Over two tons of blacktail confiscated from small fisher

The Ministry of Fisheries and Marines Resources (MFMR) confiscated close to two tons of blacktail, also known as dassie, which were caught using a beach treknet on Wednesday morning in the vicinity of Dolphin Beach near the bird island. No fine was issued though and nobody was arrested, contrary to social media reports.

According to Stanley Ndara, Chief Fisheries Inspector at the MFMR, the person responsible, Walvis Bay resident Walter Stemmet, is a right holder for mullet. “It is common practice to catch mullet from the shore using treknets. It is absolutely legal,” Ndara said. Mullet resorts under scale fisheries and currently there are less than ten right holders altogether.
“If you fish for mullet and see other species in the net and they constitute more than 20 % of the entire catch, you are supposed to release all the fish alive,” Ndara said. In this case all the fish were kept, even though the greater majority of fish were blacktail. Blacktail is usually caught using the rod and reel method from the shore. There were very few mullet in the net. “It is difficult to prove that the person specifically targeted other species, which is why we let him go. We confiscated all the fish though. That is his loss,” Ndara added.
According to the fisheries inspector he has never seen something like this happen ever. “We were very surprised to see so much blacktail in the net,” he said. Ndara added that “you cannot decide what goes into the net.”
The inspectors confiscated all the fish which will soon be donated to a welfare organisation. “We are in contact with the office of the Permanent Secretary to identify a welfare organisation as is usually the case. Nothing will go to waste,” he said.
Photos of the incident went viral on social media sites on Wednesday. Most reports accompanying the picture were false.

You must be logged in to post a comment Login