Measuring, Marking and Sexing Rock Lobster


​Measuring rock lobster

The length of the rock lobster's​ carapace (shell) is used to measure its size. To measure a rock lobster:
  • Spread the antennal horns.
  • Place the gauge tip hard into the middle notch.
  • Measure from the notch to the end of the carapace.
If you are taking rock lobster close to minimum size, be sure your measuring device is accurate.

Tail-clipping rock lobster

​Rock lobster that you keep must be marked as 'recreationally-caught' fish as follows:
  • Cut off at least a quarter of the central tail flap OR punch a 10 mm hole in it.
  • If fishing from a boat, mark the tail fan within 5 minutes of the lobster being brought to the boat and before landing; or
  • If fishing from the shore, mark the tail fan within 5 minutes of landing and within 50 metres of the place where you are fishing.

Sexing rock lobster

Female rock lobster
  • have large, overlapping pleopods (swimmerets/flaps) under the tail; and
  • have a small nipper claw is present on the end of each rear leg.
It is illegal to take female rock lobster in berry (with eggs) or strip the eggs.  If you catch a lobster in berry, return it to the water as soon as possible.​

Female rock lobster in berry

Female rock lobster in berry​

Video - Female rock lobster in berry​

Male rock lobster
  • have small swimmerets under the tail;
  • have no nipper claws on the rear legs.
Female and male rock lobster tails


Recreational Fishing Enquiries
Level 3, 134 Macquarie St
Hobart TAS 7000
Phone: 03 6165 3233, 1300 720 647