Support all fishers
In answering John Osborne’s letter (Magnet, 2/8) about their club unable to catch any fish one morning last week, I could fill a page, but will try and make this short.
Regarding salmon, it is commonly known the fish migrate in May/June north to warmer waters. Scattered fish are still left behind – 30 ton are currently working Pambula River mouth, try around there. Even on your local fishing report they show salmon are still around, please read it. And in previous reports in the last two months, your club states that salmon are going “great guns” and plentiful.
Beach seine is restricted with summer weekend closures, area closures and licence restrictions. I can only imagine your horror when there were 10 salmon boats working Eden-Merimbula waters and supplying the Eden cannery. Cannery has closed and we now only have one small purse seine boat and two very small beach seiners working part time. They are restricted also in amounts they can sell now. And South Australia also has a healthy net fishery for salmon, so do your homework.
After seeing thousands of tons of salmon migrate through here this year, as in every year, I’m sure they will be back for you.
As far as stopping commercial fishing in so-called tourist sensitive areas, Merimbula lake has been closed to commercial fishing for over 50 years, as well as other areas with limited licences issued. We need commercial fishing to supply our cities as well as our local area!
I can imagine the tourists when they can’t order fresh fish and chips from the local shop, order their fish dish from the clubs, or a lobster from Wheelers. Don’t you think this would disadvantage the area, both for tourists and locals alike?
Commercial fishermen contribute to the fabric of our local area, supplying jobs for crew, fuel purchases, freight, packing and general family living. The industry is under so many regulations that people don’t realise how tightly regulated it actually is.
Think for the long term, support your local fishermen, work with them, eat at the clubs and support your town.
Julie Fourter, Eden
‘Fished out’ a cop out
Regarding John Osborne’s letter, “Fishing under threat” (Magnet 2/8), I pondered whether it actually deserved a response? Yep it did…
I would like to bring to your attention that commercially fishing salmon on the east coast has been considered by Department of Primary Industries as sustainable in these catch areas. What do they know? You may well ask, how can a commercial fisher go out for the day’s catch, and by the way no barbecue after it, can fail to return with a catch just like you the amateur? To just say it’s simple, “it’s fished out” is a cop out!
I have gone from an amateur/commercial/amateur fisher person over the past 30 years in Eden and have fished right up and down the coast of NSW. Some days bag limits achieved, others nothing! To say there are no fish anymore made me cringe, as if I were a keen angler from another town and read this article I would bypass Merimbula and go to Eden where commercial fishers and amateurs co-exist and normally bag a good feed of fish.
These commercial fishers supply bait for local industry, they supply bait for amateurs, they buy fuel all year round and shop in the local area spending every dollar in our towns 52 weeks of the year. They have extended families who all do the same. It’s a selfish act to only think of our area and waters just for tourism and amateurs.
If your livelyhood was being threatened by ill-informed people, what sort of a response would you give? You are using tourism to fight your battle – I know a lot of tourists that come to Eden to buy their commercially caught seafood every year because unlike yourself they don’t fish. Maybe grab some binoculars and cast a little further out into the patch!