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    Minister for Agricultural Industry Development and Fisheries
    The Honourable Mark Furner

    Protecting our Black jewfish stocks

    Minister for Agricultural Industry Development and Fisheries
    The Honourable Mark Furner

    Thursday, November 15, 2018

    Protecting our Black jewfish stocks

    Fisheries Queensland is seeking public feedback on a proposal to introduce urgent limits on the take of black jewfish to ensure the sustainability of stocks.

    Minister for Agricultural Industry Development and Fisheries Mark Furner said there was evidence of a rapidly-developing black market for the species involving both the commercial and recreational sectors.

    “Black jewfish swim bladders are fetching very high prices and some unscrupulous individuals are exploiting this,” Mr Furner said.

    “The Northern Territory has already introduced management changes, including swim bladder tagging, because of concerns for their black jewfish stocks.

    “The average commercial catch on the east coast has traditionally been around 16 tonnes, but since 2016 reported catch has tripled and it’s a similar story in the recreational sector.

    “We know that jewfish stocks can collapse very quickly if over fished and the East Coast Inshore working group and Sustainable Fisheries Expert Panel are recommending that we protect them now.”

    Fisheries Queensland is proposing to:

    • Introduce a 20t TACC on the east coast and 2t TACC for the Gulf of Carpentaria based on long run commercial catch averages;
    • Reduce the recreational in-possession limit from two to one; and
    • Introduce a whole form requirement for all fishers.

    Feedback from fishers and members of the public is now being sought. You can submit feedback at www.fisheries.qld.gov.au by Thursday December 13.

    Fishers are reminded that it is illegal to sell fish unless you are a licenced commercial fisher or wholesaler.

    If you have any information about black-marketing of black jewfish report it to Fishwatch on 1800 017 116.

    Follow Fisheries Queensland on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram (@FisheriesQld).

    ENDS

    Media contact:  Ron Goodman  0427 781 920