Wake Up Brisbane
by
Dave "Nugget" Downie

I’m about to give recreational anglers and the law making authorities a blast with regard to the practice and regulations on catching mangrove jacks. Before I spit the dummy, lets look at the big picture.
Our premier freshwater sportfish is the Australian bass and there is no doubt that fishing clubs and stocking groups are enthusiastically promoting catch and release of this species. The recreational fishing authorities have, as a result, imposed a bag limit of two bass per person. Two bass per person removes the species from the ‘food’ list and solidly implants it as a sportfish. Without the effort of these groups of anglers, particularly considering the increased angling pressure combined with their inability to breed in impoundment’s, bass numbers would decline dramatically. A big pat on the back is due to those responsible for bass stocking as well as to the authorities for the introduction of the bag limit.
 
 
 
Now lets relate that philosophy to our premier estuary sportfish the mangrove jack.
No bag limit, no stocking facilities.
I was disappointed to see one angler with five dead mangrove jacks on a recent TV fishing show.

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Wake up Brisbane, if we don’t take urgent action there will be none left to catch.
The national growth of sportfishing which prizes species such as jacks, combined with almost no restrictive regulations, will bring about the demise of mangrove jacks in our estuaries unless urgent action is taken.
Ok, I accept that a bag limit of two jacks in north Queensland would be equivalent to a bag limit of two bream to us. But the fact remains that unless immediate action is taken to restrict the number of Jacks caught and kept by unthinking southern Queensland anglers, the numbers will dramatically decline.

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