South West marron season kicks off

Mighty Marron: The smooth marron (cherax cainii), which is one of two types found in WA. Photo: DPIRD.

Mighty Marron: The smooth marron (cherax cainii), which is one of two types found in WA. Photo: DPIRD.

As one of the most highly anticipated seafood seasons of the South West begins, the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development reminds marroners to stick to the rules to ensure the future of the wild crustacean.

The season kicked off on January 8, and ending noon February 5, South West marroners will get a unique experience due to the natural distribution of marron limited to river systems and public dams in and between Harvey and Albany.

Popular marron fishing locations in South West WA include the irrigation dams around Harvey and Waroona and the Wellington Dam near Collie.

The Murray, Blackwood, Donnelly and Warren rivers also provide sought-after fishing locations along tree-lined waterways.

DPIRD aquatic resource management director Nathan Harrison reminded recreational fishers they must have a valid licence to take part in the season and abide by strict rules to ensure the sustainability of the ecosystem.

"The limited marron fishing season and management rules, such as permitted fishing gear, bag, size and possession limits make the WA's recreational marron fishery one of the most tightly managed recreational fisheries in the world," he said.

"These measures are required to ensure the unique experience of catching marron in the wild can continue now and into the future.

"Careful management of the marron fishery is required not just because of fishing pressure, but also changes in the physical environment including climate change and reduced rainfall and runoff into our rivers and dams."

The 2020 season follows a recent announcement by the state government allocating $500,000 from the Recreational Fishing Initiatives Fund to investigate the stocking of marron into South West dams and the enhancement of the marron habitat. The new stocking program will see 300,000 stocked over three years to help counter change impacts on marron's long-term viability. Details on where you can and can't fish for marron, permitted fishing gear and size, bag and possession limits for marron can be found at the Marron Recreational fishing guide 2020.