coral trout 7 closure dates coral reef fin fish
Photo: Mati Bats

Future closure dates set for coral reef fin fish

FISHERS planning to go reef fishing can make plans well in advance after long-term closure dates were set for coral reef fin fish.

Minister for Agricultural Industry Development and Fisheries Mark Furner recently announced the dates for coral reef fin fish closed seasons for 2019 to 2023. “Setting the closure dates for the next five years will provide certainty for fishers,” Mr Furner said. “Commercial fishers and tourism-based charter operators who make a living and employ Queenslanders through reef fishing, as well as recreational anglers, will all be able to plan their fishing trips ahead of time.”

The closure dates are:

Year  Closure 1 Closure 2
2019 25 to 29 October 24 to 28 November
2020 14 to 18 October 12 to 16 November
2021 3 to 7 October 2 to 6 November
2022 22 to 26 October 21 to 25 November
2023 12 to 16 October 10 to 14 November

Minister Furner said closed seasons prevent people from fishing at certain times of the year to protect fish species at vulnerable times in their life cycle.

“Closed seasons are important to allow stocks to replenish to ensure there are sustainable numbers of fish for current and future generations of Queenslanders to enjoy,” he said. “October and November have been shown scientifically to be the most effective months for closures to protect coral reef fin fish. The closure dates coincide with the new moon when coral reef fin fish species such as emperors, cods, groupers, coral trout and tropical snapper aggregate to spawn.”

Minister Furner reminded fishers of the upcoming closures for coral reef fin fish from 6-10 October and 5-9 November 2018. The closures are in place from the northern tip of Cape York to Bundaberg in the south (the southern boundary is at latitude 24º50’S). The eastern boundary of the closure is similar to the eastern boundary of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park.

For more information, visit, call 13 25 23 or download the free ‘Qld Fishing’ app from Apple and Google app stores.

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