NT’s first female Aboriginal fisheries inspector


Trailblazer Theresa Lemon has become the first female ranger to receive a fisheries inspector card in the Northern Territory.

The Malak Malak ranger made history when she became the first female ranger around eight years ago, and her latest achievement paves the way for other Aboriginal women to become fisheries inspectors across the Territory.

As part of her training, Theresa participated in Certificate III Fisheries Compliance.

The NT Fisheries facilitated training supports Aboriginal sea rangers with additional powers to protect country, and to assist in fishery conservation, management and enforcement of the Fisheries Act 1988.

As a qualified fisheries inspector, Theresa has the powers to:

  • request names and addresses
  • request licence or permit numbers authorising the taking of fish or aquatic life
  • examine any fishing gear believed to be used for taking fish or aquatic life.

Theresa will also prepare evidence to support Police on enforcement matters, as well as delivering educational material to local fishers and the community.

Monitoring, compliance and stewardship by fisheries inspectors and the Malak Malak rangers is vital to ensure stocks remain sustainable in the face of increasing fishing activity.

Since the program began, 32 Aboriginal rangers have undertaken Certificate III Fisheries Compliance training, facilitated by NT Fisheries and delivered by the Australian Maritime Fishing Academy.

The Certificate II training has been successfully completed by 198 rangers.

Born on the banks of the Daly River, Theresa is a Traditional Owner for the Daly River region. Her passion for the health of the river and the safety of its users has seen her work hard to achieve this career milestone.

The department would like to congratulate Theresa on her achievement, and her tireless efforts to protect the Daly River and its resources for future generations.

Theresa Lemon the first female Aboriginal fisheries inspector

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