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Midnight Abalone Bust Catches VIC Poachers

Two men will be charged on summons after they were allegedly caught taking abalone in excess of the catch limit during the closed season at Portsea on Friday August 7 2015.


Fisheries Victoria Director of Education and Enforcement Ian Parks said officers conducting a routine patrol of the ocean beach at London Bridge apprehended the men just before midnight.


A 42-year-old man from Cranbourne will be charged on summons with taking 49 abalone during the closed season, at night, and with taking undersized abalone.


Both men are also expected to be charged on summons for allegedly obstructing fisheries officers in their duties which carries a maximum penalty of $18,000 fine, 12 months’ jail or both.


There is a permanent closed season placed on the take of abalone from Central Victorian waters, except for nominated open days during the year.


Furthermore, abalone can only be taken during daylight hours, with the take of abalone between sunset and sunrise prohibited.


“Abalone poaching threatens the sustainability of the fishery and opportunities for future generations of fishers,” Mr Parks said.


“This is a good reminder that strict restrictions are in place to protect our resources and ensure they are shared among all users.”


Fishers are also reminded that restrictions on the harvest of abalone and other shellfish from the intertidal zone apply, as do bag limits.


Shellfish can only be taken in more than two metres of water to protect these vulnerable areas.


During open days, the daily bag limit per person for abalone is five, of which no more than two can be greenlip.


For more information on the recreational take of abalone, please visit www.vic.gov.au/fisheries or see a copy of the Victorian Recreational Fishing Guide.


Information of any suspected illegal fishing activity can be reported via Fisheries Victoria’s 13 FISH (133 474) offence reporting line.