Spearfishing is a popular recreational activity in Australia, where many individuals engage in the sport as a way to catch fish or rock lobster. However, before you jump into the water with your spear gun and start hunting, it's important to understand the regulations surrounding spearfishing in Australia.
First and foremost, it's worth noting that spearfishing is legal in most parts of Australia, with the exception of some inland waters. However, there are age restrictions in place for those looking to engage in the sport.
Legal age for spearfishing…
In most states and territories in Australia, you must be at least 16 years of age to go spearfishing. However, in some regions, such as Western Australia, the age limit is 18. It's important to check with your local government authorities to ensure that you're complying with the correct age restrictions.
Additionally, if you're planning to spearfish in Australia, you'll need to adhere to size and bag limits for the species you're targeting. For example, the size limit for coral trout is 38 cm in Queensland, while in Western Australia, the minimum size limit for speared fish is 50 cm.
You'll also need to ensure that you have the correct spearfishing gear. This typically includes a spear gun, snorkel, mask, fins, catch bag, knife, float line with float and international code A (Alpha) dive flag. It’s important to invest in high-quality safety equipment, especially when diving in remote areas and if you're hunting in deep waters.
Larger inflatable surface buoys or floats with built in bags for safety gear make great spearfishing platforms and help secure your equipment. PLB or Personal location beacons, inflatable surface markers, signal mirrors and a mobile phone in a waterproof case are all great options for increasing diver safety.
Things to prepare before spearfishing
Another critical aspect of spearfishing is holding your breath. As with any water-based activity, safety should be a top priority, and it's crucial to practice safe diving techniques and never push yourself beyond your limits.
Freediving courses from basic beginner programs to advanced level courses are available from training agencies like SSI, PADI, AIDA and CMAS. It is important to undertake professional training for the level of diving you are undertaking and always follow safe freediving practices, remember to always freediving or spearfish with your buddy.
In conclusion, spearfishing is a popular recreational activity in Australia, but it's essential to understand the regulations surrounding the sport before you get started. With the correct gear, knowledge of size limits, and adherence to safety guidelines, spearfishing can be a rewarding and enjoyable pastime for individuals of the appropriate age.