Government controls and legislation for line fisheries

As a commercial line fisher you need to be aware of the relevant legislation and regulations. Line fishing regulations are found in the Fisheries Regulation 2008 and include:

  • closures during the spawning season for certain species (see coral reef fin fish example below)
  • a ban on taking certain species
  • restrictions on commercial boat size
  • restrictions on the number of hooks and lines
  • minimum and maximum legal sizes for fish
  • a commercial catch quota management scheme for coral reef fin fish and Spanish mackerel
  • possession limits for recreational fishers
  • zoning, with area closures or restrictions (under state and commonwealth marine parks legislation).

Closed season guidelines – coral reef fin fish

Below are legal guidelines that relate to coral reef fin fish spawning closures.

  • Notice must be given by midnight, prior to the start of the closure.
  • Your vessel must be in port for the purposes of unloading by 6am on the first day of the closure.
  • You can depart port for the fishing grounds during the closure but must not take or be in possession of coral reef fin fish during the closure period. This allows you to steam to fishing grounds so you can commence fishing as soon as the closure has ended.

Monitoring and reporting

Commercial fishers have a legal obligation to report information about their fishing activities in a compulsory daily logbook. All line fishers must contribute data about their day's catch, the location fished, the gear used and any interactions with species of conservation interest. Fisheries Queensland uses this data to assess and monitor the status of individual species and fisheries in Queensland.

Under Queensland fisheries legislation, people who commercially fish or buy coral reef fin fish or Spanish mackerel are required to meet additional catch reporting requirements.


Queensland's line fisheries operate in accordance with the Fisheries Act 1994.

Other relevant legislation includes:


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