Yabby (freshwater)


Common name/sYabby
Scientific nameCherax spp.
Minimum legal size no minimum
Bag limit

A maximum of 20 litres not exceeding 150 whole yabbies


5 litres of yabby meat in any form not exceeding 150 tails (including claws and other parts)

Possession limit

There is a statewide possession limit for yabbies. This is the maximum number of yabbies that a person can possess at any one time anywhere in Victoria (including your home):

A maximum of 60 litres not exceeding 400 whole yabbies


10 litres of yabby meat in any form not exceeding 400 tails (including claw and other parts)

Additional information

You may not possess female yabbies with eggs, or with young attached, or remove eggs from a yabby.

You must return females in berry (carrying eggs) or carrying young to the water immediately and without further harm.

Collection methods for yabbies

You may collect yabbies:

  • by using open top lift nets in private waters such as farm dams
  • by using up to 10 baited lines (no hooks)
  • by using up to 2 labelled bait traps
  • by using up to 5 labelled hoop nets in the streams, tributaries and impoundments of the following waters:
    • Carrol's Creek
    • Ryans Creek
    • Wodonga Creek
    • The Ovens River system
    • The Tarra River system
    • The Latrobe River system
    • The Kiewa River system
    • The Mitta Mitta River system (excluding Lake Dartmouth)
    • The Glenelg River system (excluding Rocklands Reservoir)
    • The Goulburn River system (excluding Lake Eildon)
    • Waranga Basin
    • These river systems contain lots of Murray spiny crays or protected spiny cray species. In light of this, only hoop nets can be used to collect yabbies. Open top lift nets can't be used in the above systems because they will catch spiny crays and that is not what they were intended for.
  • by using a combined total of 10 labelled nets (either hoop nets or open top lift nets) in all other inland waters, including Lake Eildon, Rocklands Reservoir and Lake Dartmouth.

The number, size and shape of the equipment used is important. It is also important that your equipment is appropriately labelled. Click here for a summary of the fishing gear that can legally be used in Victoria, and how to use it.

Permitted collection methods for yabbies

The use of opera house nets (pictured right) is prohibited in, on or next to Victorian public waters. As of 1 July 2019, the use of opera house nets will also be prohibited on private water such as farm dams.

In 2018 we embarked on a net swap program where anglers could exchange up to 3 opera house nets for new open top lift nets. Click here for more information on this program.