Club Rules


Fishing Rules as of 1 JULY 2022


 1 July – 30 June

Winter Season

1 July – 30 September

Fishing Area

NZ 200 mile EEZ

Local Waters

Waters within the MBGFC Tournament Boundaries

Weigh Station

Whitianga Wharf and MBGFC Clubrooms


Financial Members
Financial members are those whose subs for the current season have been received by the Club before they go fishing.

Day Membership
A $15 daily fee entitles an angler to join the Club for a calendar day (from midnight to midnight).
To be eligible for day membership an angler must either:-
Fill in a day membership form or if unavailable, the back of an envelope or piece of paper with the following information – date(s) fishing, boat name, full name, address, phone/mobile number/s, birth date (if 16 or under), amount of payment, and signature. This, with the appropriate fee must be put under the main door of the clubrooms or handed in to the club office PRIOR to leaving the wharf to go fishing or :-
Fill in a day membership form available on a licensed charter vessel, which has been pre-paid by the skipper. The skipper will in turn radio Gamebase with the appropriate name, membership number and date before leaving the wharf or if overnighting elsewhere prior to 8am or starting fishing whichever is sooner.

Junior Anglers
Junior members cease to be junior anglers when they turn seventeen.

The skipper is the person in command of a vessel and may or may not be the helmsman. The skipper may drive the vessel but may also be the angler.

Time of Catch
The skipper’s recorded time of a fish being boated or tagged is deemed to be the time of catch.

Catch Cards
Must be completed fully and correctly with first and last name (not initials) before fish are presented to the Weighmaster.

Weighing of Fish
A fish may not be weighed at the MBGFC Weigh Station if it has already been weighed at another club.

Catch List
All fish weighed at the MBGFC weighstation which are not courtesy weighed for other clubs. All tag and release cards handed in to the MBGFC weigh station. All fish weighed by members elsewhere in NZ providing:
(i) The angler or weighing club provides us with the original catch card clearly marked “Courtesy Weigh for Mercury Bay.
(ii) Gear is submitted to our weighmasters for checking unless the catch card clearly indicates that this has been done by the weighing club.

Fish Caught Elsewhere by Members
Fish weighed at weighstations in New Zealand other than MBGFC which do not comply with (i) and (ii) above will be included in a separate list if catch cards are handed in signed by a weighmaster or charter boat skipper. Tagged & released fish when tag cards are handed in to other clubs may also be included on this list. Fish weighed overseas may also be included but they are ineligible for Club records.

Courtesy Weighing
Non MBGFC members may have their fish courtesy weighed at the MBGFC weighstation. A catch card will be given to the angler and/or forwarded to his/her club and a copy retained for inclusion in the MBGFC catch list if the angler is not a member of another club.

Tag & Release of Fish
Broadbill, marlin, bluefin and yellowfin tuna, blue and mako sharks and kingfish (over 75cm) are subject to a MFish scientific tagging programme and will gain points towards season tallies for individual and boat trophies. A fully completed MFish tag card and a fully completed MBGFC catch card must be presented to a weighmaster along with gear for checking no later than twenty eight (28) days after the date of catch and by July 1.

Points for Tagged & Released Fish
Broadbill & Marlin 450 Yellowfin Tuna 100 Blue Sharks 25
Bluefin Tuna         200 Mako Sharks     50 Kingfish 25

Dredges, Daisy Chains etc.
(i) Dredges, Spreader Bars, Outriggers, Downriggers and Kites may be used provided that the actual fishing line (NOT THE LEADER OR DOUBLE LINE) is attached to the snap or other release device.
(ii) Daisy Chains, Birds, Bloats, and similar devices may only be used if they do not unfairly hamper or inhibit the normal swimming or fighting ability of the fish, thereby giving the angler or crew an unfair advantage in fighting, landing, or boating the fish.
Daisy Chains, Birds, Floats, and similar devices, when used with a hooked lure or bait must be presented to the weighmaster as they become part of the overall leader/trace/wind-on length rules.
(iii) All such devices in (i) and (ii) above may be used strictly as a teaser.

Strikes (Single and Multiple)
(i) When a strike occurs, the angler(s) must immediately remove the rod(s) from the rod holder(s), while the crew clear the rest of the gear.
(ii) If the number of fish in a multiple strike equals or exceeds the number of people on the boat, gear may be cleared prior to fighting the fish.
(iii) Once an angler has fought one fish from a multiple strike, whether that fish is caught or lost, they must not present a subsequent fish from the same multiple strike.
(iv) Fish left on rods while others are fought must be self-disqualified.

Iki Spiking
Iki spiking is encouraged and is not classified as mutilation.
Bleeding of fish to improve food quality is encouraged and bled fish are eligible for Club records. However, possible World or New Zealand record fish must NOT be bled or a claim will be ineligible.

Transport of Fish
Fish may be transported to the weigh station by any method or combination of methods. It is the responsibility of the angler to ensure that fish arrive in good condition and are removed after weighing.

Line Testing
The angler must specify the breaking strain of the line used in a catch. If a line over tests it will be moved up to the appropriate line class. If it under tests it will not be moved down.

Charter Vessels
Vessels displaying a current MNZ number are deemed to be charter vessels for the purpose of awarding trophies unless the Club receives written notification that no charters are to be undertaken BEFORE the start of any season. No change to that status can be made during a season.

Commercial Vessels
Gamefish caught from commercial vessels are not eligible to count towards individual angler pins or trophies, or launch trophies, other than those designated for commercial vessels. They are eligible for Club records however. Commercial vessels are boats that are registered for the purpose of catching fish for sale. Commercial vessels that obtain a particular approval under Section 111(1)(a) of the Fisheries Act are deemed to be non-commercial for that period. The approval must be in the MBGFC office prior to going fishing.

Club Records
All financial members of the MBGFC are eligible to break existing or set new Club records for gamefish providing IGFA rules are observed. Fish can be weighed at the MBGFC weigh station or elsewhere in New Zealand providing a courtesy weigh is carried out and the angler forwards a copy of the weigh sheet to the MBGFC office. Fish DO NOT have to exceed the breaking strain of the line.

(Silver miniatures of the species caught)
All financial members of the MBGFC are eligible to be awarded pins providing IGFA rules are observed and the fish is on the MBGFC catch list. Fish must not weigh less than the breaking strain of the line used. Pins are awarded as follows:-
Light Tackle – includes 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 8 and 10 kg line classes.
(i) First fish of each species (all line classes combined)
(ii) Heaviest fish of each species for season in each line class.

Heavy Tackle – includes 15, 24, 37 and 60kg line classes.
As well as fish having to make line weight, minimum weights of 90kg for marlin apply.
(i) First fish of each species (all line classes combined)
(ii) Fish increasing by 10kg (marlin and sharks) and 3kg (other species) throughout season.

All financial members of the MBGFC are eligible to be awarded trophies providing IGFA rules are observed and the fish are on the MBGFC catch list.
Fish must be caught by MBGFC members to count towards boat trophies.
Fish DO NOT have to exceed the breaking strain of the line except for the awarding of the Somervell Cup, Peachey-Gardiner Trophy and Winter Trophy.
On heavy tackle minimum weights of 90kg for marlin apply.

Points Formula
Fish Weight x 100 / Line Weight
e.g. 60kg fish on 24kg line earns 250 points
3kg fish on 6kg line earns 50 points

Light Tackle Tournament
If this tournament is not held in a season the Jackson Cup will be awarded to the vessel scoring the most points accumulated from their highest points scoring fish of each species caught on light tackle throughout the season.

IGFA Rules & NZSFC Rules & By Laws
Where not specifically covered by these rules all fish must be caught under the IGFA Rules and NZSFC Rules & By Laws. It is the responsibility of every angler to have a full understanding of these rules and to fish by them.

Gamefish species recognised by NZSFC
Broadbill Swordfish
Black Marlin
Blue Marlin
Striped Marlin
Shortbill Spearfish
Pacific Bluefin Tuna
Southern Bluefin Tuna
Bigeye Tuna
Yellowfin Tuna
Slender Tuna
Skipjack Tuna
Giant Sea Bass
Blue Shark
Tiger Shark
Dusky Shark
Other species of saltwater fish caught in South Pacific waters that are recognised by IGFA Rules.

Any disputes regarding fish caught and the awarding of pins and trophies must be made in writing to the Committee of the MBGFC. Disputes will be dealt with by a sub-committee appointed for that purpose and their decision will be final.



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