Fishery officers were patrolling both sides of the Coromandel Peninsula last week with the help of the Auckland-based police vessel Deodar III.
The patrols were concentrated on commercial fishers on both sides of the peninsula and around Great Barrier and Little Barrier islands.
Whitianga-based fishery officer Jason Howat said they boarded 18 commercial vessels over several days of patrolling, including long-liners, crayfishers and scallop boats.
Mr Howat said they were checking all the relevant paper work and reporting before getting down in the hold and inspecting the catch.
“We make sure that all the catch on board is properly recorded and do some measuring to make sure all species meet their minimum size requirements.”
Fishery officers were also checking restricted areas, where no commercial dredging for scallops is permitted.
Mr Howat said vessels and skippers were meeting their requirements, but they confiscated some illegal cray pots off the east coast of Great Barrier Island and have a few other details to follow up.
He said it was always a pleasure working with police aboard the Deodar III.
“Patrolling with the police provides us with much greater visibility.”
Ministry for Primary Industries District Compliance Manager Waikato/Bay of Plenty Brendon Mikkelsen said fishery officers and police patrol together in other high profile areas like the Bay of Islands and Marlborough Sounds.
“We also patrol with the Navy and Airforce and get to some pretty far flung places. It doesn’t matter where you are fishing in New Zealand, a fishery officer may turn up ask to inspect to your catch.”
For more information about fishing rules in the Auckland and Kermadec area, including the Coromandel Peninsula, you can:
- get a rules brochure from MPI offices
- download the rules brochure [PDF, 1.6 MB] or get a printer-friendly version [PDF, 1.5 MB]
- get the free NZ Fishing Rules app – Apple or Android
- send a free text to 9889 with the name of a species – for example "blue cod" or "pāua". You'll be sent legal bag and size limits for that species by return text.