WA Nationals MP reacts to Lobster grab by draining yabbies from dam

The West Australian
Member for Roe Peter Rundle.
Camera IconMember for Roe Peter Rundle. Credit: supplied

When WA Nationals MP Peter Rundle heard the McGowan Government wanted to take 17.3 per cent of WA’s lobster fishery, he was worried how long it would be before Fisheries Minister Dave Kelly came for other crustaceans.

“The way things seem to be going these days, it’s a concern,” Rundle said.

“So, I thought I would get back to the farm at Katanning and catch a few yabbies before Dave Kelly decided to nationalise our farm dams and knock off 17 per cent of them.”

On a more serious note, the Member for Roe said the Government’s proposed lobster grab would hit regional WA hard.

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“It’s not just about the crayfishermen. It’s also the allied industries and the loss of money going into those communities,” he said.

The Nats MP said there were 22 yabbie-filled dams on the farm and his recent visit netted a 15kg haul of the freshwater crustacean, prized internationally for its sweet flesh.

Rundle wondered if Kelly would accept a yabbie grab in lieu of lobster.

“I guess I’d be more than happy to give him a few to keep him quiet,” Rundle joked.

But it looks as though Rundle can keep his crustaceans after all.

“Western Australians don’t own Peter Rundle’s farm or his yabbies, but Western Australians do own the lobsters off our coast,” Kelly told IC.

“And, Western Australians want to see more lobsters in WA, rather than see almost all of our lobsters shipped to China.”

Coincidentally, a significant percentage of WA yabbies sold are also exported overseas, so maybe a yabbie grab isn’t out of the question.

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