Fisheries New Zealand is inviting people to have their say on proposals for new catch limits and other measures across a range of fish stocks as part of its regular review of fisheries.
"We're reviewing catch limits and deemed value settings for 9 fish stocks as part of our twice-yearly review to ensure the ongoing sustainability of New Zealand’s fisheries resources", says Emma Taylor, director of fisheries management.
"Aotearoa’s oceans and fisheries are important to all New Zealanders – they provide food for our whānau and jobs in our communities.
By reviewing catch limits and other management measures, we help ensure their long-term sustainability for all New Zealanders to enjoy.
"We use the best available science and information to determine how fish stocks are faring and what course of action should be taken. If the information tells us that more fish can be sustainably caught, then we look at increasing the catch limits so everyone can benefit from the fisheries. However, if the information shows the opposite, we propose reducing the catch limits to take fishing pressure off the stocks.
"Fishing pressure is not the only factor that influences fish stocks. We also consider things like changes to the marine ecosystem that may affect sustainability, such as habitat degradation or pollution.
Consultation is on changes to the following stocks:
- three rock lobster stocks (CRA 1, 7, and 8) across the country
- two hapuku and bass stocks (HPB 7 and 8) off the South Island’s west coast
- one redbait stock (RBT 7) off the west coast of the South Island
- one southern blue whiting stock (SBW 6B) off the south of the South Island, and
- two scallop stocks (SCA 1 and SCA CS) in Northland and Coromandel.
Hapuku and bass stocks on the west coast are proposed to have their total allowable catch limits and allowances set for the first time.
In addition to these proposed changes, we’re also looking at options for the Northern and Coromandel scallop fisheries including a proposed closure to these fisheries to the take pressure off the scallop populations.
"Recent survey results and information from fishing and local communities suggests there are sustainability risks to scallops populations. Temporary closures were recently placed on the East Coromandel and Waiheke Island scallop fisheries following iwi and community concerns about sustainability of these stocks.
"People are passionate about fisheries and there will always be strong views from across the interests. It’s important that we hear what those views are so we can improve our proposals. We encourage everyone who has an interest in any of the fisheries being reviewed to submit their feedback."
Consultation runs for approximately 8 weeks and closes on 8 February 2022.
More information about the proposals and how to make a submission
Following consultation, Fisheries New Zealand will analyse the feedback and provide advice to the Minister for Oceans and Fisheries for his consideration. Any changes will be announced prior to the 1 April fishing year.