Recreational Fishing Licenses

recreational fishing licenses

Are you aware that recreational fishing licenses are required for a variety of different types of fishing activity?

Revenue raised from the implementation of recreational fishing licenses are assisting in the funding of fisheries research and stock assessments. This utilisation of funds raised are proving vital in helping us better manage and predict fish populations, migration patterns, response to over fishing etc, making it easier to ensure fishing for future generations.

What do I need a recreational fishing license for?

Fortunately, not ALL fishing actives require a recreational fishing licenses, including the most popular method of fishing: shore-based fishing.

The following activities are, however, subject to a license fee:

Recreational Fishing From a Boat (RFBL) $30

pink snapper

A license is required for all recreational fishing from a boat and for any land based fishing activity in which a boat was used for transportation (i.e., fishing from an island). You are exempt from requiring a RFBL if the fishing activity is one for which another license exists, such as diving or pulling pots for rock lobsters. You may fish from a boat without a RFBL if someone else on board has one, however, the bag limit is restricted to that of ONE person. Commercial charted fishing on a licensed fishing tour operator is exempt, you do NOT need a RFBL for this kind of activity. Non-powered vessels such as kayaks are exempt.

South-West Freshwater Angling $40

freshwater fishing


A freshwater angling license is required for all freshwater fishing south of Greenough. It is worth noting, that freshwater angling is a heavily managed fishing activity, with seasonal closures and a list of protected species. We strongly recommend you read the Department of Fisheries’ online pamphlet, available HERE. It is also worthwhile having a read up on the freshwater restocking programs run by Recfish West, HERE.

Net Fishing (haul, set and throw) $40

net fishing

Net fishing, including casted nets or haul nets, is heavily regulated, with many regional areas having a ban on all net fishing. Recreational haul and set netting is now prohibited in most waters of the North Coast Bioregion and set netting is prohibited in all ocean waters of WA with the exception of the Gascoyne Coast Bioregion. Recreational net fishing is only permitted in WA’s ocean and estuarine waters (i.e., tidal waters)– not in fresh water. Be sure to read up on the rules and regulations for net fishing before getting yourself in trouble.

Rock Lobster $40


The Western Rock Lobster is a quintessential icon of fishing in Western Australia, in both commercial and recreational terms. It is a highly important commercial fishery and a classic WA recreational past time. As a result, it has become one of the best managed fisheries in the world. A license is required for rock lobster fishing, regardless of fishing method (pots or hand caught) and regardless of wether or not you are fishing from the shore or from a boat. There have been rule changes regarding the lobster fisheries of WA (including the tropical lobster species), so be sure to READ THIS if you are unsure of the rules before you strap on your dive tanks.

Abalone $40


The recreational fishing method for abalone is primarily wading and snorkelling, with around 16,000 recreational licences issued each year. This makes abalone fishing is a very popular activity, and also a potentially dangerous one. With heavy restrictions and long closures, the few days where fishing is allowed can often fall on days with rough weather, therefore, caution is advised. The recreational catch is managed through size and bag limits, and it is strongly recommended that you know exactly what you are collecting when you go fishing for abalone.

Marron $40


The marron fishery is unique because it is purely for recreational fishers. Marron are endemic between Harvey and Albany. Fishing can be done in a variety of ways, however, special purpose traps are the most common method. A licence is required when fishing for marron. Fishers must be prepared to produce it if asked to by a Fisheries and Marine Officer.

How To Apply:

You can easily APPLY ONLINE for any of the above recreational fishing licenses. If you purchase multiple licenses, a 10% discount applies. The fees shown above are for the standard fees; there are concession fees available.

recreational fishing licenses