West Coast Rock lobsters/ crayfish may be caught only on the days specified below. A maximum of  four rock lobsters allowed per fisherman with valid licence per day.

 

Licences can be purchased at your local Post Office for R92.

 

15 November  – 18 November  2012 = All days of the week

19 November to 14 December 2012 = Only weekends

15 December to 31 December 2012 = All days of the week

1 January to 1 April 2013 = Weekends and public holidays

According to the Dept of  Agriculture and fisheries:

“Permits will only be issued to persons above the age of 12 years. Recreational permit-holders collecting and landing of west coast rock lobster may do so only between 8h00 – 16h00. The rock lobsters must be landed by 16h00.

Any west coast rock lobster caught, collected or transported shall be kept in a whole state. West coast rock lobster caught with a recreational permit may not be sold by any person.”

Females in berry i.e carrying orange eggs under their tails, must be returned to the sea immediately.

 

More about the West Coast Rock Lobster:

The West Coast Rock Lobster (Jasus Lalandii, Kreef) is found from Cape Cross in Namibia to East London. It is a threatened and protected species.

The West Coast Rock Lobster grows very slowly and can live to about 50 years of age, if they are not caught or poached before then. The females carry their orange eggs on tiny hairs under their tails which after 80-90 days hatch into tiny spiderlike larvae called naupliosoma. These moult t and become phyllosoma larvae with long hairy legs. The phyllosoma larvae drift in the currents for over 7 months and moult 11 times. According to the Two Oceans Aquarium website some of these might make their way to South America and back!

Finally the larva becomes a puerulus, a 20mm colourless lobster that swims inshore to find shelter under a rock or ledge where it grows to maturity. Male lobsters grow larger than females and also grow more quickly. Males take 7-10 years to reach catchable size, while females take up to 20 years.

West Coast Rock lobsters play an important part in the kelp forest food chain, feeding on mussels, sea urchins, starfish, perlemoen and barnacles. In turn they are preyed on by octopi, dogsharks and seals and, of course, man.

Info garnered from

http://www.wwfsassi.co.za

http://www.aquarium.co.za