Fishing gear for fresh waters

This section applies to freshwater fishing gear only. For information on tidal fishing gear, see Fishing gear for tidal waters .

Line drawing of fishing lines

Set lines must have tags showing the owner's name and address.

Why are there restrictions on fishing gear?

Restrictions to fishing gear protect fish stocks from overfishing.

General conditions

While fishing in fresh water a person must not possess or use at one time more than four canister traps, four collapsible traps, four dillies, four funnel traps or four round traps, or more than four of these traps in any combination.

No age limit applies to fishing in Queensland but children should be of an age where they can be responsible for the use of their own fishing gear. In freshwater areas, fish may only be caught using:

  • a fishing line that consists of a hand-held line with or without a pole, reel or rod
  • a trap that can be a canister trap, collapsible trap, dilly trap, funnel trap or round trap
  • a scoop or dip net (cast nets and bait nets cannot be used)
  • a set line.

Marking traps and set lines

Anyone who uses a trap or set line for freshwater fishing must have a tag on the trap or set line showing the owner´s surname and address. If the trap is not fixed to something stationary above the water level while being used, it must have a light coloured float attached.

The float must feature the owner´s first name and surname and be at least 15 cm in each of its dimensions. A two or three-litre milk container may be used as a float. A set line must be attached to a stationary object such as a branch, wooden stake or boat.

Fishing lines

A person must not set a fishing line as a cross-line or use more than six fishing lines or set lines alone or in combination. Only one hook or an artificial fly or lure can be attached to a fishing line. Anyone using a set line must be no more than 200 m from the line.

Line drawing of fishing reels, canister trap and scoop net

Freshwater fishing gear: Reels, scoop net and canister trap.

Scoop or dip nets

A scoop or dip net must not exceed 1 m in any dimension, with a handle no longer than 2.5 m and a mesh size of no more than 25 mm.

Line drawing of a collapsible fishing trap

Collapsible trap.

Canister traps

A canister trap must be no longer than 60 cm and no more than 50 cm in width, height or diameter. The trap must be open at one end. The width, height or diameter of the trap-measured anywhere along its length-must not be more than the width, height or diameter of the trap´s open end. If the trap does not have a mesh made of rigid material, the size of the mesh must be no more than 25 mm.

Line drawing of a collapsible fishing trap

Collapsible trap

Collapsible traps

A collapsible trap must be made of rigid material with one or more collapsible sides.

Line drawing of a funnel trap

Funnel trap.

Dilly nets

A dilly net must have a diameter of no more than 125 cm and a mesh size of no more than 25 mm.

Funnel traps

A funnel trap must be no longer than 70 cm or no more than 50 cm in width or height. It must have no more than four entrances, with each hole measuring no more than 10 cm in any dimension.

The trap entrance must be made of rigid material. If the trap does not have a mesh made of rigid material, the size of the mesh must be no more than 25 mm.

Line drawing of funnel (opera house) trap

Funnel (opera house) trap.

Round traps

In freshwater, round traps must be no longer than 70 cm in diameter or no more than 50 cm in height. Traps must have no more than four entrances; each hole must not have a diameter, height or width measuring more than 10 cm.
If the trap does not have a mesh made of rigid material, the size of the mesh must be no more than 25 mm.

Examples of prohibited fishing gear

  • Floatlines
  • All forms of nets except landing nets and scoop or dip nets
  • Fish traps
  • Drum nets
  • Cross-lines
  • Spears and spear guns

Related information

Last updated 13 March 2013