"Brett Lye fishing off the Tuan pontoon. Photo: Stuart Fast

No Strait forward path for fishing zone

RECREATIONAL fishers have commented following the Chronicle's debate where Maryborough state election candidates were asked whether they supported commercial net fishing in the Great Sandy Strait.

Poona resident and recreational fisher Kerry Murphy is strongly opposed.

Poona resident and fisher, Kerry Murphy. Photo: Stuart Fast
Poona resident and fisher, Kerry Murphy. Photo: Stuart Fast

Mr Murphy said such fishing posed a threat to fish breeding grounds as the nets indiscriminately caught fish.

"There can be balance between commercial and recreational fishers, there is a whole ocean out there," he said.

"We've got to have commercial fishers, but they shouldn't be able to fish in the Sandy Strait."

One Nation Candidate for Maryborough Sharon Lohse supported commercial fishing in the Strait but Greens candidate Craig Armstrong did not.

Incumbent ALP member Bruce Saunders and LNP candidate Denis Chapman said they would gather more information before commenting.

Maryborough fisherman Brett Lye was on the fence about issue on Wednesday.

Mr Lye said commercial fishers made their living fishing in the area, supporting local co-ops and provided fresh seafood to the region.

He said the region needed fresh seafood and made the effort to support locals by purchasing his seafood from such businesses.

However, he also noted recreational fishing tourism opportunity, saying that if the waterway was overfished by commercial fishers, there wouldn't be much left.

"I think there is a balance between the two … I hope they can come to some kind of agreement between commercial and recreational fishers," he said.

The Australian Ocean King Prawn Company, which fishes in the area, has also commented. See the story here

The Seafood Industry Association was contacted for comment but declined.