The following gear may be used to take
southern rock lobster
(also referred to as crayfish) and eastern (green) rock lobster.
The licence holder must personally set and retrieve any rock lobster fishing gear. Another person can assist them if needed, for example, to set or haul the pot, including when the licence holder is operating the boat. The licence holder must be on board the boat, and is responsible for the gear and sorting the catch.
Rock lobster pot
You can only possess and use one recreational rock lobster pot (cray pot) on State waters. A person in charge of a boat must not allow more than 5 rock lobster pots to be on or used from their boat and all licensees must be present. The pot must comply with the following dimensions:
- No larger than 1250 mm x 1250 mm at base and 750 mm high;
- Escape gaps should be at least 57 mm high and the lower inside edge no more than 150 mm up from the floor of the pot;
- If there is only one escape gap, it must be at least 400 mm wide and if there are two, they must each be at least 200 mm wide;
- The hole in the middle of the neck of a rock lobster pot has to be large enough to allow a buoy of 200 mm in diameter to pass through it without touching the sides; and
- No objects, such as bait sticks, can obstruct the opening.
- You cannot leave your pot in the water for longer than 48 hours.
Rings and pots can be used from a boat being used by divers, however personal bag and possession limits apply to the total rock lobster taken by any method that day.
You cannot recreationally fish for rock lobster or have a recreational pot or ring on a commercial fishing trip.
Rock lobster rings
Rock lobster ring or hoop nets (see photo) can be used to take rock lobster.
- A licence is required, which allows you to possess and use up to 4 ring nets on state waters.
- A person in charge of a boat must not allow more than 20 rock lobster rings to be on or used from their boat and all licensees must be present.
A rock lobster ring or hoop must comply with the following dimensions:
- must be a single ring or hoop of no more than 1 metre in diameter, covered with mesh; and
- if left unattended, each ring must have a buoy attached marked with the licence number.
You can take rock lobster by SCUBA, surface air and snorkelling.
- The only aid that can be used for taking rock lobster is a gloved hand.
- Nooses, gaffs, nets, hooks and spears are not permitted for taking lobster.
- It is illegal to possess a noose on a boat unless it is being used for game fishing.
- Rings and pots may be used from a boat that is being used by divers.
Marking rock lobster gear
Rock lobster pots, caufs, unattended rings must be marked with a buoy that is:
- has only the licence number and 'P' if it is is a pot and 'R' if it is a ring clearly marked in figures not less than 70 mm high and 12 mm wide;
- at least 195mm in diameter at the widest point; and
- specifically designed as a buoy and floats on the surface of the water.
Additional buoys may be attached to improve visibility.
Lines and nets
It is illegal to take rock lobster by a hook and line, or a net.
Rock lobster caufs
A rock lobster cauf is a device for holding rock lobster in the water.
- A person may only use one cauf at a time.
- It must be marked with a yellow buoy.
- A cauf can be used by more than one licensed fisher but lobsters held in a shared cauf must be separated from other fishers' lobster into their own compartments.
- Each fisher must have their own yellow marker buoy marked with their recreational fishing licence number attached to their compartment of the cauf.
- All rock lobster in a fish cauf must be tail-clipped and count towards the fishers possession limit.
Aboriginal fishers are exempt from holding a fishing licence, but must comply with all other rules. Where rock lobster gear must be marked with a licence number, Aboriginal fishers should use the unique identifying code supplied to them by a recognised Aboriginal organisation. More information on
Lost, stolen or irretrievable rock lobster gear
If you leave your rock lobster pot in the water for longer than allowed due to bad weather, illness or theft, ring 1300 720 647 and provide them with your licence number.Cray pot illustration by Peter Gouldthorpe