Commercial netting regulations in the Gippsland Lakes
There are two commercial fishery access licence classes authorised to use commercial fishing equipment, including nets, in the Gippsland Lakes (Figure 1).
Figure 1. Map of the Gippsland Lakes system showing commercial fishery reporting areas
Table 1 provides a summary of the regulations that apply to the use of commercial nets in the Gippsland Lakes by each licence class.
Gippsland Lakes Fishery Access Licence
Gippsland Lakes (Bait) Fishery Access Licence
Commercial nets used
Mesh net, seine net and stake net
Stake net (only if specified in the licence)
Use of commercial nets
A seine net and a mesh net cannot be used at the same time.
No more than 2200 metres of mesh net can be used.
All mesh nets must be marked with a white spherical float.
A seine net must not exceed 732 metres in length.
A stake net must not exceed 66 metres in length and must be attended at all times.
Only one seine net of 100 metres or less can be used at any one time.
Seine nets must be marked with an orange float.
Only one stake net of 66 metres or less can be used at any one time. The stake net must be attended at all times.
Restrictions on commercial fishing hours
Mesh and seine nets cannot be used between 12 noon on any Friday and ending one hour before sunset on the following Sunday.
Restrictions on areas of use of commercial nets
No commercial fishing equipment can be used in the North Arm of the Gippsland Lakes.
No commercial fishing equipment can be used within 30 metres of any public pier, jetty or breakwater.
A seine net can only be used at night (after sunset and before sunrise) between 1 May and 30 November from Sunday to Thursday.
Seine and mesh nets are not permitted to be used within 400 metres of the mouth of any river, stream or creek.
No commercial fishing equipment can be used in any area shown hatched on the maps in the Fisheries Regulations 2019.
Note: the use of a seine net of no more than 366 metres is permitted from the shore of Rigby Island.
No commercial fishing equipment can be used in or on the waters of any lagoon (including Victoria Lagoon), backwater or watercourse connected with McLennan Straits.
Mesh and stake nets cannot be used within 100 metres of any part of the low water mark between Shaving Point at Metung and 50 metres west of the mouth of Chinaman's Creek at Bancroft Bay.
The only commercial net type allowed to be used in Cunninghame Arm is a seine net not exceeding 732 metres in length.