Scalefish Fishery


The commercial scalefish fishery is a multi-species and multi-gear fishery predominantly made up of small owner operators. 

Vessels vary in size and type and different fishing gears are used. Examples include gillnets, hook and line, longlines, spears, drop lines, squid jigs, automatic squid jig machines, fish traps, purse seine nets, beach seine nets, dipnets, octopus pots and Danish seine. 

Live banded morwong

Managing the fishery 

The scalefish fishery is managed under the Living Marine Resources Management Act 1995 and the Fisheries (Scalefish) Rules 2015. The mackerel fishery is managed under the Fisheries (Mackerel) Rules 2019

The scalefish fishery is controlled through capped licence numbers, closed seasons and gear restrictions. There are also minimum and maximum size limits and trip limits. Banded morwong on the East Coast are controlled by a quota management system. Catch limits are in place for recreational fishers

Commercial licences 

To catch and sell scalefish species from Tasmanian waters, fishers require specific scalefish licences. The platform for a commercial scalefish licence package is a fishing licence (vessel). 

A fishing licence (rock lobster) is also classed as a scalefish licence due to the amount of scalefish gear rock lobster fishers are permitted to use. Rock lobster fishers have catch limits on certain species - see the Fisheries (Scalefish) Rules 2015 and the Operational Guide f​or the Commercial Scalefish Fishery.

For information about commercial scalefish licence types and number, please see the document below. 


​There are areas around Tasmania where no fishing or limited fishing using specific types of fishing gear is allowed. There areas include Marine Parks, Marine Nature Reserves and Shark Refuge Areas. 

Go to the Marine Reserve​ page for more information about State Marine Nature Reserves and Commonwealth Marine Parks. 

Go to the Shark Refuge Areas page for more information about area descriptions and maps. 

Go to the Net and Line Restrictions page for the descriptions and maps on no netting and setline areas. 

Banded Morwong area management information can be found on the Map of the Commercial Banded Morwong Fishery page. ​

Operational areas of the Danish Seine Fishery can be found on the Areas of the Danish Seine Fishery page. 

More information

 2024 Operational Guide for the commmercial Scalefish Fishery 

​​​ 2023 Operational​ Guide for the commercial Banded Morwong Fishery

Tasmanian Scalefish Fishery Assessment 2019/20

Commonwealth Small Pelagic Fishery

  • Banded Morwong Fishery
    Information about the commercial Banded Morwong Fishery
  • Danish Seine Fishery
    Information about the Tasmanian Danish Seine Fishery.
  • Southern Calamari Fishery
    Information about the Southern Calamari Fishery, including current management issues.
  • Mackerel Fishery
    The Tasmanian Mackerel Fishery is managed under the Fisheries (Mackerel) Rules 2019. Purse seining is the method of capture with no board trawling permitted in any State waters.


Commercial Scalefish Management​
Level 3, 134 Macquarie Street
GPO Box 44
Phone: 0475 635 841


Fishwatch Report illegal fishing

0427 655 557

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Contact us

Recreational Fishing

Level 3, 134 Macquarie St

Hobart TAS 7000

Phone: (03) 6165 3233, 1300 720 647


Commercial Fisheries

Level 3, 134 Macquarie St

GPO Box 44

Phone: (03) 6165 3000, 1300 368 550


Commercial Fisheries Licensing

Level 1, 134 Macquarie St

GPO Box 44

Phone: (03) 6165 3000, 1300 368 550