Biotoxin PST sampling update

The entire Eastern Region (east of Point Sorell around to Whale Head) remains closed to rock lobster fishing due to elevated levels of biotoxins.
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Sampling and analysis of rock lobster and bivalve shellfish for paralytic shellfish toxins (PST) is being undertaken on an ongoing basis. Lobster samples have been collected from Flinders Island, Pirates Bay and Maria Island (see photo) since 11 November. Samples from other biotoxin zones in the Eastern Region are scheduled over the next few days. The samples are processed at the IMAS laboratory in Taroona before being dispatched to the national biotoxin accredited laboratory in Sydney for PST analysis.

The Department will be aiming to open the closed zones as soon as possible taking into account:

  • that PST levels are safe;
  • the need for an orderly opening; and
  • consideration of the impacts of concentrated fishing effort on rock lobster stocks should only certain zones in the Eastern Region be clear for opening.

Recreational and commercial fishers will be kept informed about any change in status for fishery zones. Fishers are encouraged to monitor the DPIPWE biotoxin webpage and the Fisheries Tasmania Facebook page.

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