Coast KZN

16 Jan 2019

Clampdown on illegal activities

Tamlyn Jolly Zululand Observer Picture: Two east coast rock lobsters, commonly called crayfish, that were confiscated during the operation

“Numerous fines were issued by DAFF over the weekend ”

FINES amounting to R25 000 were issued over the weekend for various beach-related offences in the city, including beach driving and catching marine wildlife without permits.

In a joint operation, North Coast Anti-poaching (NCAP) and officials from the Department of Forestry and Fisheries (DAFF) targeted various locations along the coast north of Richards Bay. The main aim of the operation was to tackle the ongoing issues of illegal gill nets, the catching of east coast rock lobster, illegal beach driving and fishing without valid recreational fishing permits.

DAFF and NCAP members said the operation was a major success, with numerous fines being issued. The aim was not only to fine offenders, but also to educate the public on the correct ways of recreational angling and bait collection.

In another operation, a home-made poacher’s boat and 100m of gill nets were confiscated at Lake Mzingazi.

Important information
Shad season closes from 1 September to 30 November.

Only four shad per person can be caught at any given time.

There is a 300 mm minimum size limit and a valid recreational fishing licence is required.

East coast rock lobster season is closed from 15 October to the end of February.

Only eight lobsters can be caught at any given time and there is a minimum size limit of 65 mm.

A valid east coast rock lobster permit is required.

No east coast rock lobster berries (eggs) may be taken at any given time.

A licence is required to catch mole crab (sea lice), but a bag limit of 30 per licence holder applies.

A licence is required to catch mud crab, but a bag limit of six per licence holder and a 140 mm minimum size limit applies.

No crab with berries (eggs) may be taken.

A licence is required to pick rock, black, brown and ribbed mussels and a bag limit of 30 per licence holder applies.

No implement bigger than a 12mm blade may be used for removal.

A licence is required to catch mud prawn (cracker) and a bag limit of 50 per licence holder applies.