‘Stop this rot’ as call goes out for a ban on a ‘net loss’

NETTING: Cr Frank Pardon wants commercial takes on Noosa North Shore banned.
NETTING: Cr Frank Pardon wants commercial takes on Noosa North Shore banned. Brett Wortman

A DISGUSTED Councillor Frank Pardon has renewed his call for a ban on commercial fishing on Noosa North Shore after two separate incidents involving what he regards as overkill of local marine stocks.

One involves the ripping out of 30 tonnes of mullet from local waters two weekends ago, where Cr Pardon said the fish ended up being worthless because of the way the catch was handled.

The councillor said he saw the mullet in the nets on the Sunday and was told by an industry source that the 30-tonne catch was totally spoiled because of the amount of time it took to haul them in.

"I've got this straight from the horse's mouth - they were in the nets around 10 (pm Saturday) and they did not get the fish out until about 12 the next day."

He believed it was a combination of having too many fish in the nets and the incoming tide that led them to be crushed to the extent they had no scales left.

"These sort of netting practices are not sustainable, especially when you take them to the processor and the processor rejects them because they've been pulverised," Cr Pardon said.

"A friend of mine who was actually given some of these mullet said they were mush - they had not a scale on them."

And in another instance not related to the mullet catch, on the same weekend he alerted local fishing authorities to the illegal take of 700 pipis by a couple of persons in a four-wheel drive 12 km along Noosa North Shore.

The allowed limit for the popular food and bait is 50.

"My friend had driven up there and saw this happening and said Frank, 'what can I do about it?'," Cr Pardon said.

"When I arrived the fisheries patrol was there. They went north from there and got another lot so good on them for responding like that.

"They went up the beach and found another lot with too many pipis as well," Cr Pardon said.

The long-time advocate for commercial fishing licence buy-outs on the North Shore said he had spoken some weeks back to the Fisheries Minister John McVeigh concerning this issue and "told him I'll be back".

"I want a buy-out with compensation.

"No one's talking about kicking anyone out (without remuneration), but we didn't become a biosphere to do unsustainable practices," Cr Pardon said.

Topics:  noosa biosphere

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