Sunfish Administration -
The AGM in October saw all existing Office Bearers & Management Committee re-elected. Bruce Alvey is the Chairman & Myself Deputy Chair & Secretary. Our State wide Memberships have been renewed & our finances are stable. Our application to Fisheries Queensland for funding to run an Angler Education Instructor course in February is still pending & the date will possibly have to be put back a month or so.
We are also investigating some type of association with the Qld Branch of 'Stop the Lockout' group.
A fishing policy document agreed to at the AGM was circulated with the AGM minutes. Please use this as a guide when making submissions to Fisheries Qld.
All our insurances have now been renewed for 2021/22 so Public Liability & Professional Indemnity cover is still valid.
Angler education & grants -
Our members are taking advantage of the Fisheries Qld Recreational Fishing Grants which have increased to $250.000 being available in the 2021-22 year. Some of our Members were successful last year & more are awaiting the decision on allocations for this round. I encourage you to apply otherwise this money may not be available next year. Just 'google' Queensland Fisheries Recreational Fishing Grants to get to the web page.
Most of the new Fisheries working groups have now met via computer links & the commercial harvest strategies now implemented which move the commercial catch to total allowable quotas (TAC’s) with some including Individual catch limits(ITQ’s). After representations to the Minister by Sunfish the Moreton Bay Working Group was to be reconvened to discuss resource allocation within Moreton Bay. Three months later there is still no sign of any meeting being arranged & it looks like another political promise 'shelved'. (Two & a half years since the last meeting)
Detailed communiques for the meetings are available on the QF website.
Animal Welfare Act.
The Animal Welfare Act is currently being revised & Sunfish has put in a submission as well as meeting with the Officers in person to express our views. NSW are also reviewing their Act & have already stated that live fish can be used for bait. There has been no progress information released to date.
Research Projects affecting Recreational fishing -
The recreational expenditure survey for recreational fishing has been completed .We also look forward to that outcome.
Our Scientific Officer is working on several 'Citizen Science' projects which are in varying stages of finalization. The main ones are concentrating on flathead spawning .The other concern is the 'saddleback deformity' occurring in bream at the rate of approx. 10%.The same deformity is now appearing in Snapper & it would be nice to know why. Apparently this is not a concern to Fisheries Queensland as they won’t support any research into the cause of the deformity.
National Matters -
The Australian National Fisheries Plan is out for comment on their web site. Mostly it deals with Commonwealth Fisheries but one recommendation is for a National Recreational Fishing License to be collected federally & disbursed to the States. Thank goodness it is only a proposal & the whole Plan will take 5 years to finalise. With a federal election looming now is the time to talk to your local Federal Members.
Wishing everyone a Happy Xmas & a Happy New Year from Sunfish Qld
David Bateman AM, Secretary Sunfish Qld. 1/12/2021
Note- Information contained in this newsletter is as accurate as possible as of this date.