Fish 'could disappear' in 50 years

http://www.news.com.au/story/0,23599,20693408-2,00.html

"THE world's fish and seafood could disappear by 2048 as overfishing and pollution destroy ocean ecosystems at an accelerating pace, US and Canadian researchers reported today."

Please take the blowies first.


Adam Gallash's picture

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50 years

Fri, 2006-11-03 09:05

Scary thoughts indeed!

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jay_burgess's picture

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Yeah heard that on the

Fri, 2006-11-03 10:17

Yeah heard that on the radio. Notice they said global fish stocks though... couldn't see australian fish stocks dissapearing in 50 years though.
They didn't mention what species though, and I seriously doubt all recreational fish species will be gone by then. For example, commercial netting in the rivers is banned in the pilbara & 90% of people who target them catch and release. Their numbers have been on the increase ever since netting was banned.

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Jay Burgess

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Study

Fri, 2006-11-03 11:40

Just saw the study in the news, mmmmm, very interesting indeed. Wonder what impact this study will have in recreational and professional fisheries management decisions from now on.

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Ewan's picture

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50 years ay??

Fri, 2006-11-03 13:12

Hmmm - that number gets thrown around in most of the climate/enviro/economic/energy guesstimates that we have been hearing about lately... (good on you Al Gore - that film seems to have gee'd everyone up!! including our 'government' - though im not gonna start on them!!).

If the models that the media report are correct, in 50 years:
a) we will be in a Depression greater than the Great Depression
b) have no oil with which to power our twin 125's
c) have no money to buy and maintain our sailboats, due to extreme energy costs as well as food costs due to drought etc
d) be no fish there anyway
e) in WA - have eutrophied, stagnant, saline river systems
f) have wave and tide ravaged coastlines due to sea level rise - eroding our boat ramps and destroying coastal infrastructure
g) have bleached coral reefs.

hmmm, sounds rather depressing!! Of course we have to take into account that the media tends to work things up. But then again, there IS a scientific consensus on alot of these issues...its not a case of IF they will happen, but when and to what extent.

They used to scare us by saying that polar ice caps would start melting in 50 years and sea level rise would become a problem in 50-100. But their models seem to be have been wrong - many glaciers have all but melted, Antarctic ice shelves are cleaving off in huge chunks when they never have before, Arctic ice sheets are melting faster than ever before (Polar Bears are in dire straits now, EXPECTED, to be more or less extinct in the wild within a generation due to sea ice loss). The models seem to be 50 years wrong - in the wrong direction!!

These predictive models rely on so many different factors which we 'understand' only in relatively very broad terms...they can predict things that will happen, but the specifics of when and to what extent are very fine scale things within the models. For example, ice shelf movement occurs over hundreds of thousands to millions of years, so to be able to predict movements within +/- 50 is pretty 'arrogant' - but its the best they can do.

Politicians are generally economists, lawyers, teachers...they simply dont have the background to understand all of these factors, potential for error etc, and neither do the general public (but its not our fault!!) - how much biology/ecology/environment understanding is taught in High Schools? Its almost that if you dont choose to do TEE Biology, then you dont get taught. To me this makes no sense - after all, these subjects are teaching the very fabric of life on Earth!! Since we live in a democracy of sorts, decisions on fisheries management, and all the rest of the big questions that are looming about our future depend on the collective understanding of the population. Meanwhile scientists carry on warning and warning and warning and predicting, with different numbers, dates years etc coming out from different studies (this is the nature and strength of science) - which end up confusing people into thinking it is all just doomsdaying by people who want to be in the news. And God help us if we rely on the Australian media to educate!!

Im going to branch off here - but keep the point that things are under threat - we should act to reduce that threat as much as possible.

...And God help us if we rely on the Australian media to educate!!...
Frank Prokop et al almost always gets more coverage in the West than the conservationists do - 'We support Sanctuary Zones, but its not based on science' is RecFishWest's cry... 'Theres no scientific evidence that they work' they tell us. Even though this is simply not true, it gets reported and believed. You dont need science to tell you that if you ban fishing and other destructive activities in an area, then that area will have more fish (or anything else - its all important) than places where you can fish/extract - derrr. But if you do want the science, there are hundreds of published, peer-reviewed reports that state it. As for the 'lack of science' claim - WA is bloody enormous, yet has a very small population and economic budget - to survey the entire marine area of this state is next to impossible - science in the water is very expensive. (Though alot of work has started up lately). So - if we dont know what is down there, and how it fits into the big picture - then should we carry on exploiting it until we either
a) cant anymore because there is nothing left
b) get around to doing the science to find out whats going on and decide which bits to protect?

That is absolutely ridiculous. We all know how much fewer fish are around these days compared to our grandpappy's - for some reason we just accept that as the way things work. You always hear people saying "I used to catch hundreds of XXXX off that lump/jetty/beach/river, but now theres bugger all" - again, derrrr. I wonder where they went - derrr.

Here is our saviour - THE PRECAUTIONARY PRINCIPLE - ever heard of it Frank et al? Basically If you dont know what you are doing, dont do it until you do.
Dont prevent (lobby against) the establishment of sanctuary areas because the science isnt robust - of course we want the science but it just wont happen until someone funds it! The best way we have is to establish these areas, which then focus the science and effort on them, and then work it out. If it turns out that the sanctuary zone was too big - then you have lost nothing but a few bag limits, and you have gained alot. Go fishing on the edges of the sanctuary zone and you will catch the overflow (yes this has been scientifically proven all around the world).

We as recfishers do have some capacity to influence management decisions by not putting the "Wake up Geoff" "I Fish and I Vote" etc stickers on our cars, and not complaining about what are in fact very small protected areas, in the context of the whole coast - and instead recognise the value and fragility of the ocean we all love. It used to be our right to catch as much as we wanted - when we fished with spears and rocks. Now we have military technology to help us and make it nearly effortless to catch fish (wake up, walk to the car, drive to the ramp, step into the boat, drop a line directly on the school your buddy gave you the GPS spot for, bag out and drive on home) that right is now forfeit - now we have the responsibility to look after it for our own use, our future generations, and for the maintenance of biodiversity for as long as the sun still burns.

I've ranted enough!! Tis all in good fun. But I will state for the record that, as a life long and passionate Western Australian angler, RecFishWest does NOT represent me.

If the fishery depletion over the last 50 years is anything to go by - then you bloody betcha it will collapse.

Ewan

Adam Gallash's picture

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Nice Ewan

Fri, 2006-11-03 17:06

Great comment Ewan, certainly agree on a few points you have raised. I won't post my thoughts yet due to being the forums moderator and will give others an opportunity to voice their opinion, but good on you for saying what you thought needed to be said.

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Thought that was a flywest

Fri, 2006-11-03 17:34

Thought that was a flywest post there for a second :P

Anyway, like Adam, I agree with most of the points you've made. Thanks for posting that Ewan, was a good read.

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Jay Burgess

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Marine Conservation...

Fri, 2006-11-03 18:27

Thanks Adam, and also to Shizz for putting it up in the first place - tis a pretty important topic for everyone who fishes, and so everyone who posts on this great website. No doubt there will be a diversity of opinion on this one!! Although of course I hope everyone agrees with me!!

I hope people get into it and think about it, from whatever side of the various fences they might be on.

I also hope that people dont get out the Greenie brush to paint me and like-minded people with. The times of dreadlocked hippies being the only people thinking and talking about these issues is hopefully past! Though I should say I have absolute respect for hippies, they started the environmental movement which is becoming more and mainstream - as it should be! The environment keeps us alive after all. It seems to be all too easy for people on the political right to paint with that hippie brush and then discount whatever that person/group was saying. It is now becoming more and more apparent that conservation-thinking is not just about saving the trees because they are like, so beautiful man, but because they keep the world breathing, etc. And the situation is becoming dire. Maybe not quite just yet, but not far away. Only 50 years if they are right!

Here it is:

I am sick and tired of the blatant misrepresentation that Frank Prokop/RecFishWest give to the various debates on these issues. Many many recfishers dont catch their bag limits when they could, many strongly agree with large sanctuary zone placements in places like Rotto, etc etc - yet RecFishWest and their opinions get all the attention, saying they agree with SZ's and conservation initiatives in one breath and then opposing them with the next. And the arguments that there is no science to back up SZ success is simply false, point blank untrue. It is either a lie on their part, or they dont know what they are talking about, and therefore shouldnt talk about it. There is an ever-increasing mountain of scientific evidence. And the longer that SZs are in place, the more evidence there is.

"Why should fisherman be banned from this place when divers can anchor?" is another common arguement they put out to muddy the debate. On the surface it is a good point, and anchoring should also be addressed in management plans, by banning or supplying moorings - I agree entirely. But when you weigh up the impact of anchoring against the impact of cyclones on coral reefs for example, it is next to negligible (within reason of course - if there are a hundred boats anchoring in the same spot there will be much destruction). Anchoring certainly has an impact - check out GoogleEarth and zoom into the mooring areas aroung Rockingham - you can see the 'scars' in the seagrass from anchor/mooring chains swinging and clearing holes in the seagrass, clear as day and very numerous. So if RecFishWest really care about the issue, why dont they say "OK, good idea, thats a good place for a SZ - but you should also stop anchoring" instead of "But they are allowed to anchor, so we should be allowed to fish".

Quite clearly their arguement is not "We support the SZ, but you are not doing it right" - it is "We dont want an SZ here because we want to fish it, and will pull up any arguements to support our stance"

It sucks when one politically savvy group can influence opinion so much.

The other one is "If you want that to be an SZ because of the important benthic habitat, then we should be allowed to fish for pelagics over it" oh man. Its like saying you should be allowed to shoot the birds that fly over national parks. SZs are there to provide sanctuary for everything. OK maybe the pelagics move through seasonally or whatever, but the establishment of one place where they cant be caught just has the effect of reducing pressure on them, just that little bit. Why do we feel like the ocean is ours to do what we want? Yet on land, you are not allowed to go on peoples property, you cant go here, you cant go there, you cant do this, you cant do that. Just because you cant put fences on the sea doesnt mean they shouldnt be there. If we (the general population) are not able to impose restrictions on ourselves, then, for the sake of the fish/habitat it needs to be done by someone else. I remember a huge hoo-haa over the SZs in the Ningaloo marine park. 30% of it is protected no-take areas, which is worlds-best practice. It doesnt restrict the fishing there one iota - if you cant go to the Ningaloo reef and not catch fish because of the SZs, you are plain lazy or not a very good fisherman. The same applies everywhere else. Ningaloo is a good model. Except now they are building a blooming boat ramp island in as SZ at Monk Head - um, guys? Dont you think that might have a bit of an impact?

The current example is the proposed Capes marine park - again there is/was a big opposition to the ~10% no take areas (I think its about 10%). The West Australian newspaper was running the line of "All this area will be closed to fishing" instead of "Here is the proposal, what do you think" - and this newspaper is how pretty much everyone gets infomation in this state. If I recall, Frank Prokop, opposing the SZs placement on the old no-science basis, got more lines in the newspaper stories than anyone else. Why?
big deal, 10% - and in many the no-take areas, you can still fish from shore. Where, pray tell, is the problem?

If RecFishWest really do support marine conservation, lets hear their solutions, not their opposition to it!
And conservation-minded fishers, lets hear your thoughts too - tell the world that when RecFishWest speak out on these things, they dont represent you! Dont let them take the power.

(bzzzzzzz) I can hear the hornets a-buzzing!
Sorry - I just realised I might have taken this thread a bit off topic...let me know or shift it if you like Adam...

Cheers, peace out dudes!

Ewan

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Loved the birds in the national park analogy Ewan

Sun, 2006-11-05 16:21

You have made some very clear points in what (in my opinion) has become a somewhat cloudy debate, where both sides seemingly try to use science to beffuddle the common angler (yes both sides). Bethnic this and Demersal that, the average joe blow (stress "average")I am sure turns off at that point and thinks they can't possibly add value to the debate, so it is left to a few to argue the case for and against. (Sound familiar?)

This is where I think Ewan's last two posts have added significant value. He has used clear and unmuddied language that articulates with passion the current situation and his view of the politics around it.

I beleve that Recfishwest are probably just a mouthpice articulating what it is that their constituents are most vocal in saying (that's their job after all). Perhaps the "greener" (for want of a better term) side of the recreational fishing lobby need to get more vocal and recruit more members to change the majority voice of recfishwest. Lobbyists are paid to lobby on behalf of their representative group, based on a majority opinion. This is where the change needs to come from in my view. You have all heard of the "Silent Majority", well I think it may apply in this case. Whilst no-one wants to lose the ability to go fishing today, there needs to be some kind of paradigm shift in the minds of the recreational angling public for these people to accept the necessary trade-offs and proactive conservation decisions that need to be made "today", in order to save our fishing in the future.

Ewan's use of analogies makes perfect sense to me and I am certainly convinced that we all need to think (or should I say "act") more and more about our fishing future and if we don;t agree with something we need to feel comfortable in saying so. Perhaps then that voice may grow a little louder and more confident and start to reach the ears of the lobbyists and politicians before its too late.

Great thread, love to hear others points of view, without it turning into a slanging match. I think Ewan made some really good points that deserve further discussion.

How can we (fishwrecked) as a fishing community make a difference? and what sort of "difference" is it that we want to make?

Thanks Ewan, top stuff mate.

Cheers

Andy Mac

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Andy Mac (Fishwrecked Reeltime Editor & Forum Moderator)

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Marine Protected Areas and Recfishwest Policies.

Mon, 2006-11-06 09:13

Marine Protected Areas and Recfishwest Policies.

Lots of very good issues raised in this post.

If people rely on what they hear and read and see in the media to form their opinion of an organisation's approach, then they will be misled by the media's focus on the controversial side of most things, and media's failure to inform of the great bulk of the non controversial stuff where there is agreement on many points. That applies to coverage of most things you see in the media.

Specifically, the implication that groups are (or should be) either for or against Marine Protected Areas and sanctuary zones is just simplistic and is really missing the point - it isn't that simple.

Do people want "islands of jewels surrounded by seas of deserts?" Because that's what MPAs could provide in heavy usage areas without proper Fisheries Management which is also critical - see the original report which warned of overfishing and pollution and destruction of habitat in the overseas areas which were the subject of the report..

There are plenty of example where large changes are needed to Fisheries Management in WA, and are being proposed (against opposition from some sources.....).

Recfishwest's policies and statements have been mentioned. There are public statements of the RFW policy on Marine Protected Areas on the RFW website. See "Policy on Marine Reservation and No Take Zones" http://www.recfishwest.org.au/PolicyMarineReservations.htm and various MPA submissions on http://www.recfishwest.org.au/Submissions.htm

Recfishwest has been working with WA Government and Dept Environment and Conservation (CALM) to learn from the experiences of recent years and improve the processes on both sides, so that both conservation objectives and resaonable recreational fishing aspirations can be met.

For example, I have just (flight arrived back 10:50pm last night Sunday) come back from a 2 day seminar on Marine Protected Areas run by Recfish Australia in Brisbane. Recfish Australia and Recfishwest are two separate organisations but they are linked.

That was attended by over 80 people from all around Australia. The program and the list of speakers are on the Recfish Australia website at http://www.recfish.com.au/pdf/MPA%20Seminar%20program%20-%20Draft%20for%20release.pdf

There was lots of info provided at that seminar, and lots came out of the discussions. All proceedings and presentations will be put onto the Recfish Australia website as it is collated, starting with the presentations. All States have very different MPA systems, and some are much more advanced than others.

Recfish Australia Recfishing Research - National Seminar On Marine Protected Areas:- Objectives:-

1. Understanding of the current and projected future status of MPAs (state and commonwealth)

2. To define engagement and develop processes and guidelines for adequate and early engagement of the recreational sector in the MPA debate.

3. To identify the effects (especially social and economic)of MPAs on recreational fishers and fisheries, and develop alternative access arrangements in lieu of "lockouts"

4. To identify and articulate the gaps in knowledge and understanding of recreational fishing activity in MPAs and develop strategies and programs for Research, Development & Extension (R, D & E) to address them.

5. To identify and develop the best tools and methods for recreational fishers to use in presenting their case for the rational establishment and review of MPAs
======

One of the topics covered in some detail was how to inform and involve recreational anglers about and in Marine Protected Area issues.

The sad fact is that most recreational anglers are not interested in getting informed and involved in things such as Fisheries Management and Marine Protected areas, and one challenge is how to get more of them involved and to present the information in several ways so that people can chose the amount of detail they want to absorb. Not surprisingly, lots more $$$$ and people (volunteers or employed) are required.

There will be LOTS more on all this........ When I and others have some time to do it......

I have access to a lot of info on MPAs - and I'm pushing for that to be published so it can be assessed and used.

Today I will try to get to a Marine Science Seminar see http://www.westernangler.com.au/forum/Marine_Science_Seminar_6_November/m_119917/tm.htm and am then heading to Jurien Bay for a meeting of the Jurien Bay Marine Park Community Advisory Committee on Tuesday - I am a member of that Committee - no weblink yet - DEC haven't yet put anything out to the public on this - and that's an agenda item.
=========
Science. See the comments in "The Role of Science in Marine Park Planning" at http://www.westernangler.com.au/forum/m_45462/mpage_1/key_Science/tm.htm#45462

TerryF
=====

Beavering away in the background......

Recreational anglers want sustainable fishing and good fishing experiences and a FAIR GO!.

Informed Recreational anglers aren't opposed to Marine Parks.

Informed Recreational anglers aren't opposed to sanctuary zones in the right places for the right reasons.

Informed Recreational anglers want to protect nursery areas, spawning fish stocks and spawning fish aggregations, but these don't need total closures all year long. Example:- Cockburn Sound Pink Snapper seasonal spawning closures championed by concerned recreational anglers.

Recreational anglers want to protect the environment, but locking up large areas is not the only way to protect the environment.

Informed conservationists would talk about the outcomes they want, and not just keep promoting one of the methods which might achieve them and ignore all the other methods........

Ewan's picture

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Fish Management = good for everyone

Mon, 2006-11-06 12:01

Thanks Andy, and Terry too,

I think this is one of those arguments when everyone is actually on the same side, arguing for the same thing, but methodologies and politics get in the way of the best outcomes or directions to go with it. I am sure that all recfishers recognise the fishery depletion over the years, and more and more focus is being put on the state of the environment in general so that we all understand more that the way things have always been (over-exploitation etc) cant continue.

I am positive that the silent majority that Andy talked about is real - no fisherperson I know agrees with the opposition to no-take areas that our 'representative' body seems to promote. Terry makes the good point that the media focuses on controversy when reporting these things - The West Australian is so bad for this - in my opinion the whole bloody paper is an opinion piece. However the gems below i pulled off the recfishwest website: http://www.recfishwest.org.au/MediaStateRottnest.htm

"Recfishwest today accused Premier Alan Carpenter of abandoning recreational fishers and breaking an explicit promise of Premier Gallop and the Labor party"

""The election promise of the Labor party is absolutely crystal clear" Mr Prokop said. "It says the Labor party will "Reaffirm its commitment not to support bans on fishing at Rottnest Island."

"Mr Carpenter seems able to blithely accept the biased and unsubstantiated options from the Rottnest Island Authority and wannabe commentators like Hugh Edwards." Mr Prokop said."

"The Premier must make the Rottnest Island Authority work with recreational fishers and not vilify them as has been done"

Now, the language used here and the points Frank Prokop make betray the whole argument. Fishery and environmental management is not 'betrayal' of recfishers, they are not being 'vilified'. Why oh why cant we accept the fact that recfishing, particularly in the metro area is, if not the number one factor contributing to fish stock depletion, then number two (behind commercial). Others being perhaps spearfishing and habitat loss (especially Cockburn Sound). We have terms like "fished out" in our fishing vocabulary - we all know that it happens. We all complain about it. We all look for new, unfished areas to get to. As access improves to these areas, they get "fished out" and it continues. We buy bigger boats, we get 4WDs to get off the beaten track - not just because its nicer there, but because there are more fish.

RECREATIONAL FISHING HAS A REAL AND LARGE IMPACT ON FISH NUMBERS. WE ARE TO BLAME, FAIRLY AND SQUARELY, FOR A LARGE CHUNK OF THE PROBLEM. IN MANY AREAS, WHERE COMMERCIAL FISHING DOES NOT OCCUR, OR INDUSTRY IS NOT ACTIVE, WE ARE TOTALLY TO BLAME.

We dont have to feel guilty about it, it is not the fault of you and me personally, we just have to realise it and come to terms with the fact that we have to close some areas, either sometimes or all the time. Like Terry said, we are getting better at it - Cockburn Sound and Shark Bay closures are a great example. There is a shift in mentality happening which is great. But the attitudes and statements made by RecFishWest dont encourage it, they oppose and hinder it.

I would be a fool to say that the way marine conservation is put in place here, and the basis upon which decisions are made about where to do it and how, are perfect. You would be hard pressed to find examples from any government of any program in any portfolio that is.
Way more science is needed, way more research about the best way to implement conservation is needed. But we only have what we have, and it points to the success of no-take areas in other places globally and in Australia. Alot of research on the Great Barrier Reef points to it, straight up and clearly. From what I gather about what you do Terry - surely you would have access to this research? Surely it would have been talked about at the convention? If not, it has been avoided.

Opponents to no-take areas or their location or whatever keep using words like "large areas closed to fishing". So 10-30% is a large area? You can fish ANYWHERE in the Perth metro area except the Marmion Marine Park, between Trigg and Hillarys and a couple mile offshore. If the proposed no-take areas at Rotto were accepted you could fish ANYWHERE except (I cant remember exactly) is it 3 or 4 areas? How selfish are you to demand that all of it be open? Old timers used to catch dhufish and crays off the shore. Recfishers over the years have made that very unlikely if not impossible today. And if you believe that RecFishWest represent 600,000 WA recfishers - apparently we dont want our children to be able to catch anything off Rotto in the future. With a growing population and increased fishing effort - its certainly not going to get better!

I dont know the exact stats, but i could be tempted to wager that the total amount of WA coastal waters that are closed to fishing due to cnservation no-take areas would be 1-2%, if that. So THIS is a "large area"? Please dont take personal offence - I am not saying that you are selfish people, but that argument certainly is.

Could you imagine anywhere else in the world where you could have a capital city of nearly 2 million people, that has a gem of an island just offshore, easily accessible, where you could go snorkelling and see big fish, in no-take areas? Wow, that would be brilliant. FAR more people go to Rotto and do non-extractive activities. Imposing no-take areas would not stop anyone who currently goes there to fish to stop - you could still fish from the vast majority of the place!! And you would catch more and bigger fish - this has been PROVEN (yeah yeah OK i know that science never PROVES anything but you know what I mean). Recfishers are not being vilified - tell me, do you think snorkelling, diving or sailing and swimming are responsible for a decline in fisheries? It is simply an intelligent realisation that fishing, as the major extractive activity in the area, should be the activity that is most impacted by any conservation measures. It is not punishment, it is not betrayal, it is best-practice management, as far as we know at this point in time. Rottnest could be an example to the world of how to protect a brilliant natural asset for everyone to enjoy. Instead it remains just another depleted fishing hole.

RecFishWest complain that (for example) no-take areas off Rotto penalise recfishers, of which they say there are 600,000 in WA, for everyones problem. I wonder exactly how many people would use said areas exactly? maybe 100 different boats over a year (correct me - its just a guess to make a point)? so thats about 500 people, at the most? And i expect many of those would not complain if they were set as no-take areas. Who does RecFishWest represent in their arguments in this example?

Andy wrote about lobbyists etc putting the points of their constituents across. RecFishWest and Frank Prokop are paid financial entities in this argument, able to work full-time on it - he can ring up the West Australian and give them a story, all I cant do is write to Letters to the Editor. Who pays them? (a real question - i dont know but would like to, and it should be public) I've had a quick squiz at the website but couldnt find out. I think membership is free? So who pays them? Historically, opponents to conservation measures in any field have far more direct financial benefits compared with the conservationists. Fishing tackle shops complain about no-take areas, saying it would hurt their business, charter operators probably often dont use those areas but you could bet your house that they would oppose if they did. In the context of what is to be lost to everyone - fishers and non-fishers - by not conserving, a small percentage of financial loss (if in fact there would be, which i doubt) by a minority is nothing. I see that RecFishWest is sponsored by Healthway, LotteryWest etc. I would hope that it is not supported by anyone with a vested financial interest in the debate. If it is, it should be stated publicly.

From TerryF's thread above:
"Recreational anglers want to protect the environment, but locking up large areas is not the only way to protect the environment."
- I agree. But it is one that works and is proven to work. Lets get some others going too!

"Informed conservationists would talk about the outcomes they want, and not just keep promoting one of the methods which might achieve them and ignore all the other methods"
- I agree, a more wholistic approach and more emphasis on education is needed - instead of lobbying the government in opposition to the only PROVEN method they currently have at their disposal, lobby them to research and implement others.

And unless RecFishWest is a scientific body - they have no right to mislead the public about the scientific merits of no-take areas. "biased and unsubstantiated" (from the quote of Frank Prokop listed above) are two words that come to my mind.

TerryF, i realise that RecFishWest and recfishers in general want sustainable fishing for the future - of course we do. But we need a mentality shift as Andy talks about - we cant continue to expect that they way fishing is and always has been, can be sustainable. Dont you see how bag limits keep getting lower, restrictions on fishing keep getting more limiting? This is not anti-fisherman, it is not punitive - it is a gradual realisation that we have been and still do catch too much.

Bag limit reductions, closures etc come about after a big scientific effort occurs (studying snapper spawning behaviour etc), which tells us that we need to do these things. It is a very rare thing indeed, in this context, where with more science comes less restrictions. More science almost invariably tells us that we need more restrictions to balance out the technological advantage we have over the fish. Filling freezers is simply not sustainable, not matter how you look at it.
At the moment, we simply dont know the marine ecology of WA - the what/where/when of spawning, behaviours, distributions, etc etc. Until we do, prudence is the wisest option. Widely known as The Precautionary Principle.

It baffles me, I just cant get my head around opposition, or the placement of political obstacles in this debate. Has the fishing in the state gotten better or worse over the years, with the mentality that we have? I dont need to answer that. OK OK, the old point that not enough research has been done. But it has in other places around the world, and in the meantime it really is a very small price to pay - a few SMALL (they are NOT large when placed in context - that is misleading and wrong) no-take areas - when they ensure that at least some little bits are protected, untouched for the future.

ah geez I meant to keep it short, sorry for another diatribe I'll fight the urge next time. - I just previewed this post - oops, apologies again I will try and be more concise next time. I guess there is alot to be debated. Thank goodness for websites etc like this one that allow free, easy, unbiased communication!

TerryF - I look forward to researching the links you have put in your post and getting into some details too...i guess i have just been putting in my opinion here with little backing, but thankyou for putting some links in for your points. If I am going to blab on so much i guess i should research it and put links etc in too...sorry bout that!

Cheers,
Ewan

Posts: 489

Date Joined: 11/08/05

Marine Protected Areas and Fisheries Management

Mon, 2006-11-06 14:40

Ewan

Lots more good points for discussion, but I simply don't have the time to respond to them today. Just back from that Marine Science Seminar, having a bite and now I'm heading to Jurien Bay for a meeting of the Jurien Bay Marine Park Community Advisory Committee tomorrow.

Some links on the Rottnest proposals referred to in that RFW media release are on http://www.westernangler.com.au/forum/Time_to_act_on_Rottnest%21%21/m_106520/tm.htm and my personal submission is at http://www.westernangler.com.au/forum/forceddownload.asp?file=0;106917 (a pdf file).

I would not have any difficulty writing a book on what is wrong with those Rottnest proposals and their development, and the biased and misleading publications and public consultation, and showing that those activities were classic examples of how not to do things.

Gotta go....

TerryF
=====

Beavering away in the background......

SHizz's picture

Posts: 1556

Date Joined: 07/08/05

is there anyway to donate to

Mon, 2006-11-06 20:22

is there anyway to donate to recfishwest or similar cause?

Maverick's picture

Posts: 1215

Date Joined: 06/06/06

Best way

Mon, 2006-11-06 22:31

Best way to help Recfishwest would be to become a member , best $20 you could spend on fishin'.

JMHO

JMHO

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 OFW member 088 

 Sponsored by no one and I work for myself so my comments are my own.

Ewan's picture

Posts: 271

Date Joined: 15/05/06

Education

Tue, 2006-11-07 10:07

I've heard a rumour of an idea to make a documentary about local fishing back in the old days, interviewing oldtimers and showing old pics/footage of how it used to be...i reckon that would be one of the most useful tools to educate people on the impacts that we have had. I'll try to check it out and let yous know if we can do something to help...if you are interested...

I used to work in a fish shop owned by the original fishing family in Bunbury, the old fella that worked there was one of the brothers that started commercial fishing like 60 years ago...the stories he told me just blew me away...boatloads of dhuies and snapper taken from Koombana bay, apparently there was a grey nurse congregation there too, just off where the power station is - he reckoned one night they got 35!! just amazing stories, heartbreaking too. Really inspired me to think about what i do, as a fisherman.

I would join RecFishWest if i thought i could be represented, if it could make a difference to their policies...I've had a bit of a chat with Frank et al once before about all this stuff, I swear i wasnt arguing or getting cranky about it, just tried to have a reasoned discussion/debate, and got nothing back. They point blank refused the merits of no-take areas and that style of management, because it 'reduces the amenity' to recfisherman. I was disgusted with their attitude and arguments - turned me right off. I am usually a very mild-mannered man, but i had to just walk away and blow up to myself when confronted with that - ive rarely felt so angry in my life. They continued to claim there was no science etc etc, which is plain wrong. As I've said, I think that is either a public lie, or ignorance. All the words written in policy statements (they claim to support no-take zones, if this and that criteria are met etc) mean nothing if they are just a political bluff.

Im gonna blow a gasket if i keep thinking about this - i cant understand any opposition to any conservation measure in this state, when there has been more or less nothing until the last 10 years or so. I think you are spot on Luke, and Andy - what can we actually do to push our case in this debate? Joining recfishwest wont do a thing for real marine conservation, they have a stated aim to protect the interests of fisherman, which is not compatible with conservation. Historically, they oppose pretty much anything that affects our recfishing - which I guess is fair enough - that is what they are there for. If you are interested in progressing marine conservation in this state i would suggest that supporting a lobby group that represents the extractive activity that contributes to the problem isnt the way to go - though i cant offer a real alternative except maybe the Marine Conservation Society or something...Neither will voting for a particular party...its up to us!! This website gives us a great opportunity to spread ideas and collate our thoughts. I reckon we can come up with something, print up some t-shirts, flyers or something...anyone wanna work something out with me?

Ewan

Posts: 22

Date Joined: 04/05/06

I find it hard to agree with

Tue, 2006-11-07 21:07

I find it hard to agree with anything you offer Ewan- your anti-RFW / FP rant is off putting considering MPA's are only a fraction of the issues RFW deals with.

I applaude their stance on marine parks among the many other issues and my membership is money well spent.

Ewan's picture

Posts: 271

Date Joined: 15/05/06

No problem scaly

Wed, 2006-11-08 09:30

No problem Scaly, that is your right, and I am sure many others agree with you.

But you should not try to degrade what someone else says as a 'rant' just because it is opposed to your view. Others on this site, including TerryF, think that good points have been made which merit further discussion. You could add value to the thread, or you could just try to run down other post-ers. Water off a duck's back my friend. I am not talking about the other issues that RecFishWest deal with, I am talking about this one. It has the capacity to affect not only us, but future generations of people, and the long-term sustainance of fishing in WA.

RecFishWest are an important part of this debate and I should clear up that I am not anti-RecFishWest in total. Their arguments have added much value to the debate - especially in highlighting the 'failings' of the process in terms of public education and communication, and the lack of scientific effort as a whole, and in the context of marine conservation planning. Even the Conservation Council has picked up on it, and call for more science when planning marine parks etc.
They also do do great research of their own, especially for example the tagging studies on released fish survival, participation in the sambo tagging stuff, etc, etc.

I just hate that they are able to have such political power - implying they represent 600,000 western australians, when they dont. I would like to know exactly how many MEMBERS of RecFishWest there are - these are the only figures that should be quoted when talking about representation. Otherwise it is MISrepresentation. I also hate that they can come out and publicly discount the scientific merit of no-take zones, when they are globally recognised as a scientifically justifiable way to ensure the maintenance of biodiversity for the future, and at present, with the accepted lack of research, are the best and only tool we have. Unfortunately for everyone, the general public does not necessarily have access or the background to access this science, and rely on the statements put in the media by RecFishWest, etc.

Right on Luke, lets do it.
I dont have enough time today, but I'll be back with a few references and figures to further clear some mud.

Ewan

Posts: 489

Date Joined: 11/08/05

Recfishwest and Marine Conservation

Wed, 2006-11-08 12:23

Ewan's recent post has made a strong statement about Recfishwest - "Historically, they oppose pretty much anything that affects our recfishing...."

That is a very sweeping statement, and does not fit with what I know about Recfishwest's policies and actions.

I don't have any problem with people expressing their opinions, but most other people would hope that those opinions expressed are based on the facts, particularly when some opinions are presented as though they are facts.

Recfishwest in fact does support some of the recent sanctuary zone proposals - see their submissions on the Shoalwater Islands Marine Park Draft Management Plan 2006 http://www.recfishwest.org.au/SubShoalwaterOct2006.htm and the proposed Dampier Archipelago Marine Park and Cape Preston Marine Management Area http://www.recfishwest.org.au/SubDampierMarManArea.htm and there's more.....

I have PM'd Ewan with my phone and email contact details and an offer to discuss any of his post.

Anyway here are a lot of existing links which show that RFW doesn't just oppose, even in MPAs and conservation, but is proactive and is doing lots of things for the benefit of conservation and recreational fishing in many areas.

These links are previous discussions on some of these same RFW related topics. Some of these answer particular points raised in earlier posts in this thread, but I'm not going to repost the same stuff yet again. I've got heaps more links, and heaps of important things to do......

Some of the comments seem to remember and criticise very selected things where someone doesn't agree 100% with what has been done or how it was done, regardless of how many other positive things have been done - assuming those other things are known about.

Problems with that selective and demanding approach are discussed in "The pass mark is at 100%" http://www.westernangler.com.au/forum/m_98799/mpage_1/key_/tm.htm#98799

Recfish Australia Marine Protected Areas Seminar http://www.westernangler.com.au/forum/m_119915/mpage_1/key_/tm.htm#120854

Integrating Marine Reserves Science and Fisheries Management http://www.westernangler.com.au/forum/m_77489/mpage_1/key_/tm.htm#77489

The precautionary principle and the political process http://www.westernangler.com.au/forum/m_70728/mpage_1/key_/tm.htm#70728

Role of Science in Marine Park Planning. http://www.westernangler.com.au/forum/m_45462/mpage_1/key_/tm.htm#45462

Biodiversity Conservation Strategy Discussion Paper http://www.westernangler.com.au/forum/m_63196/mpage_1/key_/tm.htm#63196

Bioregional Marine Planning http://www.westernangler.com.au/forum/m_42253/mpage_1/key_/tm.htm#42253

Marine Protected Areas Research Seminar http://www.westernangler.com.au/forum/m_74982/mpage_1/key_/tm.htm#74982

Marine Park Management CALM or Fisheries http://www.westernangler.com.au/forum/m_49395/mpage_1/key_/tm.htm#49395

Recfishwest urges single marine resources portfolio http://www.westernangler.com.au/forum/m_88853/mpage_1/key_/tm.htm#88853

Logue brook dam and other access to SW drinking water http://www.westernangler.com.au/forum/m_105607/mpage_2/tm.htm#108558

Recfishwest Election Policy. http://www.westernangler.com.au/forum/m_39114/mpage_1/key_/tm.htm#39114

TerryF
=====

Beavering away in the background......

Posts: 22

Date Joined: 04/05/06

I wasn't trying to 'degrade'

Wed, 2006-11-08 13:24

I wasn't trying to 'degrade' or 'rundown' what you were saying. I'll leave that effort to you and your views of RFW on a single issue.

The scientific merit of MPA's within their current context of implementation is debatable and although you might hate the political influence they wield, I for one am grateful for it and wish for more influence rather than less.

Adam Gallash's picture

Posts: 15439

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Fish for the future

Thu, 2006-11-09 15:46

Whilst I like the idea I'm not ready to stand in the political fishing fray just yet thanks Luke. :) I have previously stated I didn't like the marine park proposal around Rotto, the area where the Chicken Run is located, the others are fine.

I think the concept of Marine Parks is going to be extremely important in the health of our fisheries in future. How they are managed and what areas are designated to be parks is what is a large concern to recreational anglers.

Recfishwest as the peak recreational body for Western Australian fishermen should be analysing and commenting on those decisions in my opinion. I don't really know enough about the subject compared to Ewan and Terry, but I think anything which brings positive attention to some of these sensitive issues is likely to benefit us all as recreational anglers.

Cheers,
Adam

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Site Admin - Just ask if you need assistance

Posts: 22

Date Joined: 04/05/06

And that is what RFW do- I

Thu, 2006-11-09 16:37

And that is what RFW do- I believe they have more knowledge on this subject than most of us...including Ewan.

I find your stance surprising Ewan- it seems as if you think that RFW and recfishers should just roll over and accept blanket closures in some areas that have no real benefit to biodiversity conservation (Although in this day and age, a 'perceived' benefit seems to be all that is required. Being 'seen-to-be-green' is just as good as the real thing in some peoples minds).

In regards to Rotto, alternative zoning plans were put forward but ignored by people digging in their heels. The ground rules for engagement have already been set it would seem, and not by recfishers. Vocalizing the dissatisfaction with the process is paramount to an equitable solution.

As for RFW and FP getting more press coverage than the conservation/preservationists...please

jay_burgess's picture

Posts: 4648

Date Joined: 18/08/05

"blanket closures in some

Thu, 2006-11-09 16:42

"blanket closures in some areas that have no real benefit to biodiversity conservation "

How would you know that it has no benefit to biodiversity and conservation?

-----------------
Jay Burgess

Posts: 22

Date Joined: 04/05/06

"How would you know that it

Thu, 2006-11-09 18:08

"How would you know that it has no benefit to biodiversity and conservation?"

How would you know that it has? ;)

Ewan's picture

Posts: 271

Date Joined: 15/05/06

Lets clear up some things

Thu, 2006-11-09 19:02

Dont get all defensive - I am not attacking RecFishWest across the board, based on this one issue. RecFishWest do many good things for us, educating fishers on best fish handling, specific research projects etc etc. Even on this marine parks issue i believe they do good things, as I said earlier. There are some failings in the park planning process. There is not enough science done. RecFishWest have brought many of these issues to attention. Politics get in the way. Industry gets in the way. It is not a simple process. Everyone feels ownership over the sea and no one wants to be prevented from accessing it.

I am not putting myself up there as the font of all knowledge on this issue. I have no doubt that RecFishWest, and in this thread in particular, Terry, have a much deeper understanding of the specifics of all of these processes. So they should - that is what they are there for and able to work full-time on. I already have a full-time job and have no internet access at home, I am researching and posting at lunchtime or after work. I am not going to go through RecFishWests submissions sanctuary zone by sanctuary zone. Perhaps I shouldnt have brought up specifics in the first place, I apologise for that - I am really talking about the general principles involved. I might also add that I have alot of respect for the level of involvement and passion that Terry and others have for this issue, and am thankful that people like them drive it.

- I am making the point for a change in ideology amongst recreational fisherpeople, and I am making the point that this change is already occurring, many fishers support and want more conservation intiatives to come out, including fishery closures in certain places and/or at certain times. And I am further making the point that this shift in ideology is not represented within RecFishWest's policies.
For example in this link:

http://www.recfishwest.org.au/PolicyMarineReservations.htm

and spread amongst other parts of the RecFishWest website is the policy that Recreational fishers are concerned over cumulative loss of access to fishing places, and that no-take conservation reserves should to be as small as necessary to adequately conserve whatever it is. Correct me if I am wrong Terry or Scaly. I'll also refer you back to my quotes of Frank Prokop talking about Rotto SZ above - in opposition to ANY, not based on science, but based on a political promise. I'll go into it more below, but briefly - there is no where near enough no-take area set aside to achieve the 'desired outcomes', let alone too much. We dont even know how big these areas should be, but they certainly are not too big.

Who, determines how big that area is? It requires alot of research.

Consider this. A bunch of scientists get together and work out where they think marine parks ought to be put, based on the best available information to them. If hardcore conservationists had their way, these areas would extend all around the state, and all would be no-take. Instead, the scientific advisors find the best, representative areas of different habitats/ecosystems, the smallest areas they think need to be managed with conservation for the future in mind, mindful that political pressure drives the size of said areas down. Ideally this choice would be made with a full scientific understanding of breeding cycles, spatial and temporal distributions of everything, recruitment patterns, oceanography (currents, waves, tides, etc), for everything, all around the state. To do this properly would take many decades of focused, systematic scientific research. It would cost many many millions of dollars. There is much research being done, for an example see
http://www.marine.uwa.edu.au/recherche/
this was a big project, done over several years costing a few million (cant remember specifics - the info will be out there if you need to know exactly), and it only studied the distribution of habitats and the relation to fish distributions and abundances. It didnt study lifecycles, recruitment patterns or anything like that. One small piece of the puzzle in one area in the state. And it is heralded as a great success and example, which it is, but it is also a tiny fraction of what needs to be done before we can pretend we know 'enough' about the processes that affect our marine environment.

The scientists choosing marine reserve areas dont have time to wait for all this research (governments are elected every 4 years, so have 4 years to deliver on their promises to do this kind of work), so need to make decisions as best they can. This is their job, their training, and they have probably been working in their respective fields for many years. They have far more experience in these matters than recfishers, or RecFishWest.

So they choose the areas to be considered as marine parks. The marine parks get gazetted - that is they become law. Now they choose areas within those areas that should be no-take zones, and other zonings. Places of very high conservation value. If you will bear with me, think of this high-conservation area as a pie.
Now, enter Industry - no, sorry you cant have Area A as a conservation area because we have a port expansion planned. A chunk of pie is removed.
No, sorry, you cant have Area B - there is an oil well there and we need an operational buffer of 1 km around it. A chunk of pie is removed.
Commercial fishing - we generate a billion dollars from fishing Area C - you cant set that aside for conservation. A chunk of pie is removed.
Recreational fisherman - we catch all of our fish from Area D, you cant have that. Another chunk is removed.
So on, so forth.

So, the scientific advice that the area represented by the whole pie is highly valuable to the long-term maintenance of biodiversity (which includes fish size and abundance) around the state, is reduced to whatever is left over. Depending upon politics.

If, or should i say when, all of our WANTS (as opposed to NEEDS), are taken into account, the environment comes last - it cannot speak for itself. Remember that without fish there can be no fishing. We WANT to keep fishing in Area X. But the preservation of high biodiversity values NEEDS Area X to be no-take. Even though needs should outbalance wants, our wants win out.

Now, these left-over areas (no-take zones) get specified in the management plans for the marine parks. Management plans are reviewed every 10 years. They are not set in stone, like the outer marine park boundaries are. If it comes about that, after 10 years, the loss to recreational fisherman was deemed to be greater than the conservation outcomes of the no-take zoning, they can be changed. So, in response to Luke/Scaly there, this is how we can know if they have worked.

On that - Scaly, i wouldnt call them blanket closures, they would be better described as fragmented patchwork quilts. We hear the figure that scientists and conservationists are saying that our fisheries and marine habitats need 40% protection. We have something like 10% of our state waters in marine parks, of which, depending on the park, 0 - 30% are no-take zones. So we have something like less than 3% of our coastal waters set aside as no-take zones. This are hardly the "large areas" that Terry has described above, and that RecFishWest continually claim. This is no where near worlds best practice, according to the people who spend their lives studying these things. You and I sit here in our chairs and think we know everything, without spending a fraction of the time that scientists do, thinking about it and testing it. Of course science is not infallible, one major danger is thinking that we know everything about something because we have done X amount of science. Only to find that that particular technique didnt pick up something, or that we didnt know about something else at the time, which turns out to be a major factor in whatever we are studying.

So, we need more science. Yes indeed, from the blurb above it is clear that science underpins it all. The quote below comes from one of the Wangler threads Terry provided above.
http://www.westernangler.com.au/forum/Rottnest_Island_No_Fishing_Zones/m_97129/tm.htm

Terry Fuller:
"Lynnath Beckley is a member of the Marine Parks and Reserves Authority, and a member on the committee that designed the Rottnest zoning plan, and is known for very strong and some say uncompromising promotion of sanctuary areas over anything/everything else which might achieve things - see the first post for how that Rottnest committee operated..... Nuff said for everyone to see the links?????"

The thread talks, amongst other things, about a creel survey done as an honours thesis supervised by Lynnath Beckley. People were writing that part of the Rotto Island Authority's actions in the process were based partly on the results of the survey, results and methods which people on the thread were questioning. The general idea being floated by some posters was that it was somehow biased to promote sanctuary zones at Rotto. So that last line about the 'links' appear to me to question Dr Beckley's scientific integrity.

You can find info about her work here
http://www.marineresearch.murdoch.edu.au/
and elsewhere if you search. She is a prominent fishery biologist, highly respected in the marine science community with much experience here and overseas.

Do you want more science, or do you want science that supports your view? I might add that Terry is the moderator of that thread, and overall does a good job of also providing information etc. All in all, as far as I have been reading over the last few days, I believe he is a very valuable commentator on this issue. But compare his moderation on that site with Adam's, on this site. I understand that it would be very difficult to moderate a thread when you have a strong opinion on it, but then you should choose. Please do not take this as some kind of personal attack, just that the discussion is important and in public forums things shouldnt be influenced one way or the other.

With all of her scientific experience and background, Lynnath Beckley promotes sanctuary zones. You cannot become a respected scientist in your field if you present biased studies, or use biased methodologies - your papers wouldnt get past the peer review before they are published. For those not experienced in that process, I can tell you that it is very difficult to get a paper published, journal editors are extremely harsh on wordings and methods and the conclusions that you can draw. And I mean extremely. People, including the most experienced scientists, send manuscripts in, rejected, revised, rejected, revised, ad infinitum!!
So then, if she promotes sanctuary zones. Does this tell you that she is biased, or that her research experience tells her that they are necessary? TAKE A STEP BACK AND THINK ABOUT IT!!! It is no coincidence that many, if not most environmental scientists also have a conservationist streak! In the face of our technological advances, the natural world is under extreme pressure everywhere, in many ways. Who is best placed to notice and understand those pressures? Perhaps the people who have chosen the vocation to study them?

No, the process is not perfect. Yes, RecFishWest do good work to highlight its failings. But we need more no-take zones to preserve what we dont yet know about. I'll say it again.

THE PRECAUTIONARY PRINCIPLE

I would still like to know how many members of RecFishWest there are.

Ewan

Posts: 22

Date Joined: 04/05/06

If you are not attacking FRW

Thu, 2006-11-09 19:44

If you are not attacking FRW across the board then what are you doing? What are you saying, that even though the process is flawed, just accept the view points of the educated but not-unbiased as gospel even though history has shown that at times they have it completely wrong?

"We hear the figure that scientists and conservationists are saying that our fisheries and marine habitats need 40% protection."

20%, 30%, 40%, 50%? which is it?

"Now, enter Industry - no, sorry you cant have Area A as a conservation area because we have a port expansion planned. A chunk of pie is removed."

Ah, so you advocate that we should join the ranks of the altruistic and give our insignificant sliver of pie to the needy while other and more significant problem causes can continue unchecked and unabated?

"Now, these left-over areas (no-take zones) get specified in the management plans for the marine parks. Management plans are reviewed every 10 years. They are not set in stone, like the outer marine park boundaries are. If it comes about that, after 10 years, the loss to recreational fisherman was deemed to be greater than the conservation outcomes of the no-take zoning, they can be changed. So, in response to Luke/Scaly there, this is how we can know if they have worked."

Pull the other one Ewan- There have been local MPA's in effect for many years and I don't see too many studies being done. Nor do I see an about face happening after 10 years while the marine science concentrates on preservation of ecology rather than sustainable use.

THE PRECAUTIONARY PRINCIPLE- is to my great discust, a hijacked notion and not applied in it's original intent.

Andy Mac's picture

Posts: 4779

Date Joined: 03/02/06

More info please

Thu, 2006-11-09 20:38

"THE PRECAUTIONARY PRINCIPLE- is to my great discust, a hijacked notion and not applied in it's original intent."

Further elucidation would be good on that thought.....

I kind of thought that the precautionary principal in Ewan's context was simply saying that if you wait another 50 years before we get all the necessary science we will possibly have no biomass left to protect. Better to over provision and adjust in the fishermans favour at a later date than to underprovision now and risk bleeding the fishery we all love to a point where it can't recover. As an ex senior exec I know I would always overprovision for risk as that was simply prudential management. Only foolish maverick managers underprovision for risk. (No Mav I am not referring to you... hehehe)

Preservation of ecology and sustainable use aren't or shouldn't be mutually exclusive. I think that sustainable use needs to be the basis for future management of the resource and perhaps this is where a lot of frustration seems to be coming from as the ecology preservation theme seems to be dismisive of some of the sustainable fishing argument and somehow overriding it when it comes to the final decisions being made.

Please keep this debate going guys as I am learning heaps along the way from both sides of the equation. Thanks for all those links too Terry, keep on beavering mate.

Cheers

Andy Mac

____________________________________________________________________________

Cheers

Andy Mac (Fishwrecked Reeltime Editor & Forum Moderator)

Youngest member of the Fishwrecked Old Farts Club

Andy Mac's picture

Posts: 4779

Date Joined: 03/02/06

Aquaculture

Thu, 2006-11-09 21:17

What impact do you think aquaculture will have in the next 50 years?

How important will be the development of aquaculture in the feeding of the world's population?

How much of an impact would the contribution of aquaculture have on the commercial wildfish extraction levels and thereby the recreational fishing experience?

What needs to happen to get aquaculture to the top of the funding queue for further expansion?

I think the topic has a fair bit of relevance to this debate. I am interested in your views. Bit of a side track so if Adam thinks it would be better served on another forum page then we can move it.

Cheers

Andy Mac

____________________________________________________________________________

Cheers

Andy Mac (Fishwrecked Reeltime Editor & Forum Moderator)

Youngest member of the Fishwrecked Old Farts Club

Posts: 489

Date Joined: 11/08/05

More on MPAs and Recfishwest

Thu, 2006-11-09 21:54

Andy Mac

More good points. The precautionary principle? see http://www.westernangler.com.au/forum/m_70728/mpage_1/key_/tm.htm#70728 and give some comment on that. And who says we're waiting? See Commonwealth Marine Bioregional Planning http://www.deh.gov.au/coasts/mbp/index.html Yes Recfishwest is involved in that too - see later.

You are right about sustainable use being dismissed by some people, and yes there's a way to go in many fisheries and yes Recfishwest uses that in its thinking and submissions, and is pushing for that and yes there is a lot of opposition. But significant increases in closed areas without adjusting and getting sustainable fisheries management in the areas which remain open is a recipe for disaster and there plenty of examples of that.

Recfishwest representation. RFW claims to "represent the interests of Western Australian recreational fishers" not to represent them individually as though "they are all members of RFW." For some of the difficulties see "The pass mark is at 100%" http://www.westernangler.com.au/forum/m_98799/mpage_1/key_/tm.htm#98799

Recfishwest has an network for info while formulating policy. Recfishwest paid up membership has varied between 100 and 120 members since 1999. There are currently also 422 corresponding members of Recfishwest, (free membership) from all parts of Western Australia and all age groups.

Fishing Club members: The major angling associations are on the Board of Recfishwest. All members are automatically represented on, and contribute to the business of Recfishwest. Australian Anglers Association: 26 clubs and approximately 5000 members. Western Australian Gamefishing Association: 12 clubs and approximately 1800 members. Australian National Sportfishing Association: 5 affiliated clubs and just under 1000 members. Australian Underwater Federation: 3 affiliated clubs of approximately 250 members. Western Australian Trout and Freshwater Angling Association: single association with two branches in Bunbury and Pemberton and 140 members. Australian Fishing Tackle Association (just elected Oct 2006) direct contact with recreational anglers through affiliation with tackle stores. Charter Boat Owners and Operator's Association involved with RFW Policy Committee (elected Oct 2006) contact with angler users of charters.

Ewan

It's obvious you need to include comments from the other links I've given as well, assuming you've read them.

It's not enough to say "shift in ideology is not represented within RecFishWest's policies. For example in this link: http://www.recfishwest.org.au/PolicyMarineReservations.htm " without saying what and why.

For example that policy says "There are some justifications for the creation of marine reserves and no-take zones and that there will be situations in which these will outweigh the attendant consequential loss of amenity which may fall on recreational fishers." Recfishwest will provisionally support proposals for marine reservation and no-take zones where the following considerations are met: ....In general, no-take areas for marine conservation (ie, not for 'general' purposes) should be located as far as possible in areas which are not subject to existing community incompatible usages."

Interesting that the Department of the Environment and Heritage, Australian Government, says of MPA's " ....requires the involvement of recreational fishers in sharing information and working constructively with government and other stakeholders to respond to MPA proposals at the earliest stages of the process. In this way we are more likely to design MPAs that achieve biodiversity conservation objectives while minimising impact on resource users. Maximising community support for MPAs is critical to the overall success of the programme...."

and "Recreational fishing is a significant economic and leisure activity in Australia and access for this activity needs to be carefully considered and managed as a major consideration in MPA design."

and "While establishing MPAs will have implications for recreational fishing access it need not be a negative relationship and significant opportunities exist for recreational fishing and MPAs to be mutually supportive."

and "A key ingredient for a successful MPA programme is committed participants. We acknowledge that any system of MPAs needs to be accepted and supported by stakeholders in order to succeed in its primary purpose of biodiversity conservation."

and "...stakeholder information was found to provide valuable detail on patterns of use that show where MPAs could be located to help minimise impacts on resource users while still meeting biodiversity conservation goals" -- specifically referring to recreational anglers' input which changed the areas.

and "MPAs are not solely "no-take" reserves. The zoning is determined based on the conservation values that are to be protected and with full consideration of socio-economic impacts. Recreational fishing is an important activity in Australia. Conservation has had a longstanding philosophy underpinning responsible recreational fishing. Only through involvement in the MPA design process will interests of conservation and recreational use be able to identify areas of commonality and support. Working together will help ensure the best possible MPA outcomes are achieved."

and "To support this process, the Australian Government has provided funding support and other resources to the recreational fishing sector to help strengthen the capacity of this sector to engage in MPA consultations. This funding is to be used to facilitate a two way flow of information between the recreational fishing sector and the Australian Government regarding planning and policy issues of relevance to Commonwealth waters. In particular, the government is seeking information from the sector regarding potential impacts of proposed MPAs."

and BTW they say "The theory that MPAs can help nearby fished areas is still largely unproven,..."

All this is in the attachment to Recfish Australia Marine Protected Areas Seminar http://www.westernangler.com.au/forum/m_119915/mpage_1/key_/tm.htm#120854 which reported on the seminar on Marine Protected Areas run by Recfish Australia in Brisbane. Recfishwest had 5 people attending and actively involved in and supporting this seminar. Read the link.

That was attended by over 80 people from all around Australia. With only a couple of exceptions (eg NSW who feel they have been really done over by the MPA's in that State) everyone agreed that:-

MPA's will happen,

They give benefits,

They are for biodiversity conservations not for fisheries management,

They are a complement to but are not a replacement for proper Fisheries Management - which is essential,

Recreational fishermen must continue to be involved in the decisions,

Conservation objectives can be obtained, and good recreational fishing access can remain if the process is done properly with the right information.

Recfish Australia and State Peak Body representatives (includes Recfishwest) had a separate meeting with Commonwealth MPA people about the details of cooperation with the Recreational sector and getting the involvement and comments of recreational anglers. Much more will come from that....
====

The example http://www.marine.uwa.edu.au/recherche/ doesn't include any information about the current fish take from these areas and therefore the context is not complete. It doesn't say if these are pristine, relatively unaffected or heavily affected areas. This context is one critical thing to allow the data to be put into the proper perspective.

The quote from Frank Prokop talking about Rottnest was from a media release, on the day of the release of the plan, remembering that RFW had not had any prior involvement in the planning. An election promise is just that and sometimes people need to be reminded of what was promised. See page 11 of http://www.wa.alp.org.au/download.html?filename=electionpolicy/planforfisheries.pdf which says the Labor Government will "Reaffirm its commitment not to support bans on fishing at Rottnest Island."

Any way look at the actual Recfishwest submission on Rottnest http://www.recfishwest.org.au/SubRottnestJuly2006.htm and you will see that RFW did not oppose all the sanctuary zones and did make constructive suggestions for changes in accordance with the principles of its Marine Reserves policy.

Your comments about Marine Parks demonstrates the common confusion between Marine Parks, Marine Protected Areas and Sanctuary no take zones. They are NOT the same. See the links or any of WA Marine Park management plans on DEC website http://www.naturebase.net/national_parks/marine/index.html

Ewan says "Management plans are reviewed every 10 years. They are not set in stone, like the outer marine park boundaries are. If it comes about that, after 10 years, the loss to recreational fisherman was deemed to be greater than the conservation outcomes of the no-take zoning, they can be changed"

The park boundaries are not set in stone - example the extension of Ningaloo Marine Park after the last review, and yes the zones can be changed, but the two WA review examples have made the zones larger and more restrictive - example Ningaloo and Shoalwater, so yes it's possible, but most people knowing the process and the political pressures would consider it's very unlikely to result in relaxed restrictions.

Ewan says "So that last line about the 'links' appear to me to question Dr Beckley's scientific integrity."

Pity he didn't quote the 17 principles from "the Role of Science in Marine Park Planning. http://www.westernangler.com.au/forum/m_45462/mpage_1/key_/tm.htm#45462 or quote me "Scientists, (or engineers, or researchers, or whatever specialists) don't have the monopoly on being able to collect, analyse and interpret data and make suggestions or decisions.

Sure they have special skills in their chosen field, but sometimes that field is very specialised and therefore their knowledge is not broad enough to cover all the issues.

Unfortunately, there are plenty of examples of data being kept secret, selectively presented and interpreted and analysed to support some point of view or hypothesis. Some high profile people have been caught out and exposed. Many more have surely got away with it.

Openness is essential, as set out in many of the 17 points in the post. If there is nothing to hide then there can be no argument against openness and making all the data and the interpretations available. Openness and public access to all the data, etc. Nothing less. Even our current Labor Gov't has a policy on open government and decision making.

If ALL the existing data is used and that data combination supports what is proposed, then that's undeniable. But if the data is also capable of different interpretations, that is, there are equally valid alternative proposals, who's to say who's right?."

And fortunately, I have a full paper copy of Claire Smallwood's thesis http://www.marineresearch.murdoch.edu.au/abstracts/SmallwoodC.pdf "Shore-based recreational angling creel survey and boating activity assessment at Rottnest Island, WA" The supervisor was Lynnath Beckley.

See http://www.recfishwest.org.au/RottnestSubmissionMain.html#PoorScience which says "The recent study of shore-based angling has been quoted in the marine plan and elsewhere to indicate that participation in fishing at Rottnest is relatively low and the catches are small. There is no information presented on the very much greater amount of boat fishing where participation and catches are much higher.

This survey was designed and carried out and the data was analysed and conclusions arrived at based on the student's apparent limited knowledge of the subject of recreational fishing and the fish species caught. Others can look at that same data and use their knowledge of fish and recreational fishing to put very different interpretations on the data and come to some very different conclusions on what the data means and how that could/should be used in developing a Rottnest Marine Management Strategy.

The abstract says: - "Management concerns in the reserve include non-compliance with fishing regulations, large catch of non-target species, .... and user conflicts." The "large catch of non target species" was based on asking people what they were fishing for, with 44% saying "herring", but then classifying any fish that was not a herring as a "non-target" species. This completely ignores the reality that putting a small bait into the water invites bites from many other valuable recreational species such as garfish, trevally, wrasse, tarwhine, pike, yellowtail, tailor, yellow eyed, mullet, whiting, etc, even if they were not the nominated "target" catch.

The catch results were portrayed as "Recreational anglers can catch little else but small herring and tarwhine because the fishery is so degraded." and "The fishing experience is so poor that recreational anglers can't even catch their bag limits of herring and tarwhine." Both of these ignore that herring and tarwhine from the shore in those areas are small, small tarwhine are the scourge of many beach fishermen because they are worse that blowies in some places, many of the people fishing are occasional anglers, and that very few people were fishing for long enough and few would want to catch their combined bag limit of 40 fish.

The statement page 52 "Recreational fishers frequently retain a high percentage of juvenile fish..." is deliberately misleading because it are not supported by the data which says elsewhere "Overall, the total number of retained undersized fish comprised 1.4% of the total catch on Rottnest." 1.4% of undersize fish is NOT a "high percentage."

So unfortunately, that thesis is misleading and the supervisor allowed those limited interpretations to be published and then allowed them to be referenced and be used as justification for the Rottnest proposals in http://www.rottnestisland.com/en/Marine+Management+Strategy/Sanctuary+Zones/default.htm#Science says "A recent survey of recreational fish catches showed that bag limits were seldom achieved at Rottnest and few large fish were caught (Smallwood C.B., et al, in press)." and in http://www.rottnestisland.com/en/Marine+Management+Strategy/Questions+and+Answers/default.htm "...a recent survey which revealed that most fish caught were small and bag limits were not achieved. (Smallwood, C.B., et al, in press)...."

The first also says "Recreational fisheries management strategies alone do not provide for recovery of fish populations.." which is wrong and misleading - example Shark Bay Pink Snapper.

Ewan says "I understand that it would be very difficult to moderate a thread when you have a strong opinion on it, but then you should choose. Please do not take this as some kind of personal attack,..." but it is, even if it is not intentional.

A moderator is not a censor, or an editor. Opinions are allowed, and if he edits other people's posts then people demand to know why, and he'd better have a good reason.

My comments are posted as an individual opinion, and are mostly backed up with references or facts or principles. I do not EVER edit other people's posts to fit my opinion. If the case is good, it does not need to be misrepresented or forced onto people - it's value will be recognised for what it is.

Personal attacks on someone else are one reason to edit. I would not edit personal attacks on me even if or though I could do it. Leave the post there to show that the poster has lost the plot and resorted to insults because he can't influence with logic.

Ewan, this would be so much easier if you would only phone me..... You know the number.

TerryF
=====

Beavering away in the background......

Kasey L.'s picture

Posts: 1390

Date Joined: 02/03/06

hmm, i might open my mouth

Thu, 2006-11-09 22:06

hmm, i might open my mouth at this point (i'm trying to keep most of my comments reserved until when I have at least a bit of an educated notion in the area ;))

as wild marine stocks become depleted, aquaculture will play a big prominence in the supply of seafood. in the last 10 years, the industry of marine aquaculture as a while has grown in the millions per annum. (i cant find a decent referrence off a quick-search on google; sorry, its in my notes somewhere, ill put it up if i have the time). an example is the huge growth of prawn farms in south east asia. this is the 'opinion' bit, but i have little doubt that aquaculture output may in the (not-so-soon perhaps) overtake 'wild-fished' stocks; its a bit hard to see the effect here in WA, where there are ample wild-fish stocks, and again I'll need to search for the refs, but you sort of get my point. an example in WA would be the pearl industry (unreferrenced).

although aquaculture may have its benefits, there are still some major issues to be addressed, some of which (in my limited knowledge) stand out as those that REALLY need to be addressed.

one of these is that certain species, eg mud crabs (refs on the computer in Pdf, unfortunately), the young are still obtained from wild sources, and then 'fattened up', much like the bluefin tuna we hear about. until better techniques for reproduction can be developed, there is still a high reliance on wild fish stocks for aquaculture (wild spawn is needed).

second of these, is the reliance of wild marine stocks for food. eg tuna and mudcrabs, where a supply of fish is needed to provide food in the farms. their nutrition is mostly obtained from wild stocks, (eg for mudcrabs 'low-value' fish which are netted from the wild, such as those rejected for the fish-markets) or mulies for tuna. the reasons for these vary, such as the farmed stock being reliant on fish protein, or the way that they feed, etc. this is an interesting area, as if a solution was found, it would a) make whoever produced it possibly very very rich, b) decrease reliance on wild stocks and b) make it alot easier to farm certain marine species.

so (heres the opinion bit again) i believe those are amongst the issues that should be at the top of the queue to be addressed.

also, there are problems such as concentrated offal/pollution from farmed marine stock and disease which may spread to local stock. in theory, if aquaculture became more cost effective and profitable, then it would substitute for commercial wildfish populations. this has already occured where the wildfish populations have decreased to where farming them is more efficient that harvesting, but still, farming fish should not be illustrated as having 'little/no impact on wild stocks'.

i don't know if my post can/has addressed some of those questions andy, as im jsut writing this in my spare time at home, so its no report or paper, just things off the top of my head (and so, errors might occur, but ive read this twice and it seems pretty sound).

i think the profits themselves drive companies to do the R&D to get aquaculture to the top of the funding queue... its alot of money involved, (ref not included due to limited time to find stats)

one direction that i might see aquaculture in the future is genetically engineered stock. research has been done on salmon (if i remember correctly) that allows the fish to grow much faster. technically speaking, genetically engineering fish is not as complicated as mammals... but i wont get into that. it has is problems too (eg GE genes mixing with wild stock, etc), but its a possible and plausible step in the future.

ok i think ive rambled all that i can think of. maybe some of it might be useful and relevant to the thread/discussion, hopefully ;)

it would be interesting to see what kind of replies to this i get, as i have a keen interest in the farming of mud-crab (lots of demand and $$, unmatched by supply, you might guess), although my studies only touch on marine aquaculture, so i am by far an expert and would only possess 'general' knowledge of the issues at hand. as i cover more units that deal with the subject in the future, no doubt my understanding will hopefully increase, but these are my views and understandings as is now.

Pump iron to drop iron!

Posts: 116

Date Joined: 13/09/06

be nice , be nice, be

Fri, 2006-11-10 08:02

be nice , be nice, be nice

Instead of reading thousands of links or fisheries management papers and wasting your time, Ask your self this,

What does your gut feeling say when it comes to the sustainability of the fishery no matter where you live, .

If the answer is my gut is wrenching or turning, well there is your bloody answer. Stop ginning around waiting for the so called science that the dictators want and fix the bloody fishery, chuck ya fishing rights out the window and look after the rights of the fish and future generations. don't let anyone feed you with mumbo jumbo and your rights, it ain't rocket science , no fish , no rights.There is no money or time for proper science the best researchers will say this, you must go on your gut feeling, its called the precautionary principle

Ewen your like a breath of fresh air, almost reminds me of the great one. Bo Schafer from Western Angler only if we had his insight

Wally

and I said i wasn't posting. I blame scaly its all your bloody fault, you owe me beer for this. I need help its like a friggin drug

Posts: 489

Date Joined: 11/08/05

Yep, need proper Fisheries

Fri, 2006-11-10 09:17

Yep, need proper Fisheries management and marine protected areas and fish habitat protection areas.

Hands up all those who are saying "just do it" and leaving it to that "Mr Someone Else" to do the hard work and wrestle with all the details.

Hands up all those who are working on getting those things actually done.

What's the difference between those two sets of people?

TerryF
=====

Beavering away in the background......

Adam Gallash's picture

Posts: 15439

Date Joined: 29/11/05

On topic

Fri, 2006-11-10 09:11

Just to keep it on topic, I have removed your post Mav and sent it to Felix aka Garry via private message. I logged in a his posting works fine, but TerryF did mention that he was having trouble responding the other day. Hopefully it should be working fine by now, private message me if theres any problems.

And thanks for keeping it civil Wally. ;)

On the aquaculture subject, it is going to be huge business, already is. We met with several Singaporean guys about 7 years that were turning over 100 million US worth of tank bred fish per year. We were looking for locations off the Malaysian coastline (Kota Kinabalu) suitable for penning wild bred fish but were unable to find somewhere which had the requirements of the investors. It will certainly be interesting to see what part it plays in removing pressure from oceanic stocks in the future.

____________________________________________________________________________

Site Admin - Just ask if you need assistance

Posts: 116

Date Joined: 13/09/06

Hands up all those

Fri, 2006-11-10 09:50

Quote:
Hands up all those who are saying "just do it" and leaving it to that "Mr Someone Else" to do the hard work and wrestle with all the details.

Thats where all the details should be left to people who are actually getting paid to do it, like fisheries WA, instead of having to deal with political crap from the likes of the average Joe and organizations.Their decisions shouldn't be swayed by hot potatoes or voter backlash, hell we are dealing with fish here not bloody sheep in a paddock,Everyone is a bloody expert but really there are only a handful that should make the decisions.

Sometimes the people that think they know, with their mumbo jumbo slow down the actual people who do know .

As for wrestling. why should we wrestled Terry. there goes that bloody rights thing again.( the whole problem) We should be told by Fisheries WA this is going to happen for the great of the fish, stick your rights because it is our job to manage the fish.We should trust the people that know a lot more then me or you to do the job without complications or prejudice from others that think they know.

here is one for you Terry. hands up who actually has the qualifications in WA to actually fix the fishery.

Wally

Ewan's picture

Posts: 271

Date Joined: 15/05/06

Again, I guess we are just

Fri, 2006-11-10 10:12

Again, I guess we are just ideologically opposed.

Terry, you said:
"For example that policy says "There are some justifications for the creation of marine reserves and no-take zones and that there will be situations in which these will outweigh the attendant consequential loss of amenity which may fall on recreational fishers."
Recfishwest will provisionally support proposals for marine reservation and no-take zones where the following considerations are met: ....In general, no-take areas for marine conservation (ie, not for 'general' purposes) should be located as far as possible in areas which are not subject to existing community incompatible usages.""

The questions i am raising and that others seem to agree with are along the lines of why should the loss of amenity to recfisherman outweigh the justifications for the creation of no-take zones. No-take zones are not slapped down randomly, or as the 'vilification' that Frank spoke of in that media release, slapped down on the best fishing spots as punishment for our past sins. They are identified with the best available information. If they are only located as far away as possible from people then that would seem to be a waste of money to protect an area that is, by default, already protected as a consequence of its distance from people. People are the reason we need to conserve. It is no coincidence that the areas that people want to fish are also the areas people want to conserve. This is because they have very high biological values. Which need conservation for the future of their survival as well as for our future use and enjoyment.

The 'attendant consequential loss of amenity which may fall on recreational fishers'. Is, of course, a subjective thing. What do you really lose by not being able to fish in 1-3%, 5 or even 10% of our coastal waters that are, or might be, closed to fishing? You can fish elsewhere. You can fish next to them. Once the dust settles, you will not even know the difference. Does anyone regret not being able to fish at Parker Point? The zones in Ningaloo? So this subjective thing is influenced by discussions in this debate. One thing I have written about is when people say 'large areas locked up' - common terms used. They are not large, when placed in context. They are not locked up - you just cant fish there. And there is NOT no scientific evidence that they enhance biodiversity (including fish size and abundance). The bigger the zones are, the more effective they are at doing that. I am spending all my time writing these posts and responses but hopefully i will get the chance to look up some references.

Also, yes Terry, you have the right to your opinion and you have the right to post them on web forums, but as a RecFishWest board member and moderator of a popular and potentially influential web forum, you have certain responsibilities. Many people listen to you, which is a good thing when you are doing the righty and posting valuable information, as you have been here, and do on that site too. (On that note, Adam is there any way we could upload documents, like PDF's and such that arent on the web?) But it can also be a misleading thing when they are listening to things like that which you wrote about Dr Beckley - in drawing links between her scientific opinions on the value of sanctuary zones and the supposed underhanded tactics of RIA. These are your opinions and that is OK, but as the moderator it makes the thread a bit one-sided. Whether in reality or just in our perceptions, this is the case. The Wangler web forum is not a RecFishWest web forum, yet it would appear so. If you have information that Dr Beckley is acting inappropriately in some way, by all means post it up. Or say it as a normal poster - but not as a moderator. Terry, and anyone else, if it came across as a personal attack, I apologise - I promise you it was not meant to be. I will give you a call shortly - I look forward to meeting you and perhaps sharing a beer/wine/coffee/tea, with nothing but good intentions. I suspect I have alot to learn from you and your work in this area!

By the way, Dr Beckley isnt the one who publishes the study - it goes to a journal where it is peer reviewed by a number of editors and judged on its own merits, and outside the context of all this stuff. Was it published in the end? Maybe it was not good enough. I remember seeing her present her thesis and I had doubts about it myself. It was too lightweight in my opinion, as you mentioned it only sampled certain places at certain times and not boat fishers etc etc. Nevertheless it is the only study that can be drawn on - I also wish that there were more! Creel surveys are very tricky things to do well.

As a respected fisheries biologist I would imagine that Dr Beckley has just the right specific skills relevant to this topic.

I agree with most of your 17 points Terry. Openness is essential. I have to admit that I am behind the ball on the specifics of these individual proposals etc - as I've said it would certainly appear that there are failings in the process that RecFishWest highlight. but RecFishWest should also understand that they are not responsible for marine conservation in this state and as such serve as advisors, not deciders. By simple definition, RecFishWest has to be opposed to no-take zones. In reality they are not because they recognise that no-take zones are required for long-term fishing quality. The grey area in between is when they say "in the right places for the right reasons".
And again I say that I am talking about something like what Wally said - yes I have used specific examples to demonstrate my points but I am talking about the need for more acceptance of more sanctuary zones, based on whatever science we have. Read the initial thread topic. If this is anywhere near correct (how can they accurately say 2048? that is silly) then we have 50ish years to do something about it. If that means 'locking up' *SOME* *SMALL* areas based on the hint that they are environmentally important, then we should do so.

No Scaly, I dont "advocate that we should join the ranks of the altruistic and give our insignificant sliver of pie to the needy while other and more significant problem causes can continue unchecked and unabated". This is another part of the fight that I think would be wasted on this site. I am not talking about that, I am talking about us as recfishers shooting ourselves in the foot. If I was to start writing about those issues my posts would expand by a couple of times the size of these and I think you dont want that.

Without fish, there is no fishing. Wally said it best.

If, after a review, the zones of those parks were increased in size this would seem to indicate something? I dont believe that there is more political pressure to increase them then there is to decrease them. Rotto is a perfect example. What better place to put sanctuary zones than this island, just offshore of the capital city, in temperate waters, yet far enough out to be influenced by the Leeuwin current, showing very high biodiversity including species that 'shouldn't' be found here (more northern species, etc). Alan Pearce (CSIRO scientist - a major figure in WA marine science) wrote some good stuff on that that i would like to find and put up. Biodiversity hotspot and the like. No time at the moment. Yet, under extreme pressure from RecFishWest and other vocal fishers, and against scientific advice, the government promised not to. And in the public statement, RecFishWest want to hold them to that.

As I said before, with more research it is highly unlikely that the areas identified as needed for no-take conservation are going to decrease in size or abundance. Can anyone really argue against that?

Gotta work, thanks for writing back. Keep it up. This is an important issue. I know it hasnt started here, but there is certainly no need to stop it. There is much to get through still!

Ewan

Ewan's picture

Posts: 271

Date Joined: 15/05/06

Informal catch-up

Fri, 2006-11-10 11:04

Would anyone be interested in an informal meeting to have a chat about this stuff? Both 'sides' (it is a very grey argument)
At a pub or cafe or restuarant - no documents etc, just talking about ideas etc.

Anyone interjecting excessively, raising voices, banging fists etc gets banned from the table. Just a friendly chat to get to know each other and work out where we agree and disagree. Its too tedious to do on this forum, as Terry indicates. No need to try and get as many numbers there to support your view, just whoever wants to talk can come and talk.

Perhaps this already happens or has happened - anyone?

Seriously, all points and arguments aside, I think there is a pretty strong undercurrent of opinion amongst recfishers that agree in principle with alot of the ideas I have written here, about a more general acceptance of closed areas or times etc. ALOT of people I talk to, recfishers or not, agree with most of the points I make, or would like to make - and not because I convice them. If RecFishWest are the best way we can achieve our conservation aims then we dont want to undercut them. If RecFishWest arent the best way to get our ideas across then as Andy sort of suggests we need to get more organised and vocal, within the RecFishWest organisation or from the outside.
Before we butt heads we should see if we need to!

Posts: 22

Date Joined: 04/05/06

"If that means 'locking up'

Fri, 2006-11-10 11:59

"If that means 'locking up' *SOME* *SMALL* areas based on the hint that they are environmentally important, then we should do so."

20-50% of all inshore waters is not a *SMALL* area IMHO

"Seriously, all points and arguments aside, I think there is a pretty strong undercurrent of opinion amongst recfishers that agree in principle with alot of the ideas I have written here, about a more general acceptance of closed areas"

I think you might be over estimating the level of support or undercurrent in a number of areas including support for no-take zones and your percieved lack of support of RFW by recfishers- but you have your opinion and I have mine, and you know what they say about opinions ;)

By the way Ewan- Do you have an opinion on some of the latest proposed MPA's for WA. I'd be interested to hear your thoughts on the Capes proposal?

Ewan's picture

Posts: 271

Date Joined: 15/05/06

Undercurrents

Fri, 2006-11-10 12:41

You might be right Scaly - perhaps I and the other posters on this forum are the only ones who think that way - I might point out that so far, without having tried to encourage anyone to post here, the count seems to be in my favour. On the Wangler website it would be in yours. Neither are a good indicator of general opinion - only people who look at these sites and only people who have the internet and only people who feel like posting, do. Hopefully in the end we will see!

Could you explain the 20-50% of all inshore waters thing? - I cant think of where you might be talking about. Lets not forget that in the majority of marine park areas you can fish as you would outside. We are talking mostly about no-take zones here and there certainly isnt 20-50% of inshore waters set aside as no-take. What does IMHO stand for?

The Capes proposal was on my list of things to read this weekend so I'll get back to you. I've got a copy, just havent read it yet. It is a pretty awesome part of the world with many 'uses' and beginning to be under alot of pressure and national and international focus. This one is very important to get as right as possible I think.

Jamie Chester's picture

Posts: 66

Date Joined: 12/11/06

whoaaa nelly!!

Sun, 2006-11-12 19:43

First post here but I often pop in for a read so I'll post something on this - one of my pet subjects.

To begin with that press release I think was more to do with international situations rather than Australian stuff. And yes Ewan those situations are a little different.

As for sea-levels rising etc - interesting point- did you know by the way that Rottnest has only been an island for 5000 years? Those habitats are very transient - sea levels rise and fall all the time. With or without global warming those places will disappear sooner or later - not saying we shouldn't look after them - just a philosophical point.

A true conservationist would be welcoming sea-level change anyway because it will knock a fair few of us off - over-population is the main cause of overfishing. I'm saying this tongue in cheek - sort of - but in reality it is the cause of most our conservation probelms.

But back on track - what evidence is there to support sanctuary zones as this super duper management tool? Bugger all really. Yes there are studies that show larger sized fish in SZ (derr!) but very little empirical data to show that they add to a species recruitment level - which is the important thing.

But in reality they are probably effective for certain species in certain places - but I don't support the Rotto closures in regards to pelagic fish (demersals are the ones that don't move around - they are just big words with simple meanings) because there is simply no point to it - it is throwing the baby out with the bath water and I fully support Recfishwests stand on these particular sanctuary zones.

BUT like Recfishwest I do support sz in the right areas for the right reasons. There should be a five nm wide zone out to the 200 isobath to protect dhuies etc IMO. But protecting salmon, herring and spanish mackerel off west end?? - please Ewan you must realise this is like trying to kill an elephant with a paperclip - the only thing it does is impact on the rec sector for NO gains whatsoever.

And where is the imaginary sanctuary zone vetween Trigg and Hillarys anyone?? Anyone??

And Wally if it was left to Fisheries WA it would work out like Jurien Bay mate where the lobster boys were still allowed to pot everywhere - there are politics in Fisheries WA as much as there is in Recfishwest.

But honestly knowing Frank and Terry etc - they are doing far more good than harm for rec fishing in this state - and if you dont like what they are doing get involved in a constructive way.

Andy Mac's picture

Posts: 4779

Date Joined: 03/02/06

IMHO

Fri, 2006-11-10 13:31

I always thought it was "In My Humble Opinion"

Doesn't matter, kind of the same thing anyway.

Some good dialogue going here, the environmental get together sounds like another Fishwrecked first if we can get it off the ground. Just remember I wear glasses so no fisticuffs, because my moderator duties don;t go that far.

Rule #1 for such an event would have to be - Don't attend unless you can control your temper and are prepared to listen to others.

Cheers

Andy Mac

____________________________________________________________________________

Cheers

Andy Mac (Fishwrecked Reeltime Editor & Forum Moderator)

Youngest member of the Fishwrecked Old Farts Club

Posts: 22

Date Joined: 04/05/06

"Could you explain the

Fri, 2006-11-10 16:13

"Could you explain the 20-50% of all inshore waters thing? - I cant think of where you might be talking about."

Thats the usual catchcry from the conservation sector on how 20-50% should be no-take areas and anything that doesn't fall within this realm is a gross injustice and failure to protect the ecology. The reality is that 20-50% of inshore waters should be a MPA but not exclusively a no-take area.

"This one is very important to get as right as possible I think."

Me too but it all depends on what your definition of 'right'is which is why I would be interested to hear your opinion of the Capes proposal

Posts: 489

Date Joined: 11/08/05

Fisheries Management and Marine Parks.

Sat, 2006-11-11 09:43

Everyone

The initial thread referenced a report which said "as overfishing and pollution destroy ocean ecosystems"

Seems logical to me that this is also saying that overfishing and pollution are some of the critical things which need to be controlled wherever it occurs.

Bear with me, it is important to look at the whole of this and not extract a few words or a single sentence and jump into a reply. So:-

Who thinks having no take areas is
1. necessary and sufficient to control pollution, and
2. enough to balance the effects of over fishing.
if these are bad enough to destroy ocean ecosystems? Is it the notake area or the other management actions which actually control pollution/overfishing and are these dependent on having no take areas?. If so, give an example of where this is actually done in any of the WA Marine parks. A clue http://www.naturebase.net/national_parks/marine/index.html

Who thinks that closing areas without properly managing the excessive fishing pressures will not cause the fished areas to get much worse?

Who thinks marine park planning and management of fisheries should be coordinated, not done in isolation and ignoring the other as is done in WA at present? I do.

Who says the management of WA fisheries is okay and does not need to change? Not me, so don't imply that I do and get sidetracked onto arguing why.

Who says marine protected areas don't have benefits and a place? Not me, so ditto.

Who thinks that sustainability is a serious issue? Hopefully everyone because I certainly say that, so don't say I'm ignoring it.

Who says we have to learn from, and use the experience of overseas areas? Hopefully everyone because I certainly say that.

Who says we should just follow the lead of overseas areas without making some attempt to adapt it for Western Australian conditions? Another application of those important "role of science" principles.

Who thinks that the Perth metro area (at least Moore River to Port Bouvard) and areas near population centres and access points need much tighter fisheries management including closed areas? I do.

Who thinks the State 3 nautical mile boundary for Marine Parks covers enough of the area where action is needed?

Who thinks that some authorities sometimes take the easy copout way of banning something rather than doing the harder job of managing it properly?.

Who thinks it's easy to get a representative opinion from recreational anglers? Give examples if you do.

Who thinks people should take every possible opportunity to educate recreational anglers about all the issues - including the cumulative impact each of their individual, possibly little bit of fishing might be having?. (Edited 2:30 pm to make is clearer I mean each individual's effect)

Who thinks that recreational anglers are sometimes a "soft target" when it comes to closing off areas and their views are not known or are not taken into account? (note the word sometimes)

Why is the measure of conservation only the percentage of totally closed (no take) areas?.

Who thinks that the large areas of remote WA coastline and ocean (inaccessible to recreational anglers) are important for biodiversity conservation?

Why isn't there some recognition of areas where there is little take? Who's harvesting there and affecting anything and responsible? = Commercial (and illegal overseas fishing in the north.)

Wally

"who actually has the qualifications in WA to actually fix the fishery...?"

Qualifications and knowledge are one very important thing - - but the REAL question is "who has the authority to actually MAKE the changes?" and the answer to that is ONLY the Minister for Fisheries can MAKE the changes, and he will make his decisions based on lots of things.

"...instead of having to deal with political crap from the likes of the average Joe and organizations.Their decisions shouldn't be swayed by hot potatoes or voter backlash...."

Yes, I agree entirely, but the reality is that the political issues, lobbying by interest groups, other pressures, conflicting information, politician's perceptions of a voter backlash, etc etc can and DO all play a part in decisions being made, not being made, or not following advice or not doing what some people think or know is bleeding obvious.

That's the REALITY. People can ignore the reality if they want, but that won't make it go away or stop influencing decisions. Damn reality, why won't it cooperate and be exactly like my perception of the world and what it should be???

"...why should we wrestle?..." Because if someone doesn't put a recreational perspective and point of view and make it clear what one particular sector of the community (ie recreational anglers) expect to be done in managing fish and environmental resources which belong to the entire community, then the other groups which are putting their perspectives will get listened to and can or will influence the decisions. One would hope it's all about balance and sustainability for the fish/environment, but sometimes that's a vain hope when political considerations come in.

Ewan

Moderating - mainly for stopping abuse or hijacking, and should include keeping posts on topic, but this is incredibly difficult. This Fishwrecked thread is a perfect example of people introducing so (too) many new topics, instead of starting new threads. Moderating is not about censoring or influencing what is posted.

I don't think it is intentional, but the reality is your questions and statements about my responsibilities, and my being both a moderator and a poster on the Western Angler forum are questioning my integrity and reputation, which as you can guess is important to me. But I don't have any problem with my integrity being put to any test.

I am a moderator by invitation of the Wangler site owners, there are 20 different sub forums on the Western Angler forum, I am a moderator on only 2 forums, the "Fisheries Management and Environment Issues" and "Community Events" forums, and that the Wangler forum does not currently have a way a moderator can post as though he is an "ordinary" poster.

If you think there is an issue with my being both a moderator and a poster on the Western Angler Fisheries Management and Environment Issues forum, then the proper place to discuss that is on that Wangler forum, not here on Fishwrecked. Go to it. Get it out in the open and see what the response is.

A "Recfishwest forum?" That forum is for "Fisheries Management and Environment Issues" and naturally Recfishwest's activities include a lot about the Fisheries management and environmental management in Western Australia as they affect recreational fishing, so naturally a lot of what they do has relevance to that Western Australian forum. Other people post about stuff from other areas too.

I use that forum to advise people about WA issues, some of which include what Recfishwest is doing (usually as is posted on their own RFW website), some in response to questions like "why doesn't somebody do something?", some about what the WA Department of Fisheries is doing, WA marine planning activities, and so on.

Do some analysis of all the posts on that forum, and come up with some percentages and that might change your perception about it being a Recfishwest forum. But anyway, what would be wrong with that if it also allowed other opinions and information, which it clearly does.

Lots of your other questions and comments are answered in the references I have given.

Ewan, I look forward to talking with you about lots of these issues.

TerryF
=====

Beavering away in the background......

Posts: 116

Date Joined: 13/09/06

Terry again you are

Sat, 2006-11-11 18:36

Terry again you are justifying the fight or your/ our rights, we or anyone else shouldn't have any rights when it comes to fisheries management, this is what needs to happen and we are going to do it, if you don't like it take up farking golf, thats what fisheries should say.They are paid to manage the fishery let them do their job with out outside mumbo jumbo from all sectors

What other restrictions/ management tools can they use to help the Jewie Terry, besides No take areas in the Metro

Wally

Posts: 65

Date Joined: 27/09/06

Adam Felix still cant log

Sat, 2006-11-11 19:47

Adam, Felix still cant log in, well cant post . this post is to show that I can log his name and post but he cant from his puta, and he is getting angry please help him

Wally

edit he can log in but cant post, it doesnt even have his name up the top and cant read or view a profile or pm's, help he isnt angry anymore and he is playing lego now

Adam Gallash's picture

Posts: 15439

Date Joined: 29/11/05

Wierd

Sat, 2006-11-11 20:50

Got me beat on that one, will get Sambo the drupal specialist to have a look.

____________________________________________________________________________

Site Admin - Just ask if you need assistance

Posts: 489

Date Joined: 11/08/05

Logging in/posting.

Sat, 2006-11-11 21:56

Garry

I had a similar problem - could read the posts on Fishwrecked, but it didn't show the post reply option, even though it showed me as logged in in the online users list on the left hand side. This was using Internet Explorer. IE was logging me in and out OK on other sites.

Could log in to Fishwrecked and post from the same computer using Firefox.

Logged in and out a few times using Firefox, then Internet Explorer/Fishwrecked would log me in and out OK and let me post. Mystery to me coz I didn't change anything in IE.

TerryF
=====

Beavering away in the background......

Posts: 489

Date Joined: 11/08/05

Banging on about "Rights" deep sighs.....

Sat, 2006-11-11 21:59

Wally

Deep sighs.... Which of these words from my post do you not understand, and what leads you to say I'm "justifying the fight or your/ our rights"? therefore implying that I'm fighting against all changes, and using "rights" to justify that.

Quote TerryF in this thread "Who says the management of WA fisheries is okay and does not need to change? Not me, so don't imply that I do and get sidetracked onto arguing why." and

"Who thinks that the Perth metro area (at least Moore River to Port Bouvard) and areas near population centres and access points need much tighter fisheries management including closed areas? I do." and

"Who thinks that sustainability is a serious issue? Hopefully everyone because I certainly say that, so don't say I'm ignoring it." End quote.

How much clearer do I need to say it? Words of only 1 syllable?

Show me where I (me, TerryF, not anyone else) have used the words "rights" in this thread.

Then separately, show me where I have used it anywhere else, particularly in the context of our "rights" taking priority over sustainability. I can help you - the only place I have used the word "rights" is in a response to your use of the word in http://www.westernangler.com.au/forum/m_72185/mpage_1/key_/tm.htm where I said:-

Quote:- "The heading "Your Rights Or The Fishes Rights" is misleading. It is not one OR the other. It is not "if you have one you can't have the other", and having one does not exclude having the other.

1. People have rights, 2. The fish have rights, and then 3. There's the right thing to do. The solution / combination might mean people don't get all they want.

The real questions should be:- How do we recognise and get the correct balance between 1. people's rights and 2. fishes' rights and 3. the right thing to do?

What is "correct"? It is a package that everyone can understand what and why, can accept it is needed and it is justified by real data, it looks after the fish, it is sustainable (or better), environmentally responsible, gives people some level of access to the fish, etc. etc." end quote
=====

Do I have to say "needs much tighter fisheries management including closed areas" lots of times? I thought saying it once would be enough, but then I didn't add "to protect the Jewie" - so I didn't score 100%, so I didn't pass, instead I have failed in your eyes.

So OK, here I go.

"Perth Metro needs much tighter fisheries management including closed areas to protect the Jewie" Signed TerryF.
"Perth Metro needs much tighter fisheries management including closed areas to protect the Jewie" Signed TerryF.
"Perth Metro needs much tighter fisheries management including closed areas to protect the Jewie" Signed TerryF.
"Perth Metro needs much tighter fisheries management including closed areas to protect the Jewie" Signed TerryF.
"Perth Metro needs much tighter fisheries management including closed areas to protect the Jewie" Signed TerryF.
"Perth Metro needs much tighter fisheries management including closed areas to protect the Jewie" Signed TerryF.
"Perth Metro needs much tighter fisheries management including closed areas to protect the Jewie" Signed TerryF.
"Perth Metro needs much tighter fisheries management including closed areas to protect the Jewie" Signed TerryF.
"Perth Metro needs much tighter fisheries management including closed areas to protect the Jewie" Signed TerryF.
"Perth Metro needs much tighter fisheries management including closed areas to protect the Jewie" Signed TerryF.
"Perth Metro needs much tighter fisheries management including closed areas to protect the Jewie" Signed TerryF.
"Perth Metro needs much tighter fisheries management including closed areas to protect the Jewie" Signed TerryF.
"Perth Metro needs much tighter fisheries management including closed areas to protect the Jewie" Signed TerryF.
"Perth Metro needs much tighter fisheries management including closed areas to protect the Jewie" Signed TerryF.
"Perth Metro needs much tighter fisheries management including closed areas to protect the Jewie" Signed TerryF.
"Perth Metro needs much tighter fisheries management including closed areas to protect the Jewie" Signed TerryF.

I'll even give it to you in writing, signed and dated, if that will stop you posting misleading stuff about what I say.

TerryF
=====

Beavering away in the background......

Posts: 116

Date Joined: 13/09/06

Who's Damaging recreational fishing

Sun, 2006-11-12 08:55

Terry you are getting all flustered, no need too. There isn't much we can do to manage the Jewie and other demersals in the metro without closed areas, lets face it we could bring the bag limit down to one, have those unfair tag systems in place.The problem is and its what I am trying to say is, you and every other knocker has to fight every proposal put forward, They / you pick the scientists you wish to believe because they back the recreational fishing ideals, yeah yeah the greenies do it too, but again blind freedy can see what is going on here its called mismanagement. And then you will say well they should manage it properly and you knowing full well the ins and out of Fisheries WA, that cant happen without massive dollars spent.Mean while the fish are getting ripped out faster then ever, and cant recruit quick enough to make up for it. As I have said before Terry show me one Marine park/ no take zone/ FHPA that you or Recfishwest have supported from day one, even if it is on principle.Then there was a claim that recreational fisherman were supported on the Rotto marine parks fiasco ( norm , cuey etc) but no one could say what they presented. Now call me a cynic but fark me I wanted to know exactly what was put forward, Are they representing my rights or their rights what they think is best for me, If it was anything like what has been done/ said in the past they certainly don't represent my views or ideas.

Anyway next time you get a chance ask any good WA marine scientist about no take zones and ask them if they are need in WA or not especially the ones managing the metro.I know what the response is, so why are you/ they not supporting them.Why cant Recfishwest come up with their own management plan for these areas, put them on the table before anyone else, get the upper hand, instead of fighting and fighting wasting valuable recovery time, we all know whats going on , you do, you agreed in the last post, why should it be left up to CALM. take the initiative beat them at their own game be all good for the fish

I will have a crack at the ones that you haven't comment on

Who thinks that closing areas without properly managing the excessive fishing pressures will not cause the fished areas to get much worse? No if this is Metro based the grounds are hammered to death anyway, closing 10% of the ocean off in this region can only be a good thing, same example as i gave before Terry, we have cray fisherman who drop pots, they drop, the recs ping the spots, there isn't any ground out there that wouldn't of been fished

Who thinks marine park planning and management of fisheries should be coordinated, not done in isolation and ignoring the other as is done in WA at present? I do.

Who says the management of WA fisheries is okay and does not need to change? Not me, so don't imply that I do and get sidetracked onto arguing why.

Who says marine protected areas don't have benefits and a place? Not me, so ditto.

Who thinks that sustainability is a serious issue? Hopefully everyone because I certainly say that, so don't say I'm ignoring it.

Who says we have to learn from, and use the experience of overseas areas? Hopefully everyone because I certainly say that.

Who says we should just follow the lead of overseas areas without making some attempt to adapt it for Western Australian conditions? Another application of those important "role of science" principles.

Who thinks that the Perth metro area (at least Moore River to Port Bouvard) and areas near population centres and access points need much tighter fisheries management including closed areas? I do.

Who thinks the State 3 nautical mile boundary for Marine Parks covers enough of the area where action is needed? Ningaloo works fine, capes to capes would be fine , Rotto would fine, Monties would be fine Rowley would be fine. There is a reason why its 3 nautical miles Terry its called shallow water structure, mostly where young guns grow up like a nursery ground or kindy if you would like. they grow up and get pushed away

Who thinks that some authorities sometimes take the easy copout way of banning something rather than doing the harder job of managing it properly?.
Well to use your analogy in a perfect world yes. but that isn't going to happen is it.Next best thing is too lock the joint up plus my kids need a better school and my nanny needs a hip replacement

Who thinks it's easy to get a representative opinion from recreational anglers? Give examples if you do.
Yep Recfishwest should send me a questionnaire I tick the boxes that I want representing on

Who thinks people should take every possible opportunity to educate recreational anglers about all the issues - including the cumulative impact each of their individual, possibly little bit of fishing might be having?. (Edited 2:30 pm to make is clearer I mean each individual's effect)
Fark no. as a great man once said to me, legislate eradicate, education does jack, force them by law, hell give them a licence for free, and they will stuff up . take the sucker away from them just like a car licence

Who thinks that recreational anglers are sometimes a "soft target" when it comes to closing off areas and their views are not known or are not taken into account? (note the word sometimes)No because the so called Representatives haven't really got in touch with the masses,after asking the question to many of people, most can see why closed areas are supported and needed, remember that questionnaire thing

Why is the measure of conservation only the percentage of totally closed (no take) areas?.because they have to be big enough to work, every scientist will say they need to be of certain size to function properly,

Who thinks that the large areas of remote WA coastline and ocean (inaccessible to recreational anglers) are important for biodiversity conservation? Yes of course they are,

Why isn't there some recognition of areas where there is little take? Who's harvesting there and affecting anything and responsible? = Commercial (and illegal overseas fishing in the north.)
Gee Terry please tell me where there would be little take from anywhere in WA besides a closed area, i am thinking but cant think of one.

gee that was a long post I cant read that again myself

Wally

Posts: 489

Date Joined: 11/08/05

More answers showing statements are not right.

Mon, 2006-11-13 07:09

Wally

You said I am "justifying the fight or your/ our rights"? I challenged you to put up and show where I have posted about rights, so you change tack and now say "you and every other knocker has to fight every proposal put forward..."

You haven't said where I've used the word "rights". Are you doing the usual of not saying anything now because you have been challenged to put up, and instead have ignored that because you can't justify what you said earlier?

So here's another challenge for you to justify what you say. Which other FISHERIES management proposal have I "fought"? Come on, give one example. CALM (now DEC) say very clearly marine protected areas are NOT for fisheries management, so don't bother listing those, anyway see later.

You seem to have a selective or short memory, Wally. Have you forgotten the help I gave you with and support for your (and Garry's) Zone 5 metro management proposals?? Remember what I wrote and posted and publicised and copied and distributed in http://www.aaawa.iinet.net.au/ManagementPerthMetro.html and I wrote all of that. Have you forgotten what I did for the Pink Snapper Cockburn Sound closure?

Or are you trying to mislead the readers again by saying I fight EVERYTHING??.

You say "..ask any good WA marine scientist about no take zones and ask them if they are need in WA or not especially the ones managing the metro.... why are you/ they not supporting them"

I do support sanctuary zones in the right places for the right reasons, which includes protecting resident and demersal species. Trouble is, there haven't been any decent ones in the metro area. I objected to SOME of the Rottnest sanctuary zone proposals because as you yourself said they don't need to stop shore based angling for pelagics, (herring, salmon etc) and that's what I objected to.

I do not have any problems with the Shoalwater Islands sanctuary zones, except the Point Peron one because that was not proposed by the advisory committee and there are no details - it's "just sign this blank cheque for the Minister."

I don't have any problems with most of the sanctuary zones and options in the Capes proposals, with the exception of one of the options for Busselton Jetty and one of the options for Cape Naturaliste.

But I don't take the blind "accept anything even if the 'justification' is full of holes, and it restricts some things for no obvious benefit" approach you have adopted.

Which part of my statements "Perth Metro needs much tighter fisheries management including closed areas to protect the Jewie" Signed TerryF." and "needs much tighter fisheries management including closed areas" do you not understand.?

In one post you say "all the details should be left to people who are actually getting paid to do it, like fisheries WA" but in another post you say "why cant ... come up with their own management plan for these areas." You can't have it BOTH ways. I'd be schizophrenic if I tried to do both of those completely opposite things you demand.

As you well know, Fisheries do have Metro Management on the go (but slowly it seems), and it IS being left up to them - so far.

You demand "show me one Marine park/ no take zone/ FHPA that you or Recfishwest have supported....." Well you'll find more than one on the RFW website. Each of these 7 examples are RFW comments referring to a specific no take/sanctuary zone. I'll leave it to you to find out which Marine Parks these are in.

1. "Recfishwest supports this zone." That's one example - one is all you asked for, but I'll give you several more.

2. "... is in general agreement on the need for a sanctuary zone...."

3. "in general agrees with the sanctuary zoning for.... We point out that the proposed sanctuary zone is relatively accessible, and utilized by both shore-based and boating public." Interesting, that one, the area is used by both shore based and boating fishermen, yet Recfishwest supports the no take / sanctuary zone there.

4. "RFW believes the uniqueness of the marine life and habitat in this area would be quite useful as a scientific reference point making a strong case for sanctuary zoning of the area. We consider that a case can be made for enlarging this zone to include the entire........."

Gosh, that's RFW agreeing and even suggesting the sanctuary zone should be LARGER! What a shock that must be!!! (to the people who claim they ALWAYS oppose sanctuary zones....)

5. "Recfishwest generally agrees with sanctuary zoning for this area..... Recreational fishing does occur to a reasonable extent in this area..."

Gosh, that's a case where RFW hasn't stood up for the "rights" of existing recreational anglers and has let an area be put into a sanctuary zone without objecting....

6. "RFW...supports protecting the....."

7. "RFW supports this zoning. We believe a case can be made for making this zone larger."

You say "there is a reason why its 3 nautical miles Terry its called shallow water structure..." Sorry , that's wrong. It's 3NM because that's where WA State jurisdiction ends. Fisheries are a special case where the Commonwealth has given WA jurisdiction of most (but not all) fisheries in Commonwealth waters. And 3NM is not enough for Metro - your own Zone 5 paper says so.

The question was "who thinks it's easy..." Your answer "should send me a questionnaire I tick the boxes..." misses the point. Send to who? How many? Who has a list of "ordinary" recreational anglers and addresses?. And remember each letter costs a 50c stamp plus the contents plus the labour, so each letter costs about $1, and how many returns are needed? 600,000 anglers and how many separate issues per year adds up to an awful lot of dollars.

Glad to see that you think that "education does jack." Seems you're saying "keep them in the dark and be a dictator." Oh, and you're extending this topic to licenses now. Well before you misrepresent me on that too, I am personally in favour of salt water licenses, but this Gov't was elected with a policy of no salt water licenses. and the opposition had the same policy, so I know when it's not very productive to beat my head against something. Next election - who knows?.

So you agree the large areas of remote WA coastline and ocean (inaccessible to recreational anglers) are important for biodiversity conservation, but only commercial fishermen operate there so any proposal for closure of big areas wouldn't worry most recreational anglers. So why isn't DEC proposing closures of some of these areas to increase the percentage of WA closed areas? So instead of saying "only 2.5% of WA waters" (or what ever the figure is), they could say 15%. Not that that would stop the foreign fishermen....

I have to comment on part of Jamie's post "..left to Fisheries WA it would work out like Jurien Bay mate where the lobster boys were still allowed to pot everywhere.." It was the original advisory committee and CALM and MPRA and the Gov't who ALL caved in to the Rock Lobster people, yet put restrictions on the soft targets of recreational angler. They don't even have the zones which would let them assess what impact that approach has. I'm on the current 2006 Jurien Bay Marine Park Community Advisory Committee and that's been a topic.

Dept of Fisheries don't always get much public say in Marine Parks, example they were gagged and ignored on Ninglaoo, including attacks in Parliament by the Greens for daring to say publicly some snippets of their advice on the usefulness of the Ningaloo zones. But hell, what would the Dept of Fisheries Research scientists know about fish which would qualify them to comment on local fish issues? Least that's what it seems the gags implied. Or could it have been that the Fisheries advice didn't fit what the others wanted to hear?

TerryF
=====

Beavering away in the background......

Ewan's picture

Posts: 271

Date Joined: 15/05/06

Some quick points...

Mon, 2006-11-13 13:39

I dont have time to respond as I'd like to to lots of the above, but I will over the next day or so...

Terry I'll reiterate that I didnt mean to question your personal integrity or anything there, likewise anyone else posting here - its been a good discussion and hopefully shows that there is a diversity of opinion and that quite a few of us are not happy with the general direction of RecFishWest policies and comments on this particular issue. Again I'll say, and others here have said, that I respect and appreciate much of the work RFW does for fishing AND sustainability in general in WA. But opposition to no-take zones at Rotto as the prime example (whatever the policies say in detail - read Frank Prokops media release - it makes it clear that RFW opposes any no-take zones at Rotto) is one where they are off the mark and even in the wider policy view of RFW that I've quoted above, many of us believe that our percieved 'rights' (again Wally said it best) to fish should come secondary to the needs to conserve not only fish stocks but the rest of the ecosystem that sustains them.

I hope I can summarise the general view that I have been on about...Many of us are not overly concerned at the loss of amenity to fisherpeople when sat against the needs of the fish we like to catch, especially at the levels of percieved loss as they stand. RFW state that they are concerned about the cumulative loss of areas available to fishing - if that loss was anywhere near approaching the 20-50% of all inshore waters closed to fishing that Scaly mentioned above then perhaps there would be a case for that. But as it stands at something like 3%, put in over the last 10 years or so, I would suggest that you could relax on that battlefront for another 20 years at least. The priority at the moment should be for getting that percentage (read:area) UP to where the best available science (yes conservation science) says it needs to be, at the minimum, for long-term sustainance of fish and their habitats. This number changes but whatever it is, it is much bigger than the current state of things in WA. As RecFishers, we have the opportunity to be at the forefront of this, and recognise that, as fishers, we target the same areas that are of high conservation value. Our flexibility in these debates is essential if the desired outcome is to be achieved. If we lobby to have the no-take areas reduced, this will decrease their effectiveness. The end result would be that we would have an area closed to fishing that isnt even acheiving its goal - we lose and the environment loses. Or we lobby to have none at all as in the case at Rotto, and risk losing a jewel to the burden of fishing pressure that comes with being off the coast of a capital city. Other factors also need to be addressed such as commercial fishing activities (a particular bee in my bonnet and perhaps another thread topic), industry pressures etc.

I understand the fishing for pelagics thing in these areas. I havent yet had the good fortune to have a crack at spaniards off Rotto in the CHicken Run (Gull I hope you are reading this and get the hint), so personally i am distanced from the impacts of this one. Just a point to think about...we have to remember the inter-connectedness of the marine environment. If we highlight an area of high value to be conserved, it is typically going to about the habitat on the bottom of that area. The habitat on the bottom is invariably linked to what happens above. A school of mackies or salmon feeding on a school of herring or mulies will result in a shower of debris below it. Scales, little chunks of fish, poo from the big fish etc. If you have been, well, potentially dumb enough to poke your head under water around a bait ball (considering what tends to swim around them!!!) that is being chopped up, you would see how this happens. In places where aggregations of pelagics may be recurrent over time, or even permanent, this periodic influx of nutrients into that system could have impacts on what is there and its survival against other pressures. Little fish, and bigger ones like pinkies etc hang out underneath such activity and get the scraps. I dont remember the exact term for this (periodic replenishment or something like that?), but I think this is recognised as being an important part of ecosystem function and success.
As i said I dont know how the run out there works, how much fish are taken out etc, but I imagine it would get trolled quite a bit. I think that intensive trolling would have substantial impacts on the normal activity of these pelagics regardless of whether they get caught, especially if bait schools get broken up by boats going through them etc - anyone ever seen a school sound when you get too close? I suspect I may be off the mark on this one, I dont know how big an area it is, the density of fish, density of boats etc, so such impacts may be irrelevant - but I just wanted to point out that pelagic and benthic systems are not necessarily exclusive. Again we might highlight the need to scientifically determine this type of thing! Another point would be that in the absence of information on spawning, recruitment etc, so maybe the next best thing is to conserve fish aggregation areas.

The link I provided above to the FRDC study in the Recherche was mainly to highlight the fact that an expensive, and intensive study of an area like the Recherche, which was targeted at the link between fish and their habitats still doesnt tell us most of what we would need to know in order to manage the fishery properly. Marine science is very time-consuming and expensive and requires specialist skills - we can not make the argument that there isnt enough science to prove that we need to make X or Y areas no-take zones because there probably never will be - we need to put them in the places we think are the best, based on best available knowledge, and make them sufficiently large enough to do their job - if we need to err on one side, they should be bigger - not negotiate them to be smaller or non-existant due to a loss of amenity. This is becoming critical in the face of all the pressures the environment faces - this is our little chunk of the problem. We are not being vilified or betrayed by the establishment of no-take zones, we should be flexible about this issue. Yes, we should be focussing on inequalities in management plans, where we are impacted relatively 'more' than other sectors (commercial fishing, industry etc) - but with a view to even out the balance by scoring more concessions on their part, not reducing our own. It should be about getting the best thing for the fish, not the fishers. Because the fish support the fishers!

If nothing else, I hope that this discussion and others in other places would show RFW that many people dont agree with their general (perhaps percieved) line on these issues - regardless of the specifics, there is a perception amongst us that RFW does not represent our views on, particularly, Rotto no-takes. The general public and most recfishers are not going to read every policy that RFW writes - they will read what Frank Prokop says in the paper or news and make up their minds based only on that. We are very interested to see that RFW as the peak 'representative' body is really representing, and not leading the recfishing 'movement' in a direction we dont want it to go, in the interests of protecting the very thing that we are on about! So debating it here and in other places is all well and good, but the varying opinions and the support for them should all be noted and included in future policy direction decisions. We would hope that all this discussion is not for nothing and is not wasted time.

speaking of time, mine is up will have to come back to it later.

Ewan

Jamie Chester's picture

Posts: 66

Date Joined: 12/11/06

If you are so distanced from

Mon, 2006-11-13 16:05

If you are so distanced from the closures off West End Ewan (as you said) what makes you think you have the right to comment on it with such vehemence??

And if it wasn't for recfishwest chances are you would NEVER the get the opportunity to fish it ------- ever.

As for the interconnectedness etc etc -- thats drawing a very long bow - especially for the Rotto areas which are ineffective piece meal closures more to do with resource re-allocation rather than fish stock management tools.

Roll-your-own SZs are a dangerous precedent Ewan - believe - and they erode peoples rights without any gain for the fish stocks as a whole.

Theres a thread on the Wangler site in the Fisheries Management section at the moment that you might want to read if you want to understand why recfishwest has to take the approach they do - ie fight fire with fire. Have a read.

www.accessantennas.com.au

Posts: 22

Date Joined: 04/05/06

I'd say it's more of a case

Mon, 2006-11-13 16:13

I'd say it's more of a case of there is a perception amongst very few that are not happy with the direction of RFW on this one issue and when it comes to the current Rotto proposal, RFW are right on the mark. It wouldn't take much for the RIA to gather major support from the recreational sector, but unfortunately the idealogues aren't interested in anything that varies slightly from their vision of what a MPA should be.

"if that loss was anywhere near approaching the 20-50% of all inshore waters closed to fishing that Scaly mentioned above then perhaps there would be a case for that."

"The priority at the moment should be for getting that percentage (read:area) UP to where the best available science (yes conservation science) says it needs to be, at the minimum, for long-term sustainance of fish and their habitats."

These two statements seem to contradict each other and although you try to present a case for non-trolling, it is specious at best unless you wish to also ban all forms of boating and diving within the marine park.

Posts: 116

Date Joined: 13/09/06

If you wish to throw it back

Mon, 2006-11-13 17:13

If you wish to throw it back at me terry thats fine, alls good if you want a pat on the back ( again) for helping to save spawning pinkies, well I tip my hat to ya, and have said thanks to your face and shook your hand before, it was a concentrated effort by a handful that got it approved not just you, if ya want more, there is a automatic back patter on the back of my Ute, works well when no one will give you a pat on the back.

As for Zone 5, We have always public stated others get paid to do what we did and yes this includes RFW ( why didn't they do it), We got abused by the executive director of RFW on Wangler for being naive ,and throwing friendly hand grenades, because we cared about the metro fishery don't forget the comment about damaging recreational fishing, what because we aren't sheep. we didn't follow the party line. Fark me damaging recreational fishing. I still cant believe he said that and I have to say has scared me , it wasn't until there was a bit of support that he did an about face and supported zone 5 on principle. ( on farking principle) ( insert finger here), The naive bit come from the 3 nm around rotto to Terry, from the horses mouth, in actual fact he said No take Zones don't work because they cant be policed, a long liner could come in and wipe the joint out in one night, again blame the bloody pro's

RFW or fisheries can do what they want with Zone 5 take all the glory mate, call it another name just bloody well do it thats the recognizing it deserves, means someone else gives a toss, honestly Terry we don't give a sh&t take that to the bank,and hopefully it doesn't take as long as the Jewie work shop minutes.
Again, zone 5 thanks for the help from the bottom of my heart and I really do mean this, even to quote you would you like me to put it in writing

Even thou yes it is their ( CALM) jurisdiction, every Muppet in the science world knows how important the inshore reefs are, This is where the majority of immature demersals spend a lot of their growing life, hell its a dog eat dog world out there too long without structure to hide behind, means instant death. Rotto is a classic example of this, even thou you agree, i get mixed responses from others within RFW and this isn't just me who thinks this way.

Anyway I apologize for not reading your links and those Recfishwest statements I get. bit confusing and contradicting at times . thats why I dont read them, just saw red

Ewen i said you were a breath of fresh air, can I take that back, We need to have a beer mate, scaly/ James you are included as well. Down at freo fishing boat harbor and we will see what damage the bloody pro's are doing. you can see for yourself, hell ya may even have a beer with a few. and no, there is no malice just want you guys to open your eyes a little and see the real world and not just tackle shop gossip.Not to mention reading a a few fisheries papers and you will find yes the bloody pro's in some fisheries have the upper hand, but there is also a lot of fisheries that the bloody recs' have over the bloody pro's. I have always said we are all to blame fix the bloody fishery

And my head hurts again

Wally

Ewan's picture

Posts: 271

Date Joined: 15/05/06

Rights

Mon, 2006-11-13 17:39

As a western australian fisherman I would think I have the right to comment on the position of the peak body that is supposed to represent me. I also have the right to comment on something that has an impact on my future use of the area, even if I dont fish it now.

Now, personally I could possibly be swayed into agreeing that these Rotto closures could effectively allow for pelagic fishing, given that as far as we know, the pelagic fish we are likely to catch there dont spawn etc there. But then again we need to remember that these no-take zones are not exclusively for the protection of fish stocks - they are not just a fishery management tool (as you guys also point out) - as you say, if they were, they would be totally ineffective as they dont address fishing in other areas etc etc. They are there to protect the whole system which includes the whole water column. Perhaps the "ineffective piecemeal measures" need to be expanded to achieve their goals? I cant believe that RFW would encourage that. I imagine that they are as small as they are to appease us recfishers. Or do we just have none and let it go at the mercy of fishing regulations? In this scenario we would have it good for as long as the remaining stocks/environmental quality lasts.

Like I said, no-take zones are not just there for fish stocks - they are there representing an understanding that all the components of an ecosystem are important to its overall functioning. Thus if we want to protect the high biodiversity values (including fish size and abundance) of an area with everything we've got, that should include all the fish and all the habitat there. The "inter-connectedness" might be a long bow, but it is only one of many long bows that add up to making these very complex systems function as they do.

My whole argument is that our 'rights' as you guys like to call them NEED to be eroded - preferably through a change in attitudes but if not then through legislation. Our 'rights' to fish for what we like where we like to have put us in this position now, with a need to conserve before it collapses (further). There are only going to be more people and more boats.
I am not trying to present a case for non-trolling specifically - but just for the sake of argument i would think that many boats trolling, targeting pelagic fish in an area would have more of an impact than occasional boats moving through the area on their way somewhere else or for diving. The Executive Director of RecFishWest said in a media statement that RFW wanted to hold the government to its promise not to allow no-take zones at rotto. This is the public face of RFWs policies here. It puts political pressure on the Govt to abolish ANY no-take zones at Rotto - and this would have flow-on effects on other areas. THIS IS THE POINT. THIS DOES NOT REPRESENT THE OPINION OF ALOT OF RECFISHERS, INCLUDING THOSE WHO WOULD LIKE TROLLING TO BE ALLOWED HERE, BUT RESPECT THE BENTHIC PROTECTION ANGLE - how many? I couldnt say. But at least several who have been posting on this page and at a glance on the wangler site too. And other people I talk to - occasional fisherpeople, mum and dad and the kids with k-mart specials and the like. Representation is another issue that we can talk about. Perhaps next time.

The two statements I made that Scaly refers to are not contradictory. One is putting the policy position of RFW in relation to the 'cumulative loss of amenity' to recfishers in the context of the reality of the situation as it stands. There is relatively buggerall no-take in WA, so perhaps we dont need to fight for our 'rights' just yet. The other statement reflects the established need for more no-take in order to preserve what we have for the future, and that we as recfishers have part of the responsibility to bear for this. The 'cumulative loss of amenity' is exactly one part of what is required to address the whole problem, in conjunction with all the other methods that Terry (especially) writes about - integrated fishery management and the like...

A lack of time frustrates me but probably saves this thread from another essay! For now...

Ewan

Posts: 22

Date Joined: 04/05/06

"There is relatively

Mon, 2006-11-13 18:18

"There is relatively buggerall no-take in WA, so perhaps we dont need to fight for our 'rights' just yet."

And there is the crux of the issue. I believe we do, and if you examine the whole package of science, evidence, politics and propaganda involved, from both sides of the debate- you would too although 'fighting for rights' is the wrong analogy

"It puts political pressure on the Govt to abolish ANY no-take zones at Rotto - and this would have flow-on effects on other areas."

How come the RIA isn't on your radar Ewen? You could complain to them that they could have had comprehensive, adequate and representative areas around Rotto but refused to entertain alternatives ideas.

Posts: 489

Date Joined: 11/08/05

Thanks Wally

Mon, 2006-11-13 20:30

Wally

Thanks for the thanks. I wasn't looking for more thanks for things I do, once is quite enough for me and you've given me more than that. I am more than happy doing things in the background and let others who work get credit.

I just didn't want other people to believe what you said about me justifying/fighting for "rights" and opposing EVERYTHING, coz that is not true.

Rights. The Gov't election policy said "Following on from the 2002 Coolangatta Fisheries Conference, explore the opportunities for applying "right to fish" principles contained in the Coolangatta Communique within the recreational fisheries and IFM context in Western Australia." See page 11 of Election Policy http://www.wa.alp.org.au/download.html?filename=electionpolicy/planforfisheries.pdf and Coolangatta Workshop Communiqué http://www.daffa.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/5778/coolangatta_communique.pdf

Maybe when that is done, then everyone will be able to read what their "rights" are, and what their "rights" are not - but that will not stop the arguments.

Ewan. There are 2 current existing sanctuary zones at Rottnest. The Gov't policy statement to "Reaffirm its commitment not to support bans on fishing at Rottnest Island." is poorly worded (I think) because Geoff Gallop's earlier statements were about not supporting any MORE fishing restrictions, and was not about the existing ones, as I recall. I cannot imagine him agreeing to lift the existing restrictions.

Those statements followed the debacle of the first DRAFT ROTTNEST ISLAND MANAGEMENT PLAN 2002 – 2007 when RIA put out proposals for closed areas without ANY prior consultation. See http://archives.westernangler.com.au/cgi-bin/dcboard/dcboard.pl?az=read_count&om=221&forum=DCForumID3 I have a copy of that early draft RIA proposal in PDF format if anyone wants it, coz it's not on the Rottnest website anymore. That's worth a read for background to the 2006 proposals.

So when RFW reminded the Premier of that election promise, it would have been in the clear knowledge of it meaning "no MORE fishing restrictions," although that is not obvious in either of the documents. Another failure to get a 100% mark in the pressure of preparing media statements to meet media deadlines, and a missing word in a 15 page policy doc.

You have focussed on the ONE word "vilify" so many times, but you have ignored the other parts of that same sentence in http://www.recfishwest.org.au/MediaStateRottnest.htm which says "The Premier must make the Rottnest Island Authority work with recreational fishers..... Then we can have a plan of which we can all be proud."

Recreational anglers would have worked with the Rottnest Island Authority and committees to come up with a plan which would have the good conservation outcomes, would have included restrictions on fishing aimed at the real needs for tougher management, and one which recreational anglers agreed with. But they weren't given a chance to demonstrate that cooperation, which now leaves them open to all sorts of accusations.

Instead the RIA had only one tool they were prepared to consider, that was use no take areas, and refused to engage or consult with fishing peak bodies, recreational or commercial, and refused to consider other options. For example a total ban on the take of Blue Groper (the main species used as "justification" for the closed areas) in the entire Rottnest Marine Reserve and wider areas around Rottnest which would have given a much better outcome for that species.

That Gov't election policy also said "Review processes around the establishment of marine reserves and bioregional marine planning in consultation with ALL fisheries stakeholders and the wider community." I wonder what percentage mark the RIA would get for their efforts so far? Still the review of the public comments gives the RIA a chance to do things in a way which will get both better outcomes for conservation and more acceptance. Will they take that chance? Waiting, waiting.....

TerryF
=====

Beavering away in the background.....

Jamie Chester's picture

Posts: 66

Date Joined: 12/11/06

Terry is right on the money

Tue, 2006-11-14 09:48

Terry you are right on the money in your response.

I would love to see blue groper/and even dhuies/ protected throughout much of the Rotto area.

Recfishwest as i see it has more of a problem with the process of SZ implementation rather than sz's as such. DON"T GET THE TWO CONFUSED!!

Let's face it - attitudes are changing in regards to taking shissenloads of fish - the dinosaurs that still want to do that are dying out slowly. Mind you we should still be able to catch a feed of fish - that shouldn't be left the sole domain of the pros.

And Wally I am aware of (and have had many beers with) alot of pros and their attitudes. There are bad and good out there. And you cant deny that they put pressure on fish stocks as well.

Like I said - a sanctuary zone 5 mile wide and out to the 200 metres isobath - that would be superb and would really make a difference.

There are alot of confused greenies out there Ewan. We MUST ensure a sustainable future. And the SZ sagas that are going on at the moment are less to do with that than what you realise.

www.accessantennas.com.au

Posts: 116

Date Joined: 13/09/06

[quote]Like I said - a

Tue, 2006-11-14 10:28

Quote:
Like I said - a sanctuary zone 5 mile wide and out to the 200 metres isobath - that would be superb and would really make a difference.[quote/]

yep got a chubby when kletch wrote that up on Wangler. James ask frank what he thinks about this fantastic idea, even better put it in writing and submit it too the board to pursue.

And James I never said the commercial boys weren't a part of the problem, remember we all are to blame just bloody fix it comment. And since the season starts tommoz i thought it would be a great opportunity to go and catch out all these bloody pro's taking all the spawning pinks hanging on the fringe of the Cockburn closures, all the tackle shops seem to spread around this gossip this time of year.

Hey mate can you sort me out with a digi antenna for my new HD TV

Wally

spanish-hunter's picture

Posts: 15

Date Joined: 09/11/09

nah its a load of crap guys.

Tue, 2009-11-10 19:21

nah its a load of crap guys. It is just a way of ppl trynna stop fishin as much and also it sais us and canadian. didnt say squat bout aussie waters.