Queensland – Spanish Mackerel Fishery


AFTA Members have reached out over their concerns in the direction the QLD Government is taking with the Spanish Mackerel Stock Assessment and the potential impacts on our industry.

AFTA want to assure members and rec fishers alike that AFTA has been on the front foot on this issue with Minister Mark Furner commencing with meetings at the AFTA Board in March 2020 then with AFTA President Michael Starkey, Qld Director Kord Luckus in May & July 2021.  In addition to this, there have been several video meetings and calls with Qld DAF.

A further meeting with Minister Mark Furner is to be held on 17th March 2022 at Parliament House, Brisbane where AFTA President, Michael Starkey, Qld Director, Kord Luckus and I will continue to pursue the Spanish Mackerel fishery issue as well as the Snapper, Nannygai and Legal fish length -v- fillet length concerns on behalf of our members.

We have been supported by the Boating Industry Association (BIA) & Game Fishing Association of Australia (GFAA) in this pursuit.

AFTA, BIA & GFAA come together, united in our concerns over the management of the fish stock 

AFTA’s position is that we do not accept any proposal to shut down or severely restrict fishing for Spanish Mackerel across the board.  Further discussion needs to be undertaken before any changes to:

* Season closures and in-particular those outside known and identified Spawning Aggregation Areas,

* Reductions in the Spanish Mackerel Total Allowable Catch (TAC),

* Bag limit reductions.

* increase the minimum size,

AFTA asks for the justification in the modelling and methodology of the stock assessments as we have continually questioned the modelling of the sustainable stock & capture rate by Qld Fisheries at all levels in Qld.

There is no doubt the government is manipulating their interpretation of the science (click here for Fisheries data) to meet what appears to be their end goal.

This attack on the Spanish Mackerel fishery will have drastic implications across the Queensland economy particularly in the tackle shop, marine retailers, boat dealers, takeaway shops, recreational, charter boats and professional fishing sectors.

Local working groups are trying to organise a meeting, we will supply details as they come to hand.