Recfishwest’s position on the best use of salmon in WA:
All fish in WA should be managed to provide the best return to the West Australian public.
For salmon, this means tourism, recreation and a quality seafood product. Tens of thousands of West Aussies travel to our state’s South-west each year to catch salmon. It’s a West Australian tradition; and these quality fishing experiences must be maintained.
Using iconic sportfish solely as a bait product is not acceptable.
Catching this premier sportfish and sending them straight to the bait market is a practice that should not be happening in 2019. This includes the use of salmon cutlets, fillets, or trunks as bait. Salmon heads make excellent bait once the fillets have been used for human consumption. The same principle can be applied to iconic sportfish such as barramundi, marlin or a range of other species.
Measures should be taken to reduce current conflicts on beaches.
We continue to receive reports from anglers about conflict between sectors on our beaches. All user groups have a moral obligation to respect others on the beach. We ask all beach anglers to respect the activities of commercial salmon operations. However, please be aware that the fisheries legislation does not give any one sector the right to fish over the top of the other. It also doesn’t give any particular priority access to a particular beach or to individual schools of salmon.
In representing the interests of beach anglers, Recfishwest is calling for an immediate reduction in conflict during peak periods such as weekends and public holidays.
All fish stocks in WA must have clear and transparent management objectives.
Fisheries management objectives are a set of goals or aspirations which guide resource use in line with community values, benefits and expectations. Good management objectives are created through consultation and discussion with all stakeholders.
The current management system for salmon does not recognise or integrate social and economic dimensions. Nor does it protect the interest of the thousands of WA anglers who chase salmon on our beaches each year. The popularity of salmon along with a clear mandate from our members creates a strong bias for action and we will not stop advocating until your interests are recognised.
We are seeking a dedicated process to establish clear objectives for the future of salmon in WA so that the value and benefits for all users is recognised and clearly articulated in Government policy.
It must be noted that this is not a sustainability issue, salmon stocks are currently very healthy and it is these high abundances that are underpinning the great fishing we are experiencing along out coastline including a regular salmon run into Perth local waters.