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Government of Western Australia - Department of Fisheries

Fishing for barramundi in the Fitzroy River in the Kimberley is one of WA's truly iconic fishing experiences. Make sure you help keep it that way by sticking to the fishing rules.

Wednesday 12 June 2019

Know the northern fishing rules

If you’re heading to the north of the state for a fishing adventure, make sure you are aware of the fishing rules that apply.

When battling barramundi, you may only use a single rod, reel and line or a single hand-held line. There is a maximum daily bag and possession limit of two barramundi.

The minimum legal size is 550mm, and it must not exceed the 800mm maximum legal size. Unless you’re preparing it to be eaten immediately, barramundi must be carried whole at sea, on estuaries and on rivers, and must also be landed whole, although it can be gutted and gilled.

Make sure you don’t get muddled with your ‘muddies’ either! WA’s two types of mud crabs  – green and brown – appear very similar but have different size limits. Look for the spines or bumps on their claws to tell them apart.

Green mud crabs have a minimum legal size (carapace width, from tip to tip of the spikes) of 150mm, while the minimum size limit for brown mud crabs is 120mm. Undersize mud crabs and ‘berried’ (egg-carrying) female mud crabs are totally protected and must be immediately released.

There is a daily bag limit of five (green and brown combined) mud crabs per fisher and a boat limit of 10 when there are two or more people on board with a Recreational Fishing from Boat Licence (RFBL).

And don’t get caught in a trap - many travellers to WA don’t realise that using or being in possession of fish traps in or near WA waters is widely banned due to the potential impacts on aquatic life.

Travellers moving to or from others states who are carrying fish traps must ensure they are securely stowed in or on their vehicle, away from the water’s edge, at all times while in WA. Fish traps must not be carried on boats in WA waters at any time.

Fishing in the northern part of the state can be the experience of a lifetime. Keep that magic opportunity available for the future and for all by sticking to the rules.  

Last modified: 12/06/2019 2:46 PM

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