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Bylaws for the Rāpaki Mātaitai


19 March 2021 – Decisions released

The Minister of Fisheries has approved bylaws for the Rāpaki Mātaitai Reserve.

1. No shellfish can be harvested from the reserve except tuaki (cockles), pipi, kūtai (mussels), pāpaka (crabs), and tio (oysters).

2. New daily shellfish bag limits are:

  • 30 tuaki (cockles)
  • 30 pipi
  • 30 kūtai (mussels)
  • 10 pāpaka (crabs)
  • 10 tio (oysters).

3. New minimum size limits apply to tuaki (cockles), pipi, and tio (oysters). These shellfish must be larger than:

  • 40mm for tuaki (cockles)
  • 50mm for pipi
  • 50mm for tio (oysters).

Note: For shellfish, size limit means the length of the greatest diameter of the shell.

4. New daily finfish bag limits are:

  • 20 pātiki (flounder)
  • 2 rāwaru (blue cod)
  • 5 hoka (red cod)
  • 10 mararī (butterfish)
  • 10 moki
  • 2 kōiro (conger eel).

Note: The bylaws set a daily limit of 10 finfish, within the maximum combined daily limit of 30, for any other species not named in this list.

5. Taking whai repo (skates and rays) from within the reserve is prohibited.

6. Taking seaweed, other than wakame (Undaria pinnatifida) is also prohibited.

7. All fishing within the Rāpaki Bay Mataitai Reserve is to be reported to the Tangata Tiaki/Kaitiaki of the Reserve within 5 days by filing a catch return form available from the Rāpaki Marae Office

These bylaws came into effect on 19 March 2021.

22 June 2020 – Consultation reopened, bylaws revised

This further (second) consultation closed on 31 July 2020.

Following the consultation that closed on 13 December 2019, Tangata Tiaki/Kaitiaki revised some of the proposed bylaws for shellfish within the mātaitai. The proposed bylaws for finfish and seaweed were unchanged.

The Tangata Tiaki/Kaitiaki proposed to also close the mātaitai to the harvest of both pipi and tio (oysters). Fisheries New Zealand reopened the consultation to get feedback about the revised bylaws.

Revised Bylaws for the Rāpaki Mātaitai Reserve (second consultation) [PDF, 319 KB]


Background to the first consultation

The Tangata Tiaki/Kaitiaki of the Rāpaki Mātaitai proposed a package of bylaws to improve fisheries within the mātaitai. This included changes to the daily bag limits for a number of fish, shellfish, and seaweed species within the mātaitai reserve boundaries.

Consultation document

Proposed Mātaitai Bylaws for the Rāpaki Mātaitai Reserve [PDF, 597 KB]

What was proposed?

The existing bylaws for the Rāpaki Mātaitai were being updated and revised. The existing bylaws can be found at the New Zealand Gazette  

Tangata Tiaki/Kaitiakai for the Rāpaki Mātaitai proposed bylaws that would ensure sustainability and enhance stocks.

These included:

  • setting reduced recreational daily limits for a number of local fish and shellfish species,
  • prohibit taking shellfish other than tuaki (cockles), pipi, kutai (mussels), pāpaka (crabs) or tio (oysters).
  • prohibit taking seaweed except karengo and wakame (Undaria).

This consultation closed on 13 December 2019.

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