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No rain means no Hunter River prawns

Monday December 24, 2012 - 06:39 EDT

Hunter River prawn trawlers say a lack of rain has lead to a terrible catch this Christmas.

The Commercial Fishermen's Co-Op at Wickham is gearing up for a busy day today, with more than a dozen extra staff on hand.

Lobsters, crab and Balmain bugs have been selling well, along with local fish and prawns varieties.

But local fisherman Robert Hamilton says they are not likely to be Hunter River prawns.

"There's been very little rain so the prawns are sort of up river," he said.

"The lack of rain hasn't put any colour in the water in the open zones, so they're all up river.

"Prawns are working on a moon phase and the moon phase is always wrong at Christmas time, so there isn't going to be very many I don't think, not many Hunter River prawns."

Hunter River prawn trawlers will head out again today in the hope of turning around what had been a disappointing lead up to Christmas.

But Mr Hamilton says it has not been all bad for local prawn stocks.

"I think the Co-Op's probably got some Myall Rivers in stock," he said.

"I don't know whether there's been too many local King Prawns caught.

"Tuggerah Lakes is catching a few so there might be a few of them around.

"But the Hunter River is not too good at all.

"If we have a bad start we usually have a good finish so it all comes out in the wash."


© ABC 2012

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