Rock Lobster Season Shortened

Cape Town – Tuesday, 11 November 2014: The Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (DAFF) wishes to announce the total allowable catch (TAC) and the 2014/15 recreational fishing season for west coast rock lobster (WCRL).

The DAFF and the WCRL-sector have committed themselves to rebuild the 2006 biomass of male west coast rock lobster above the 75 mm carapace length minimum size limit, by 35% by 2021.

To achieve the targeted objective of the recovery plan, the global TAC for the 2014/2015 fishing season has been determined at 1 801 tons which translates to a 16.79% global reduction when compared with the global TAC for the 2013/2014 fishing season.

  • The 2014/15 global TAC has been apportioned as follow:
  • Commercial Fishing (Offshore): 1120.25 tons (previously 1356.56 tons);
  • Commercial Fishing (Nearshore): 376.10 tons (previously 451 tons);
  • Subsistence (Interim Relief Measure) Fishing: 235.45 tons (previously 276 tons);  and
  • Recreational Fishing: 69.20 tons (previously 83.5 tons)

The 2014/15 season for recreational fishing of WCRL will open on Sunday, 15 November 2014, and will close on Monday, 6 April 2014.

The 2014/15 WCRL recreational fishing effort will be restricted to 21 days and will be split as follow:

  • Fishing allowed from 15 November 2014 to 16 November 2014 (2 days)
  • No fishing allowed from 17 November 2014 until 15 December 2014
  • Fishing allowed from 16 December 2014 to 16 December 2014 (1 day)
  • No fishing allowed from 17 December 2014 until 19 December 2014
  • Fishing allowed from 20 December 2014 to 2 January 2015 (14 days)
  • No fishing allowed from 3 January 2015 until 2 April 2015
  • Fishing allowed from 3 April 2015 to 6 April 2015 (4 days)

No recreational fishing of WCRL be allowed in the area between a line in the north (330°true bearing) drawn from the co-ordinate 33º15’00”S and 18º07’00”E in respect of Zone C and as a southern boundary the northern beacon MB1 of the WCRL sanctuary at Melkbos Point, which is also known as Area 7 (Dassen Island).

Attention is also drawn to Regulation 51, issued under the Marine Living Resources Act 18 of 1998 (MLRA), which provides that only persons over the age of 12 years may obtain from any authorized office, a recreational fishing permit to engage in fishing, collecting, keeping, controlling, landing or transporting of, or to be in possession of not more than four WCRL per day subject to the payment of R94 per permit (R7 application fee and R87 permit fee) as determined by the Minister under section 25 of the MLRA and published under Government Notice No. 795 in Government Gazette No. 33518 of 10 September 2010. Permits are valid for the entire recreational fishing season.

Fishing times for WCRL will be from 08h00 until 16h00 and the bag limit is four per person per day and the size restriction is 80 millimetres carapace length.

No person catching WCRL with a recreational permit may sell his/her catch and any WCRL caught, collected or transported must be kept in a whole state.

A maximum of 20 WCRL’s may be transported per day on condition that all the persons who caught such WCRL’s are present in the vehicle, vessel or aircraft during transportation and that such persons are in possession of recreational WCRL permits.

For more information and/or comment, please contact

Lionel Adendorf, Director: Communication Services (Fisheries), on +27 21 402 3702 or +27 61 494 1105.