enjoying a different type of fishing experience but we are urging all abalone fishers to be prepared, wear the correct clothing, understand your swimming ability and if you’re not confident, simply don’t go in the water!”
“Moving all of the metropolitan fishing days into summer reduces the chances of adverse weather impacting abalone fishers and improves safety however its still crucial that people exercise caution and check the weather and swell conditions before taking to the water.”
Surf Life Saving WA General Manager Chris Peck echoed Dr Rowland’s comments, calling on fishers to exercise caution and know their limits.
“While many of our surf life saving clubs will put on additional volunteer patrols, supported by our Wesfarmers Jet ski teams, the Westpac Lifesaver Rescue Helicopter, and drone patrol, we remind fishers that the presence of these services cannot guarantee their safety,” said Mr Peck.
Despite the more favourable weather conditions experienced last year, we still saw a drowning death which demonstrates the need for fishers to take responsibility for their personal safety, such as fishing at a patrolled location.”
“With 5 drowning deaths since 2012, this continues to be an extremely dangerous activity and we urge those planning on participating to not risk their lives, or those of friends and family, in efforts to reach their quota,” said Mr. Peck.
Surf Life Saving WA’s website, containing information about patrolled fishing locations and suitable equipment needed, is available here www.mybeach.com.au/abalone and is a valuable resource for all abalone fishers despite their level of ability.
With thousands of recreational abalone fishers expected to take to the inshore reefs around the metropolitan coastline during the one-hour fishing periods from 7am-8am over 4 days between December and February, Recfishwest (RFW), DPIRD and Surf Life Saving WA (SLSWA) are urging fishers to prepare in advance and exercise caution before taking to the water.
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