Fisheries New Zealand is inviting people to have their say on proposed changes to catch limits and other settings across a range of fisheries for the new fishing year, beginning 1 October.
"The consultation is part of a regular cycle of reviews that take place twice-yearly to ensure the sustainability of New Zealand's fisheries," says Emma Taylor, Fisheries New Zealand's director of fisheries management.
"By reviewing the catch limits and other management measures of fish stocks, we help ensure their long-term sustainability for all New Zealanders to enjoy."
This review focuses on 15 fish stocks across the country, with proposals to change their catch limits and allowances.
Deemed value adjustments are also proposed for some of these stocks, as well as for an additional 6 fish stocks. Deemed values are rates paid by fishers for excess catch, and provide incentives for individual commercial fishers to stay within limits.
"Our fisheries are important to everyone and, along with scientific information, we have developed the proposals with input from tangata whenua and stakeholders.
"We use the best available scientific information to tell us what's happening in our fisheries and to identify what course of action to take. Where information suggests more fish can be harvested sustainably, we look to increase catch limits. On the other hand, if stocks aren't as healthy, catch limits are reduced to help the fishery recover."
An example is the snapper fishery on the west cost of the North Island (SNA 8) which has shown positive changes. This follows cuts made to the catch limits in 2005.
"The latest scientific assessment found that abundance of snapper has increased, and the fishery has recovered from historical lows. With more fish in the water, we're proposing changes to the catch settings to make sure they're set appropriately while maintaining the sustainability of this important shared fishery.
"Once consultation closes, Fisheries New Zealand will analyse the submissions and make recommendations to the Minister for Oceans and Fisheries to make a decision. Most changes will come into effect from the new fishing year, beginning on 1 October 2021."
Consultation begins today and we encourage everyone who has an interest in these fisheries to have their say. Submissions can be made online by 5pm on Tuesday, 27 July 2021.
Consultation is on proposed changes to the following fisheries:
- Snapper (SNA 8 – West coast of Auckland, Northland, Taranaki, and Wellington)
- Hāpuku/Bass (HPB 1 & 2 – Northland, Bay of Plenty, and east coast North Island)
- Red gurnard (GUR 7 – West Coast and top of the South Island, and GUR 1 – east and west coasts of Auckland and Northland, and Bay of Plenty)
- Pāua (PAU 3a & 3b – Kaikōura and Christchurch)
- Blue Cod (BCO 3 – Kaikōura, Canterbury, and Otago)
- School shark (SCH 5 – Southland and Sub-Antarctic)
Deepwater and Highly Migratory Species
- Hoki (HOK 1 – nation-wide)
- Ling (LIN 5 – Southland region)
- Black Cardinal fish (CDL 1 – off east coast of Northland and Auckland)
- Gemfish (SKI 3 & 7 – South Island, Chatham Rise, west coast off Taranaki and Wellington)
- Southern bluefin tuna (STN 1 – nation-wide)
Review of deemed values only
- Bluenose (BNS 2 – East Cape, Hawke's Bay, and Wellington)
- Gemfish (SKI 1 – northern east and west coasts North Island, and SKI 2 – East Cape, Hawke's Bay, and Wellington)
- Blue cod (BCO 7 – West Coast and top of the South Island)
- Alfonsino (BYX 2 – East Cape, Hawke's Bay, and Wellington)
- Kingfish (KIN 8 – west coast of Northland, Auckland, Taranaki, and Wellington)