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Application for a mātaitai reserve at Ōmāui, Southland

Your views sought

Te Rūnanga o Awarua has applied for a mātaitai reserve along the coastline from the Mokomoko Inlet (southwest of Invercargill) to Cable Bay (west of Bluff). Fisheries New Zealand and Te Rūnanga o Awarua will hold a public meeting on the application and invites submissions on the proposal.

A mātaitai reserve is an identified traditional fishing ground and is established for the purpose of customary food gathering. Mātaitai reserves are limited to fisheries waters and do not include any land area.

Find out more about mātaitai reserves.

What's being proposed?

The approximate area of the proposed mātaitai reserve includes the Mokomoko Inlet (on the south side of the New River Estuary), then extends westwards then southwards around the Ōmāui coastline to Cable Bay (on the opposite side of the ithsmus from Ocean Beach, near Bluff). The proposed reserve extends offshore 0.5 nautical miles and covers 23 square kilometres. It covers those South Island fisheries waters within the following lines:

  1. From the starting point on the mean high-water mark at 46°30.517'S and 168°17.621'E; then
  2. by a straight line in a north-northwesterly direction for approximately 0.5 nautical miles to a point offshore at 46°29.919'S and 168°17.510'E; then
  3. by a line in a generally westerly then south-easterly direction, every point of which is 0.5 nautical miles from the mean high-water mark, to a point offshore at 46°36.228'S and 168°18.133'E; then
  4. by a straight line in a north-easterly direction to a point on the mean high-water mark at 46°35.644'S and 168°18.468'E; then
  5. by a line in a generally north-westerly then easterly direction along the mean high-water mark to the starting point.

Map of proposed Ōmāui mātaitai reserve

A black and white map showing the boundaries of the proposed Omaui mataitai. The map includes a compass pointer showing north and distance scale indicators in kilometres and nautical miles.

Proposed Ōmāui mātaitai reserve [PDF, 4.3 MB]

Application document

Download a copy of the application [PDF, 486 KB]

Attend the public meeting

Time: 6.30pm

Date: Tuesday 22 October 2019

Venue: Te Rau Aroha Marae, 12 Bradshaw Street, Bluff

Rūnanga contact details and location map

Making your submission

The closing date for written submissions from the local community is 11 November 2019.

Email your submission to

While we prefer email, you can post your submission to:

Fisheries Management – Spatial Planning and Allocations
Fisheries New Zealand
PO Box 2526
Wellington 6140

Public notices

Public notices about the meeting with the local community and the call for written submissions are scheduled to appear in The Southland Times on: 

  • Saturday 28 September 2019.
  • Monday 7 October 2019.

A notice is also planned to appear in The Southland Express on Thursday 3 October 2019.

A second consultation is planned

After the local community consultation period has closed, Fisheries New Zealand will hold a second consultation. This will invite written submissions from persons who take fish, aquatic life, or seaweed or own quota, and whose ability to take such fish, aquatic life, or seaweed or whose ownership interest in quota may be affected by the proposed mātaitai reserve. The second consultation will be advertised in the same newspapers and on this website.

Submissions are public information

Note, that any submission you make becomes public information. People can ask for copies of submissions under the Official Information Act 1982 (OIA). The OIA says we have to make submissions available unless we have a good reason for withholding it. That is explained in sections 6 and 9 of the OIA.

Tell us if you think there are grounds to withhold specific information in your submission. Reasons might include that it's commercially sensitive or it's personal information. However, any decision Fisheries New Zealand makes to withhold information can be reviewed by the Ombudsman, who may tell us to release it.