skip to content
Government of Western Australia - Department of Fisheries
​A magnificent western Australian salmon making for happy memories for this young fisher - caught safely off a southern beach, it was handled carefully and returned to fight another day. Photo: courtesy of Recfishwest
Monday 15 April 2019

Fish safely and sustainably this Easter

Whether it’s doing battle with hard-fighting salmon, pulling up a hefty dhuie, or just snaffling a few tasty crabs or herring, we hope you enjoy WA’s fantastic recreational fishing opportunities this Easter.

We urge you, though, to make sure you stick to the rules so there will be fish for the future for everyone to enjoy – but above all we want you to put your safety first when fishing, because no fish is worth risking your life for.

So if you’re chasing Western Australian salmon, keep the sand between your toes rather than fishing off potentially treacherous rocks.

You’ll often have a better chance of hooking up with one of these fabulous sport fish from the beach anyway, as the schools move along sandy gutters chasing herring in the surf zone on their annual migratory spawning run.

If you are going to fish from the rocks, though, make sure you gear up appropriately wearing rock boots and a Type 1 life jacket and follow the rock fishing safety tips on Recfishwest’s Fish and Survive website.

Ensure you check weather and swell conditions if you’re heading out on a boat again wearing a Type 1 lifejacket and having in date flares and EPIRBs on board and other safety equipment in case you do get into trouble out on the water.

Let someone know of your planned trip before you head out and use your on board radio to log on and off  with Sea Rescue.

If you’re fishing for demersal finfish – we urge you to stop fishing once you’ve reached your bag limit and not to practice ‘catch and release’ fishing for these species.

Demersals generally don’t go back well due to a range of factors and this type of fishing can put unnecessary pressure on stocks.

To give demersals the best chance of being released safely – bring the fish up slowly to reduce the effects of barotrauma, handle the fish with wet hands and lay it gently on a brag mat or a wet towel to unhook it, before using a release weight to return it to its seafloor habitat.

Remind yourself of size and bag limits for blue swimmer crab stocks  and the bag limit for Australian herring.

You should be able to take enough of these tasty, popular species for a feed for you and your family remaining well within your bag limit.

With one in four Western Australians fishing recreationally, the rules are there to ensure our precious aquatic resources remain sustainable.

By sticking to the rules you can help ensure recreational fishing in WA remains some of the best in the world.

For more information see our recreational fishing rules.

You can also download our recreational fishing guide.


Last modified: 16/04/2019 1:23 PM

© All contents copyright Government of Western Australia. All rights reserved. ABN: 18 951 343 745


© This work is copyright. You may display, print or reproduce this material only in an unaltered format for your personal or non-commercial use, or for use within your organisation. Apart from any use permitted under the Copyright Act 1968, all other rights are reserved.


The information and advice provided by the Department of Fisheries website is made in good faith and is from sources believed to be reliable and accurate at the time of release onto the website. Changes in circumstances after a document is placed on the website may affect the accuracy of the information. Full disclaimer details are available at