Commercial Dive Fishery

​​What can be fished​

A number of different species are harvested under the commercial dive fishery which include:
  • short spined sea urchin 
  • long spined sea urchin
  • periwinkles
  • undaria (Japanese kelp)


How are licences issued

There are currently 52 commercial dive licences and no more will be issued.  Anyone wishing to enter the fishery must either purchase a commercial dive licence from an existing holder or be placed on an existing licence as a supervisor (lease a licence). 

In addition to the commercial dive licence you must also have a: 
  • Fishing Licence Personal (FLP) which can be purchased from our licensing section
  • Fishing Licence Vessel (FLV) for any vessel you are diving from these have to be either purchased or leased from an existing holder as no more will be issued.

How much can be fished

A commercial dive licence entitles the holder or supervisor to harvest both types of sea urchins and periwinkles:
  • Heliocidaris erythrogramma
    The short spined native sea urchin has well established markets. There is a minimum size limit of 70 mm for this species and a ​total allowable catch does apply. 175 tonnes may be taken annually from State waters allocated across five different zones.

  • Centrostephanus rodgersii
    The long spined urchin recently found to be invading Tasmanian waters. Markets are still being developed for this species but it is considered a pest species so there is no size limit or total allowable catch for this species.

  • Periwinkles (genus Turbo)
    There is a minimum size limit of 45 mm and a total allowable catch for this species across the same zone structure as for the Heliocidaris.

There is no quota allocated to divers for any species in the commercial dive fishery but for the shortspined sea urchin and periwinkles there is a “first in first served” policy.  

When the total allowable catch is reached in a zone, that zone is closed until the following licensing year (licensing year runs from 1 September to 31 August in the following year).


In this Topic

  • Rules and Policy Information
    Includes the updated Commercial Dive Policy Documents which are used to manage the operations of the commercial dive fishery in conjunction with the management plan.
  • Dive Zones
    The commercial dive fishery is divided into five zones around the state.
  • Catch and Closures Information
    Total Allowable Catch and closed areas for the commercial dive fishery.
  • Sea Urchin Fishery
    Includes fisheries for the short spined purple sea urchin and the introduced long spined sea urchin.


Wild Fisheries Management Branch
Level 3, 134 Macquarie Street
GPO Box 44
Hobart TAS 7001
Phone: 03 6165 3000, 1300 368 550