Sport

Second coral reef fin fish closure starts

CORAL reef fin fish will be off limits from Wednesday as the second of two annual closures that protect these fish during the spawning season begins.

Queensland Boating and Fisheries Patrol district manager Greg Bowness said the closed season starts immediately after midnight at the beginning of Wednesday and ended just before midnight at the end of November 23.

"The timing coincides with the new moon when key coral reef fish species aggregate to spawn," Mr Bowness said.

"The closures are in place from the tip of Cape York in the north, to Bundaberg in the south (the southern boundary is at latitude 24º50'S).

"The eastern boundary of the closure is the same as the eastern boundary of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park."

Fishers are not permitted to take and possess coral reef fin fish species during the closure period.

Coral reef fin fish include cods and groupers, emperors, parrotfishes, sweetlips, wrasses, coral trout, fusiliers, surgeonfishes, tropical snappers and seaperches.

A reef fish web guide is available online at www.fisheries.qld.gov.au to help fishers identify fish listed as coral reef fin fish."

Mr Bowness said QBFP officers would be out patrolling Queensland waters over the spawning season.

"Officers conduct regular patrols and those found doing the wrong thing are risking an on-the-spot fine of $440 and a maximum penalty of $110,000," he said.

If you suspect illegal fishing, whether seen in person or online, it can be reported to the Fishwatch hotline on 1800 017 116. 

Topics:  fishing great barrier reef outdoor-living outdoors