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Advisory Issued Ahead Of Lobster Season

By DENISE MAYCOCK

Tribune Freeport Reporter

dmaycock@tribunemedia.net

AS THE lobster season approaches, fisheries officials are keeping an eye out for people who are intent on violating the law concerning the illegal possession of fresh or live crawfish before the season opens next month.

The Department of Marine Resources has issued an advisory to fishermen and the public that the crawfish season runs from August 1 to March 31, 2016. Anyone found or caught with live or fresh crawfish before August will be subject to penalties under the Fisheries Act.

Clement Campbell, Superintendent in the Department of Marine Resources in Freeport, Grand Bahama, was concerned that some people were already illegally harvesting crawfish. He said that he had observed vendors selling lobster dinners during the opening of the Goombay Summer Festival on at Taino Beach on July 2.

Mr Campbell warned that lobster caught on July 31 is considered illegal. “I want to advise the public, anyone that is caught selling lobster on Taino Beach for the remainder of this year’s Goombay Festival (July 16, 23 and 30) will be arrested. Do not bring lobster to the festival to sell,” he said. He believes that crawfish should be seasonal in local restaurants and with food vendors and that it will deter illegal harvesting of crawfish.

When the season opens, people who are caught with undersized and egg-bearing crawfish would be in violation of the law.

The department said fishers must take note that the minimum size limit for whole crawfish is three and a quarter inches carapace length. The minimum legal size limit on the crawfish tail is five and a half inches length. All fishers capturing crawfish are required to have a measuring gauge to ensure that they are able to confirm full compliance with the legal size requirements.

People wishing to use an air compressor to harvest marine resources must first obtain a permit from the Department of Marine Resources. Applicants must provide proof of Bahamian citizenship and that they have received adequate training in safely diving while using compressed air.

The air compressor permit allows the device to be used only at depths between 30 feet and 60 feet and its legal use is to assist in the harvesting of marine resources from August 1 to March 31 inclusive.

The public is advised to report all suspected violations to the Department of Marine Resources at 393-1014, 393-1015 or 393-1777. All violators of the Fisheries Regulations can expect to be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.

Comments

lonetagger 5 years, 9 months ago

Bahamian fishermen are one problem, but all your readers would like to know what government and the Defense Force are doing to stop the devastation wrought by the Dominicans.

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Hogfish 5 years, 9 months ago

So what did the good superintendent do about it when he saw them serving the lobster on 1st July??!

I agree 100% - if we seriously want to protect this industry then lobster needs to be banned also in restaurants during the closed season.

We also need a closed season for CONCH !

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SP 5 years, 9 months ago

.............................................. STFU Clement Campbell .............................................

Dominican fisherman are literally catching millions of pounds of crawfish 365 days of the year all over the Bahamas with impunity and this jackass is running around threatening locals just trying to make ends meet!

NOBODY will take these clowns serious.

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asiseeit 5 years, 9 months ago

What about those that are using air compressors straight through. I saw some guys diving off Rose Island yesterday with one. Go to the Montague or any ramp around Nassau and the boats coming in will have compressors on them. These jack legs do not enforce the laws of the land. I could pull in at least three boats a day if I was a law officer but we know that our lazy ass patrol units only harass people and do not ENFORCE THE LAW. They do not even need to patrol, just sit at the ramps and let them come to you. Think you idiots could handle that?

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BiminiHomeowner 5 years, 9 months ago

Go on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, etc and search the hashtags & keywords for various fisheries resources in The Bahamas (ie. lobster, mutton snapper, etc.) and you will find OBSCENE amounts of poaching being blatantly celebrated by American visitors.

These poachers should be fined and banned from returning.

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SP 5 years, 9 months ago

The law only apply to Bahamians

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Sickened 5 years, 9 months ago

So what happened to those guys on Taino beach. Did government decide then and there that punishment was too harsh for these poor Bahamians trying to make a buck? Is government going to take the crawfish from them and then pay them for their loss of income during the festival?

Our defense force is the biggest joke on the high seas. They pull boats with families over and check for life vests and guns but they let their friends with 30 people on a thirty foot go fast boat, speeding up and down the harbour, go buy without a second look.

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