Herring stocks recovered thanks to WA fishers

Almost every west and south coast fisher can recall catching a herring and, for many youngsters, it’s the first fish they ever catch, while for others, herring is their go-to bread-and-butter fishing species.

“It’s herring fishing experiences like these enjoyed along the WA coast which make herring the most important recreational species there is,” Recfishwest CEO Dr Andrew Rowland said.

Yesterday, Recfishwest was pleased to see the latest fisheries scientific assessment show WA herring stocks have successfully recovered following management changes implemented in early 2015.

Happy days! Herring provide great fun for fishers of all ages.

Find the full assessment report on the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD) website.

What good fisheries management and stewardship can achieve

Almost seven years after the management changes were introduced, the scientific evidence of stock recovery is a testament to what good fisheries management and stewardship by fishers leads to.

At the time, fishers recognised a serious issue with the stock impacting the quality of fishing and this was confirmed by the stock assessment that followed.

And, although these impacts on the stock were chiefly environmentally-driven, the fishing community did what was needed and embraced the new rules in 2015 to help the stock get back on track.

Herring is the most important recreational species in the State, providing fantastic and memorable fishing experiences for tens of thousands of fishers.

Read the Fisheries Minister’s media release here.

“The announcement was very welcome and we want herring stocks to become increasingly healthy to ensure they are resilient to any future environmental challenges,” Dr Rowland said.

“This will maximise everyone’s chance of catching a herring whenever they go fishing for them — a management objective we are pleased to see has been confirmed by the Government’s commitment to prioritise ‘the use of herring for recreational fishing and for human consumption’.

“Recfishwest is looking forward to working with the Government to ensure future management of this highly important species can ensure WA families can continue to enjoy catching abundant herring, forever.”

Herring provide great fishing for a wide range of fishers, and can be caught in a variety of ways.