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Preserving our Blue Swimmer Crabs

Posted: 15th May 2011

New Rules To Protect Blue Swimmer Crab Stocks On The West Coast

The Minister for Fisheries has approved changes to recreational and commercial fishing rules as a precautionary measure to protect blue swimmer crab breeding stocks on the West Coast during a period of low recruitment.


Peel-Harvey Estuary closed season, 1 September to 31 October
Fishing for blue swimmer crabs is prohibited in the Peel Inlet and the channel entrance, Harvey Estuary and Dawesville Cut from 1 September – 31 October. The spring fishing closure protects crab breeding stocks, and allows female crabs to spawn before the fishery re-opens.

Cockburn Sound – closed season, 1 May to 14 December
Cockburn Sound is closed to all crab fishing during this period.


New Recreational Fishing from Boat Licence (RFBL)
From 2 March 2010 a RFBL is required to undertake any general fishing activity (including crabbing) conducted with the use of a powered boat anywhere in the State. If you are going to fish for crabs using a powered boat, at least one person on the boat will need a Recreational Fishing From Boat Licence (RFBL).
You will also need a RFBL for any activity where fish, crabs or shellfish are taken where a powered boat is used to reach the fishing location.

Daily bag and boat limits
Bag limit - 10 crabs per person per day
Boat limit - 20 crabs per powered boat when there are two or more people on-board holding Recreational Fishing from Boat Licences. If there is one person on-board holding a Recreational from Boat Licence, a boat limit of 10 applies (i.e. the daily bag limit of the person that has the licence).

Ban on prawn hand trawl (drag) nets – Due to the impact on juvenile crab stocks the use of hand trawl (drag) nets has been banned in all waters of the Leschenault and Peel-Harvey estuaries from 6 July 2007. This ban also applies to the Peel Estuary's tributaries, including the Serpentine and Murray rivers. Hand dip nets for school and king prawns can still be used.

Crabbing for Blue Swimmer Crabs in the West Coast Region download this document pdf [258k]
Crabbing for Blue Swimmer Crabs in the West Coast Region - Vietnamese download this document pdf [247k]
Recreational Fishing From Boat Licence
download this document pdf [270 k]
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