The Amateur Fishermen’s Association of the NT (AFANT) has backed the regulation changes announced today by Fisheries Minister Willam Westra van Holthe. AFANT President Warren de With said today
“AFANT supports the Governments actions in addressing one of the most significant fisheries sustainability issues that we have faced in the NT.
“Protecting the golden snapper and jewfish stocks and making significant catch and effort reductions is essential if we are to address the challenges facing coastal reef fish in the NT and give these fish the chance to recover back to adequate stock levels.
“The science behind the changes shows all sectors need to take significant action to reduce catches and increase egg production of golden snapper and black jewfish. It is very clear that for golden snapper a 50% cut in catches is needed and AFANT supports the mix of measures announced to address this issue.
“The recreational fishing sector and AFANT prides itself in showing leadership in addressing sustainability problems or other issues when required and recreational anglers must be at the forefront in dealing with the coastal reef fish issue and changing fishing behaviour.
“ We have consulted widely on the proposals with both AFANT members and the broader recreational fishing community and we are confident that the overwhelming majority of anglers will support the changes as necessary to ensure a reef fishing future around major population centers.
“Taking the required actions now is essential to ensure that in the future we will be able to catch great fish like golden snapper and black jewfish and rebuild the important reef fish fishery around Darwin. ” Warren de With said.
Fisheries will provide advice on the new reef fish package and be available for AFANT members and the broader community to ask questions and get a better understanding of the changes at the AFANT AGM Sunday 8th March 2015 – 10:00 am Tracy Village Social & Sports Club 28 Tambling Tce, Lyons.
Attached is the link to the government changes http://www.nt.gov.au/d/Fisheries/
The Amateur Fishermen’s Association of the NT (AFANT) has today called on the government and the barramundi fishing industry to remove the barramundi nets from within our rivers across the Territory.
AFANT President Warren de With said today, “the evidence is clear; barra nets have no place in our river systems which has again been highlighted by the pictures from the East Alligator River that show dead crocodiles in commercial barramundi fishing nets.
“The removal of barramundi netting from river systems in the 1980’s was one of the key drivers to improving the sustainability of the barramundi stocks and the reduction of by-catch like crocodiles. Unfortunately there are still a small number of river systems where the closure lines are at complete odds with what is publicly acceptable.
“AFANT has real concerns regarding the closure line in the East Alligator River which allows barramundi netting to the very headwaters of the Cooper Creek and were planning to put this issue on the agenda at both the Barra MAC and if not successful through this process we aim to make it an election policy issue.
“The East Alligator River is on the edge of the world heritage listed Kakadu National Park and is a very popular recreational fishing area. We receive many complaints about the netting in this system.
“The other major concern with the continued netting in the East Alligator is with the impact on threatened shark species like species of sawfish, northern river shark and the spear tooth shark which are known to inhabit these waters.
“The industry and government must address the closure line in the East Alligator River and move it back to the mouth of the river system as a matter of priority as it will become an extremely negative issue for the barramundi fishery.” Warren de With said.
The Amateur Fishermen’s Association of the NT (AFANT) has congratulated the li-Anthawirriyarra Sea Rangers and the King Ash Bay Fishing Club on the great effort in cleaning up an abandoned crabber’s camp on the Dugong/Rutherford Creek in the McArthur River.
AFANT President Warren de With said today “It was great to see the different groups working together and making a real difference to the local environment.
AFANT was extremely pleased to be involved in bringing together the parties and helping out on the day in what can only be described as a positive partnership between the local rangers and local recreational fishers, both groups have a real passion for the environment of the area.
It was particularly important that it could be removed before a major cyclone impacted the area and the rubbish and waste material on the site was spread through the surrounding sensitive mangroves and would have been almost impossible to remove.”
Stan Allen from the li-Anthawirriyarra sea rangers commented “job well done, all went well and worked really well with the King Ash Bay Fishing Club volunteers, which was good”.
The abandoned crabbers’ camp was a real eyesore and it is disappointing that it was left in the derelict state with rubbish everywhere, particularly in a very special place like the McArthur River mouth.
Geoff Hulm from the King Ash Bay Fishing Club thanked the sea rangers for providing local knowledge, expertise, the vessels and man power and thanked AFANT for bringing the organisations together to address a problem that had been a concern to club members and other local residents.
“It was great to see the reward for effort on the day with everyone doing their bit in delivering an extremely stark and positive difference at the site.” Mr Hulm said.
AFANT would also like to acknowledge the support from the NT Seafood Council who were unable to participate in the clean-up at this time.