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FRASER COAST Start of mullet season has an issue

July 1st, 2015

MIXED BAG-Tom Durbidge hauls in a catch of mullet. image www.fcci.com.au

COAST mullet fisherman Kevin Cannon’s small but experienced team has had a weather-delayed start to this year’s season.

Fraser Coast Chronicle has got to be one of the best provicial newspapers in Australia  without a doubt.

Fishermen to his north and south have had success but so far, this winter has only provided the Mudjimba-based veteran “a little hatful”.

The ocean temperature has yet to drop to the suitable 20-degree mark and south- westerly winds which he desires are yet to blow in.

Traditionally, early June is when mullet start running in beach gutters.

“It doesn’t really look like we are going to get a south- westerly for a couple of weeks,” Mr Cannon said.

“It’s just been a case of wait and see.”

He had heard of good hauls at Caloundra as well as Noosa but as yet, no luck in between.

Mr Cannon, 67, said his crew members were aged 66 and 65 with the youngest member about 45.

He has been walking the beaches with nets since the late ’50s but struggles to see how younger generations could take up the craft.

He said the possibility of laws changing or restrictions being added meant it was unlikely banks would loan the money needed to get started.

“There’s no certainty in it for the young fellows,” he said.

Queensland Boating and Fisheries Patrol district manager Greg Bowness said the traditional winter migration of the sea mullet provided commercial operators with an important opportunity and netting activity had already escalated.

“Seafood wholesalers should have a plentiful supply of fresh local mullet,” Mr Bowness said. “It is a commercially important species and although inspections show high levels of compliance with fisheries regulations, including fish size, licensing, net length and mesh size, QBFP will be in the region to monitor activity.”

Mr Bowness asked recreational fishers to allow commercial netters to conduct their activities safely during the mullet run by giving them room to operate.

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Henry Sapiecha

*PS…These are hard working people. Give them a break.

Dumping warning for processor spells doom to fishery unless a solution is found

July 1st, 2015

LNP candidate for Hinkler Keith Pitt and senate candidate Matthew Kanavan talk with Paul Hodson from Urangan Fisheries in front of a tray of ocean king prawns from the Coral Sea.image www.fcci.com.au

LNP candidate for Hinkler Keith Pitt and senate candidate Matthew Kanavan talk with Paul Hodson from Urangan Fisheries in front of a tray of ocean king prawns from the Coral Sea.

A WARNING issued to a Urangan seafood processor for scallop disposal into the ocean is writing on the wall, says State Member for Hervey Bay Ted Sorensen.

Mr Sorensen said the company, which wanted to remain anonymous, had been warned by the Queensland Department of Environment and Heritage for breaching a little-known law which made it an offence to dump animal matter into the ocean.

He was concerned the warning pre-empted regulation changes that would make it illegal to dispose of natural seafood by-products into the Great Sandy Strait.

“If seafood processing companies are going to be fined for the likes of disposing scallop shells into the ocean, it means that such companies may have to move their processing activities to Asia,” he said.

“A loss of such industry could spell over a hundred job losses for Hervey Bay.”

The warned company had put scallop shells in Urangan Harbour for the past 40 years in accordance with state laws, Mr Sorensen said.

“Red tape like this is killing business,” he said.

“If one trawler operator spends about $200,000 on fuel a month, imagine what this means for the local economy if they can no longer operate out of Hervey Bay.”

Mr Sorensen wanted Fraser Coast seafood businesses that have been warned to contact him on 4124 1386.

OOO

Henry Sapiecha