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The Days Are Getting Warmer And The Fish Are Bitin

Ken A

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This long weekend will mark the start of the annual fishing season for many anglers throughout NSW and those who intend to throw a line in are being reminded to obey the fishing rules and fish safely.

NSW Department of Primary Industries (DPI) Director, Compliance Operations, Paul O’Connor, said the October long weekend is traditionally the start of many anglers annual fishing season.

“We find that many anglers start fishing again each October long weekend after putting the fishing gear away for winter,” said Mr O’Connor.

“We would like to remind anglers that they need to have a recreational fishing licence to fish in all waters of NSW, unless they are otherwise exempt and that they must carry it with them while fishing.

“They can be bought on the Internet at www.dpi.nsw.gov.au, at more than 1200agents includingboat and tackle stores, NSW Kmart Stores, Shell Select service stations in NSW, Victoria, Queensland and the ACT, or by calling 1300 369 365,” he said.

Fees raised from the sale of the recreational fishing licence are placed into Recreational Fishing Trusts, one for saltwater and one for freshwater. Expenditure from the Trusts is overseen by anglers and supports a wide variety of state-wide programs to improve recreational fishing. Examples include the state’s record breaking fish stocking program, and the creation of Recreational Fishing Havens, fish cleaning tables and FADs.

“Anglers also need to be aware of the fishing rules that govern their sport, and in particular bag and size limits. DPI Fisheries Officers will be out in force over the coming months to answer angler’s questions and make sure they’re obeying the rules.”

Details of the State’s recreational fishing rules are published in saltwater and freshwater fishing guides. The 2005/06 guide has just been released and is available from most bait and tackle shops, recreational fishing licence agents and DPI (Fisheries) offices. Copies can also be viewed online at www.dpi.nsw.gov.au

“We also want fishers to be mindful of their own safety whilst out and about. Rock fishers and boat users should be especially careful. Tips on boating and rockfishing safety are available at www.safewaters.nsw.gov.au,” said Mr O’Connor.

Anyone with information on illegal fishing activity is urged to contact their local Fisheries Office or call the Fishers Watch phone line on 1800 043 536.

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