Bag and size limits are vital while out on the water
AS THE state school Christmas holidays start today, what better time to encourage kids to get out onto the water and enjoy a well-earned break with fishing fun.
It is also the perfect time to refresh our knowledge of Queensland coastal waters rules.
There are minimum size limits and also some maximum size limits as often the larger, more mature fish of a species are the breeding females and need to be left alone to continue on the reproduction of a species.
Size limits are not just a random number. There's much calculation over time based on biological research into each species' reproductive cycles.
How to measure:
Measuring the bag limit is as simple as counting the number of legal-sized fish you have caught and wish to take home - there is no excuse for keeping in excess of the legal limit and anglers caught doing this are simply greedy.
To measure the legal size (length) of a fish, a ruler is a must, as guessing is just risky.
The fish needs to be measured from the tip of their snout to the end of their tail (not the inside of the concaved tail but the longest most point).
With crabs, the measurement is across the carapace, from the widest tip on the left to the widest point on the right.
If you unintentionally take a fish that is not the legal size or is unwanted, return it to the water immediately, taking as much care as possible to avoid causing injury to the fish.
If you find it impossible to remember all legal limits, invest in a Guide to Species for your state.
The most common species and their size/bag regulations are:
Yellowfin and pikey bream:
Bag limit of 30 in total of pikey, yellowfin bream and tarwhine. Size: 25cm minimum.
Snapper: Bag limit: 4 with no more than 1 over 70 cm. Size: 35cm minimum..
Trumpeter (winter) whiting: Bag limit: 50. No size limit.
Sand, goldline and northern whiting: Combined limit of 30 in total of all three species. Size limit: 23cm minimum.
Mud/dusky flathead: Bag limit: 5. Size limit 40cm minimum. 75cm maximum.
Sand and bartailed flathead: Bag limit 5 in total of all flathead (excluding dusky flathead). Size limit: 30cm minimum.
Mud crabs: Bag limit 10. Size: 15cm minimum (males).
Sand crabs: No bag limit. Size limit: 11.5cm minimum (males).
Mangrove jack: Bag limit 5. Size limit: 35cm minimum.
Mulloway/Jew: Bag limit 2. Size limit 75cm minimum.
Tailor: Bag limit 20. Size limit 35cm minimum.