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Changes to Recreational Fishing Rules
Written by QLD Government
Created / Updated on Tuesday 3rd of September 2019
Photos / Files Available
A number of changes have been made to Queensland fishing rules – these new rules commenced 1 September 2019.

Please note: Queensland Boating and Fisheries Patrol will not immediately issue fines for non-compliance with these changes. For the fist few months, the focus will be on education and awareness.

Size limits

Pearl perch – increased from 35 cm to 38 cm

King threadfin – increased from 60 cm to 65 cm on the east coast

Mary River cod – increased from 50 cm to 60 cm

Murray cod – 110 cm maximum limit removed

Possession limits

Mud crab – reduced from 10 to 7

Boat limits for mud crab, prawns, snapper, black jewfish, barramundi, shark, Spanish mackerel, sea cucumber and tropical rock lobster – 2 times the possession limit

Pearl perch – reduced from 5 to 4

Tropical rocklobster – limit of 5 applies in all Queensland waters

Blue swimmer crab – reduced from no limit to 20

Mollusc and gastropod (including pipis) – reduced from 50 to 30

General limit of 20 for all species without a possession limit (excluding some bait species) – e.g. you can only have 20 butter bream in your possession, as this fish doesn’t have it’s own prescribed possession limit.

No limit for following bait species – southern herring, common hardyhead, Australian sardine, Australian anchovy, silver biddy, saltwater yabby, soldier crab and non-regulated worms

Limit of 50 for following bait species – mullet (excluding diamondscale, sea and freshwater mullet), cuttlefish or squid (excluding tiger squid), smooth-clawed rock crab and yellowtail pike

Hammerhead sharks and white teatfish – no take

Oysters (excluding pearl oysters) must be eaten on the spot where they are taken (pearl oysters can be taken away from the site – must be correct size)

Australian bass – increased from 2 to 5 in dams and weirs under the Stocked Impoundment Permit scheme Cribb Island worm (formerly known as blood worm) – limit of 50

Mary River cod – limit of 1 in stocked impoundments expanded to include Wyaralong Dam, Ewen Maddock Dam, Caboolture River Weir, Robina Lakes, Lake Kurwongbah, Enoggera Reservoir and Lake Manchester


Snapper and pearl perch seasonal closure – 15 July to 15 August each year

Closed waters prohibit take of black jewfish within 200 m from the Hay Point and Dalrymple Bay coal terminals

Standardised start and end times for most fishery closures – midnight to midnight

Tinana Creek and its tributaries upstream of Teddington Weir wall closed to all forms of fishing

Murray cod seasonal closure – 1 August to 31 October each year

Waters closed to line fishing (or possession of a fishing line) from 1 August to 31 October:
– Coomera River (upstream of defied boundary)
– Albert River (upstream of defied boundary)
– Running Creek
– Christmas Creek
– Stanley River (upstream of defied boundary)
– Mary River (upstream of defied boundary, excluding Baroon Pocket Dam, Borumba Dam and Lake MacDonald)


Recreational crab apparatus and freshwater traps must be marked with the surname and address of the person using the apparatus

Mulloway and scaly jewfish must be kept whole while on board a vessel

Black jewfish will become a no-take species for all sectors when the total allowable commercial catch is reached.

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