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NEWSCAST - Recreational Fisheries News June 2023

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NEWSCAST - an information bulletin for recreational fishers from DPI




an information bulletin for recreational fishers


June 2023


How you can help our mighty Mulloway 

Some fishers may have noticed there has been a strong recent recruitment pulse of Mulloway, with reports of large numbers of juvenile fish (40-60cm) in estuaries and off some ocean beaches. This follows three years of high rainfall and associated high estuarine flows. This recruitment pulse represents a great opportunity to boost the stock of this highly valued species.

The latest Status of Australian Fish Stocks Report classifies the stock biomass of Mulloway in NSW as ‘depleted’ (previously referred to as overfished) www.fish.gov.au/report/368-Mulloway-2020.

Recreational, commercial, and Aboriginal fishers are already working together with DPI and independent experts to develop a Harvest Strategy for Mulloway, to set catch rules to help the overall stock recover to a sustainable level.

Mulloway are an important and iconic species in NSW and therefore we are also encouraging all fishers to help ensure as many juveniles as possible of this fast-growing species survive through to maturity, to increase the chances of the stock recovering.

Recreational fishers can do their bit to help our mighty Mulloway by;

  • Adhering to the minimum size limit for Mulloway of 70cm, with a recreational daily bag limit of 1
  • Using lures or using circle hooks when using bait to reduce the risk of injuries caused by deep-hooking (www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/fishing/recreational/fishing-skills/catch-and-release/circle-hooks-benefits-and-tips)
  • Not attempting to remove any deeply set hooks (the line should be cut as close as possible to the mouth and the fish swiftly released)
  • Avoiding aggregations of juvenile fish wherever possible, particularly if they are located in deeper water where they may experience barotrauma symptoms  
  • Being aware of techniques to minimise barotrauma impacts (release fish quickly and use a release weight if necessary)
  • Applying good handling practices to maximise post release survival 

For tips on maximising fish survival, including reducing barotrauma impacts go to the DPI website: www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/fishing/recreational/fishing-skills/catch-and-release.
Fishers are also reminded that DPI Fisheries Compliance operation ‘Mulloway Assist’ continues along the coast, focusing compliance resources on Mulloway catches across all harvest sectors in estuaries and inshore fishing locations.

DPI is providing advice across all fisheries to take every possible precaution to avoid potential bycatch of these juvenile Mulloway to support stock recovery in NSW.






Attention north coast fishers - time to get your final FADs fix for the season!

DPI deployed FADs at 34 locations over the spring to Autumn months and they didn't disappoint with quality reports of catches from Tweed Heads to the Far South Coast.

All FADs are removed during winter for annual maintenance. Retrievals of the Eden to Port Stephens FADs were completed late last month with removal of the Forster to Tweed FADs to follow from mid June.

Please remember to check if FADs are on station before heading out for a day on the water by using the Fishsmart app or https://www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/fishing/recreational/resources/fish-aggregating-devices.

The redeployment of FADs will take place from September for Far North Coast locations through to November for the Far South Coast. The FADs program is another great example of your recreational fishing licence fees at work!






Have You Got Your Free ‘Go Fishing Guide’ yet?

Great news the popular ‘Go Fishing’ series of handbooks has got even larger, with new editions in both salt and freshwater, there are 19 amazing locations available in print and downloadable PDF for your smart phone. Be sure to check the link in the comments for online versions.

The guides are packed full of useful information with easy-to-read maps detailing popular local fishing locations, tips, and techniques for common species plus rules, regs, and as a bonus, some detailed techniques on how the experts catch the most popular species for each location.

There are now 19 guides available including Burrinjuck Dam, Blowering Dam, Snowies Trout Waters, Lake Windamere, Burrendong Dam, Lake St Clair, Botany Bay, Jervis Bay, St Georges Basin, Ulladulla, Bermagui, Coffs Coast, Hawkesbury River, Tuross Head, Lake Macquarie, The Great Lakes, Parramatta and Lane Cove Rivers Wharves and Parks, Middle and North Harbour Parks and Reserves, and Sydney Harbours’ Wharves, Piers and Parks.

They are free and ready to get from various retail tackle stores, tourist centres or download to your smartphone, android, and tablet by following the link in the comments. So grab your favourite ‘Go Fishing’ guide today, and don’t forget to tell your friends as well!

The DPI ‘Go Fishing’ guides are a great example of your fishing fees at work.






Your local Fishing Charter is ready to fish this autumn! 

Autumn is a great time to Go Charter Fishing in NSW. With the weather typically more settled and a host of reef species on offer, including Snapper and Kingfish, now is a great time to head out with one of the many experienced charter operators in NSW. 

With a wealth of knowledge, years of experience, and all the right equipment our charter boat operators will help you have a great day fishing. The easiest way to find a licenced charter boat operator in your region is to use the 'Go Charter Fishing NSW' webpage - https://bit.ly/3pGShdU. Simply navigate to the region you want to go fishing in and select from the available operators and follow the links to book your trip.






Do You Fish Walsh Bay?

Ensure your fishing access to Sydney’s Walsh Bay piers continues by doing the right thing.

Walsh Bay piers are a shared facility, with residents, businesses, tourists, walkers, joggers and trades people all utilising the piers along with fishers.

Common courtesy and respect for other users is a great way to show how fishers conduct their pastime responsibly as they have for many years at Walsh Bay.

Make sure not to obstruct the main walkways and provide room for other users to pass by.

Remember trades people are trying to do a job and be sure to allow them to do this with minimal impedance.

A little respect is all it takes to ensure preserved access to these iconic fishing locations.






Record Breaking Mulloway Stocking!

For the third year running, the dedicated team at DPI’s Port Stephens Fisheries Institute marine hatchery have successfully reared tens of thousands of healthy Mulloway fingerlings as part of the DPI Marine Stocking Program!  🐟🐟🐟

Over Autumn, DPI stocked 66,800 juvenile Mulloway into the Georges River in Sydney’s south, 35,600 fingerlings into the Hastings River, near Port Macquarie on the NSW North Coast and 22,600 fish into Lake Macquarie, north of Sydney. Bringing the grand total of Mulloway fingerlings stocked this Autumn to 125,000 and eclipsing the previous mulloway stocking record of 90,000 under the Marine Stocking Program set in 2021.

This latest stocking activity also builds on last year's successful release of 30,000 juvenile Mulloway into the Georges River, 18,700 fingerlings into Lake Macquarie and 10,200 fingerlings into the Hastings River. 

These baby Mulloway measured up to 60mm on release and are expected to grow very quickly, reaching legal size of 70cm in about 3-4 years. Highly regarded as an iconic sportfish, Mulloway is a key target in the Georges River, Lake Macquarie and the Hastings River Recreational Fishing Havens.  

This recent stocking success builds on previous stocking events involving Dusky Flathead and Mulloway and also follows on from the exciting stocking 400 advanced size Mulloway released into the Georges River in February. This Mulloway marine stocking project is another fantastic example of your fishing fees at work

Visit https://fal.cn/3gxrX for more details.






Coffs Coast and Ballina regions the next in line for Artificial Reefs!

The Coffs Coast and Ballina have been announced as the next regions to receive a new artificial reef.  The NSW Government has deployed nine offshore artificial reefs spanning from Tweed Heads to Merimbula with Forster and Terrigal on schedule to be deployed later this year!

The artificial reefs program continues to impress, producing and holding a wide variety of fish species which are contributing to healthy fish stocks while offering additional quality recreational fishing opportunities. Previous reef installations have proven to be very effective to date in creating productive fish habitat for a diverse range of recreationally important fish species including Kingfish, Samsonfish, Amberjack, Snapper, Silver Trevally, Mulloway, Yellowtail Scad and Blue Mackerel.

DPI is now undertaking further detailed assessments and seeking feedback on proposed locations off the Richmond River mouth, Ballina and Bonville Headland, Sawtell.

Specific design of the reef will be subject to a government tender process but is likely to involve two steel towers. For more information on the project and the other NSW artificial reefs visit the DPI website.

This is another great example of your fishing licence fees at work!

If you have any comments on the proposed offshore artificial reef locations, please email: fisheries.enhancement@dpi.nsw.gov.au or post to:

     NSW DPI
     Fisheries Enhancement
     PO Box 179
     Narooma NSW 2546






Forbes Ladies Pink Fishing Day 🎣🐟

Recently the DPI Fishcare team was privileged to spend a few hours fishing with a group of inspirational and resilient ladies ️at Forbes with the help of the McGrath Foundation.  The ladies from around the local area got to try their hand at fly fishing which they loved and also wet a line with a few lucky enough to land a fish. Although the day comes together for fishing, its underpinning aim is to provide a platform for the ladies to socialise, connect, enjoy good company, share a laugh, whilst hopefully catching a fish or two.

Staff and our dedicated Fishcare volunteers remarked how good it was to see all the smiles and hear chatter and laughter all day. Morning tea was supplied by the local business Forbes Bakery.  A big thank you to our dedicated volunteers Russell and Noleen and the new volunteers Rod and Nicolas for their efforts.










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