The yellowtail kingfish have made their annual spring migration back to Kellidie Bay to spawn in its protected, shallow waters.
“The seasonal phenomena is a sight to behold, with hundreds of large kingfish cruising through the shallow waters and occasionally breaking the surface,” Natural Resources Eyre Peninsula Senior Compliance Officer David Wilkins said.
“Kellidie Bay is a great place to try and hook a big kingfish, but it’s important for anglers to know that the eastern end of the bay was made a sanctuary zone in 2014 to protect this unique spawning ground.
“Fishers may continue to fish for kingfish in Kellidie Bay, just not within the sanctuary zone. This allows the kingfish to go about their breeding activity with less disturbance.
“Fishers also need to be aware that if they hook a fish up outside the sanctuary zone, they are not permitted to follow it into the sanctuary zone to land it, as no part of the fishing activity can occur within the zone”.
Mr Wilkins said the sanctuary zone was chosen, based on community advice, to protect this special area, with the mudflats and intertidal seagrass beds being important habitat for an array of fish species including whiting, flathead and flounder. Dumpling squid, octopus and prawns use these bay and eagle rays have been seen courting and birthing in the shallows.
“Natural Resources Eyre Peninsula rangers regularly patrol the sanctuary zone and the local community feels very strongly about people abiding by the sanctuary zone rules”
“People are encouraged to enter the sanctuary zone in a boat, anchor up and observe and admire the diverse marine life in this area, but please leave the fishing to outside the sanctuary zone.
“By protecting this important breeding ground, we’re helping to ensure Kellidie Bay remains a clean, green, healthy productive environment, and that benefits everyone, including anglers.”