In exciting news for recfishers living in or visiting the Gascoyne, a new artificial reef funded through a $300,000 Recreational Fishing Initiatives Fund grant is to be deployed off the Carnarvon coast.
While an exact location for the reef will be determined in consultation with the Carnarvon fishing community it will be located far enough out to create exciting fishing opportunities, but close enough in for small boats and families to safely reach and enjoy.
“Members of the Carnarvon community are passionate about their fishing and for several years have been working hard to demonstrate why Carnarvon needs a reef and the value it would provide,” Recfishwest CEO Dr Andrew Rowland said today.
“It is great to see the government have listened to the community and committed to deliver new fishing experiences funded using recreational fishing licence fees.”
The Carnarvon reef will be WA’s eighth purpose-built artificial reef, with reefs already in place at Bunbury, Dunsborough, Rottnest Island, Mandurah, Exmouth, Esperance and another coming to Perth’s northern suburbs in early 2020.
“Positive fishing development projects are starting to mould the West Aussie rec fishing landscape,” Dr Rowland said.
“With six artificial reefs already in the water, the recent exciting announcement about the new State-wide FADs program and now Carnarvon’s artificial reef, recreational fishing in WA is going from strength to strength.”
The Carnarvon reef will provide local and visiting fishers with a great place to fish for local prized species.
Following the success of artificial reefs in other locations, the Carnarvon community are very excited about how good their fishing will be once this reef is in the water.
Today’s announcement is one we and the Carnarvon community will particularly welcome given the ongoing loss of access to the iconic Carnarvon jetty.
Fishing is part of the West Aussie lifestyle and part of our culture, and investments from State Government and Recfishwest into new fishing developments, such as artificial reefs enhance people’s fishing experiences, provide increased localised tourism and deliver economic benefits that all helps support healthy communities.
We are looking forward to beginning the public consultation and tender process for the design and construction of the reef which is due to begin in mid-2020.
Fisheries Minister Dave Kelly lauded the announcement and said it would benefit the Gascoyne recfishers.
“Artificial reefs not only provide great fishing opportunities, but also support local businesses and regional jobs by attracting more visitors to the area and increasing participation in recreational fishing,” he said.
Mining and Pastoral Region MLC Kyle McGinn hailed it a great initiative and “a huge asset to the Carnarvon community”.
“I have seen an artificial reef work extremely well in Exmouth and make a positive contribution to both locals and tourists,” he said.
Recfishwest looks forward to working with the local Carnarvon fishing community and continuing talks with Carnarvon recfishers to ensure an optimum location and layout for their reef.