Abalone Fishing


  • You cannot take abalone on behalf of another licence holder.

  • You must be 10 years or older to hold an abalone licence.

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Blacklip abalone and greenlip abalone 

Aboriginal fishing

​​Aboriginal people​ engaged in aboriginal fishing are exempt from holding a recreational fishing licence but must comply with all other rules.

Size Limits

The minimum size for abalone varies around Tasmania for both blacklip and greenlip. The maps below show the areas corresponding to the different size limits. Please note that recreational and commercial size limits may not be the same.
​Size Limit
​Blacklip Abalone
​Arthur River east to Musselroe Point
120 mm
​Other waters 
​138 mm
​Greenlip Abalone 
​Montagu east to Bridport 
​132 mm
​Other waters 
​145 mm
* Transiting:  Fishers cannot possess abalone below the legal minimum legal size for a particular area. For example,you cannot transit in waters south of Arthur River and Musselroe Point with blacklip abalone less than 138 mm.

Blacklip Size Limit Boundaries including North Eastern Detail


Greenlip Size Limit Boundaries including Perkins Bay Detail

*Changes to some abalone bag and possession limits apply from 9 November 2021 due to several rules that were implemented in 2019 being rescinded by the Legislative Council. Read more.

Bag and Possession Limits

Fishers with a recreational abalone diving licence can have:

  • a personal bag limit of 10 abalone (combined species) per day.
  • a possession limit of 20 abalone.

Fishers without a recreational abalone licence:

  • can not take abalone;
  • can not possess abalone on state waters; and
  • Can possess up to 5 abalone without a receipt on land.  If you possess more than this, keep your receipt for purchases.

Measuring Abalone

  • Illustration showing how to measure abalone.Abalone are measured across the widest part of the shell.
  • You must carry a measuring device if you are fishing for abalone.
  • Measure the abalone before detaching it where possible as abalone that have been cut may die.
  • Undersize abalone must be replaced immediately
Get a free abalone measuring gauge at any Service Tasmania.

Measuring Devices

An abalone measuring device must be either:

  • A Vernier calliper; or
  • A gauge, knife or abalone iron with prominent markings or extended prongs that inducates the minimum size limits for abalone.

Abalone Tools

Only the following tools can be used to take abalone:
  • A commercially manufactured knife with a blade not less than 18mm wide excluding that part of the blade that is within 50mm of the tip;
  • An abalone iron that is a broadly flat-bladed, chisel-like lever not less than 18mm in width.
This does not apply to Aboriginal people engaged in an Aboriginal activity.
Abalone iron

A​balone iron

Shucking and Eating Abalo​ne

You can shuck (remove from shell) and eat one abalone per licence holder at sea. The shell must be retained and brought ashore.  This abalone is included in your daily bag limit. All other abalone must be brought ashore above the high water mark before shucking.


No Night Fishing

You cannot take abalone between sunset and sunrise.

Public Health Alerts

There are occasional restrictions on eating abalone due to toxic algal blooms. Check for current Public Health Warnings.


​For abalone fishing rules in Simplified Chinese, see the 捕捉鲍鱼​​ page. 

Illustrations by Peter Gouldthorpe


Recreational Fishing Enquiries
Level 3, 134 Macquarie St
Hobart TAS 7000
Phone: 03 6165 3233, 1300 720 647
Email: fishing.enquiries@nre.tas.gov.au