Fishy fine for local

FISHY: An Ocean Grove man was fined for possessing 19 of these beautiful but noxious fish.

A 51-YEAR-OLD Ocean Grove man was recently found guilty and fined $1745 in the Geelong Magistrates’ Court over the possession of koi carp.
Regional supervising Fisheries Victoria officer Paul Millar said the man was fined $600 for possessing a declared noxious aquatic species, $1000 for failing to provide supplier details to Fisheries Victoria and $145 in court costs.
Fisheries Officers searched a property in October 2015 and found a large makeshift pond containing 19 live koi carp.
“A number of polystyrene boxes marked ‘live fish’ were also located with one box clearly displaying international flight details originating out of Bangkok,” he said.
Mr Millar said koi carp are an ornamental variety of common carp (Cyprinus carpio) and are declared a noxious aquatic species in Victoria.
“Common carp are extremely destructive and have contributed to the degradation of numerous Victorian waterways since being introduced,” he said.
“They can spread and populate to areas quickly. They out-compete native fish and destroy natural habitat.”
Mr Millar said although the fish looked very beautiful they posed a significant threat to Victorian waterways and could have substantial environmental impacts.
He reminded the public that it is an offence to be in possession of any declared noxious aquatic species in Victoria without a permit.
Anyone who sees or suspects illegal fishing activity is urged to call the 24-hour reporting line 13 FISH (13 3474).