Fisher anger that tuna limits are still at risk

VRFish, the peak body representing Victorian recreational fishers, is calling on federal Assistant Agriculture and Water Resources Senator Anne Ruston to shelve ongoing tactics to lock the Victorian State Government into changing recreational fishing rules for our iconic Southern bluefin tuna.

VRFish Chairman Mr. Rob Loats said, “We are extremely annoyed the Commonwealth continues to ignore Agriculture Minister Jaala Pulford logical and pragmatic calls to first complete a recreational catch survey of SBT across Australia.”

“Victorian recreational fishers are prepared to go to any lengths to back up Minister Pulford to protect our valuable SBT fishery,” he said.

“Making premature and uninformed decisions puts our fantastic recreational SBT fishery into very dangerous territory which VRFish will not stand for under our watch,” said Mr Loats.

A Commonwealth-funded 12 month catch survey is already planned to begin in December this year, with results available in 2020.

“Victorian recreational fishers have a demonstrated track record of fishing sustainably, responsibly and rebuilding fish stocks,” he said.

“It’s again a reminder to all Victorians fishers the importance of having a strong and independent recreational fishing peak body protecting their interests,” he said.

According to an economic study in 2012, the SBT recreational fishery is estimated to contribute as much as $9 million to Portland’s economy.

Fishers can refer to VRFish’s SBT policy on its website and are encouraged to adopt best practice through following the tuna code of conduct.

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