Australian police are investigating whether human remains found on Tasmania's east coast could belong to a New Zealand fisherman missing in the area since January.

Basil Alexander Lee, 40, was last seen returning to sleep on a fishing boat at Triabunna wharf on January 11 where he was employed as a deckhand.

The remains were found around 10.30am (AEDT) on Friday near the Esplanade, Triabunna, by a local fisherman and his wife walking their dog.

Detective Sergeant Brett Berry of Bellerive police said the gender of the remains had not yet been determined.

Results from the forensic examination are expected to take several weeks.

A report is being prepared for the Coroner.