1/59 FORSYTH ST., O’CONNOR, WA, 6163


Late last year, WA Fisheries checked out a number of recreational fishermen using haul and set nets on inland waters, and found a few gill nets with undersize mesh, despite their owners thinking their nets were compliant. The problem was tracked down to the way that net mesh size is measured. WA Fisheries measure the aperture size or the opening (see below), while manufacturers, net makers and distributors typically use the stretched distance between the middle of two adjacent knots.

This means some commonly used net sizes supplied by manufacturers are technically illegal, because of the small discrepancy between knot to knot length as opposed to the aperture size.

This is particularly relevant for the two smallest allowable mesh sizes of the standard 2”and 2 ½”mesh for coastal and inland waters respectively, since the manufacturers nets have aperture sizes of 48.8mm and 61.5mm, which is well below the 51mm and 63mm required in WA Fisheries regulations.

To get over this issue Crackpots now imports and supplies 2 1/8” and 2 9/16”mesh nets, which have apertures just a tad over the legal minimum size and meet WA Fisheries regulations. Just to complicate matters further, it’s worth remembering that over time the mesh size will tend to shrink a little, so it’s worth checking to see if your nets are compliant.

Gill net diagramIMG_1123

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