Management arrangements that effectively control the level of commercial fishing
effort on Snapper stocks, optimise Snapper spawning and recruitment, and support a
sustainable Snapper fishery.
The following proposal comprises four components, which are to be considered
together as a package of management arrangements for the Snapper fishery.
1. Commercial daily trip limits
2. Seasonal spawning closure
3. Spatial spawning closures; and
4. Fishery specific access arrangements
1. Commercial Trip Limits
Trip limits provide a direct control on the daily catch of commercial operators
Trip limits can be adjusted over time, if needed
The trip limits would constrain overall commercial catch, remove the peaks in catches, and
spread the catches throughout the year. In addition to decreasing overall commercial catch,
smaller amounts of fish in the market may increase in the return per kilogram to commercial
Trip limits will apply equally to licence holders across the MSF commercial sectors (Marine
Scalefish Fishery, Rock Lobster fisheries, Lakes and Coorong Fishery)
Commercial trip limit proposal:
325 kg (or 400 litre) daily trip limit
No additional fee
Single day trips only
Reduction in the maximum number of long line hooks permitted to be used in the gulfs from 400 to 200 at all times (irrespective of the target species)
650 kg (or 800 litre) daily trip limit of Snapper
Additional fee applies ($4,000 per licence has been proposed this amount is still being discussed)
Prior report required before fishing for snapper
Maximum of two-day trips permitted in the gulfs with a prior report.
Multi day trips are permitted outside the gulfs t
also fish inside the gulf on the same trip)
Commercial licence holders will be required to nominate if they choose the upper tier prior to the start of each financial year. This nomination would apply for the entire financial year and nomination could not be changed during the year.
Funds raised from the fees for the higher tier will be accumulated and used to buy out longline
entitlements over time (a small portion would be used by PIRSA for administration costs incurred)
No change to the maximum 400 hooks permitted to be used outside the gulfs (due to different bottom, fishing conditions and catch composition outside gulfs)
2. Seasonal Spawning Closure
The seasonal spawning closure is designed to protect Snapper stocks during a critical reproductive period when Snapper have aggregated to spawn. Any fishing activity during this period may disrupt and disperse spawning aggregations, impact on spawning success and affect future recruitment to the fishery. December is the peak spawning month for Snapper.
A closure that aligns with the annual spawning period gives Snapper the greatest opportunity to remain aggregated and spawn undisturbed this would maximise egg production, provide the best opportunity for enhanced recruitment and increase fishery production.
Seasonal Spawning Closure Proposal:
It is proposed to extend the existing November spawning closure to run from 1 November to 10 December: This is proposed to be an annual state-wide Snapper fishing closure for all fishing sectors (i.e. extend state-wide closure for 10 days)
3. Spatial Spawning Closures
Spatial closure of important Snapper aggregation areas for an extended period of time would offer
increased protection to Snapper stocks during the annual spawning aggregation period, while lessening the social and economic impacts that would be incurred by larger closure areas (eg. closures of the Gulfs).
Spatial Spawning Closure Proposal:
11 December to 10 January: Two key spatial areas remain closed for Snapper fishing to all sectors to
protect key spawning aggregation areas.
Longlines not permitted to be used in these key Snapper area closures.
Proposed areas are (refer to map p 3):
Northern Gulf St Vincent. Rogues Point to Thompsons Beach). This spatial closure protects a key snapper spawning aggregation area in GSV.
Middle of Spencer Gulf The top of the closure aligns with the bottom of marine fishing area 21, and
the bottom of the closure aligns with a line from north of Wallaroo (Point Riley) to a point north of Arno Bay. This spatial closure protects some key snapper spawning aggregation sites in SG and
leaves other key SG sites open to fishing.
Fishery Specific Access Arrangements
In addition to reducing fishing pressure on Snapper during its critical spawning period, split closures
between the commercial and recreational fishing sectors offer scope to address fishery access issues and reduce conflict on the water.
Fishery Specific Access Proposal:
11 December to 21 December (10 days): Commercial sector only fishing period, including Charter Boat Fishery
22 December to 27 December: Overlap period open to all fishing sectors (commercial, charter and recreational)
28 December to 10 January (14 days): Recreational sector only period, including Charter Boat Fishery
Closures to apply in all cases from midday to midday
Key Snapper Areas Proposed to remain closed to all fishing from 11 December to 10 January