NSW Ocean Hauling Fishery

Ocean hauling fishermen work from select NSW beaches to target up to 20 species of fish.

Ocean hauling has been operating since the late 1700’s in Australia, and is part of the history of many communities along the coast.

The sequence of photos represent a classic haul done in front of the old fishermen’s hut at South West Rocks, NSW.


The fishery is carefully managed to ensure catch levels remain sustainable. To reduce the bycatch of juveniles, and non-target species the mesh netting used in the ocean beach haul fishery is altered to have larger mesh openings depending on size and morphology of the targeted fish species. The size and shape of the mesh openings, as well as the type of netting material are all important to ensure only targeted species are captured.

This method is useful when professional fishermen are targeting demersal fish like Yellowfin Bream and Luderick.

Minimising the unintended capture of marine animals is a crucial part of professional fishing, it not only reduces the workload required to remove bycatch from the fishing haul but more importantly it minimises the impacts on marine ecosystems. 

Bycatch reduction methods help to ensure that the seafood that ends up on our plates is sustainably and responsibly sourced.

Learn more about the management of the fishery…