Report reveals NZ stock status
Southern blue whiting stocks are at a historic high in NZ
The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) in New Zealand has reported positive trends in fish stocks, especially the Southern blue whiting which is now at a historic high.
The findings are published in the latest Fisheries Assessment Plenary report. Published annually, these reports provide scientific information about fish populations and the impacts of fishing and are a key tool for fishery management.
All stocks in New Zealand’s Quota Management System are managed for long-term sustainability. If a fish stock is found to be declining, MPI fisheries managers may propose a change, for example reducing catch limits.
MPI’s principal fisheries science advisor, Pamela Mace said: “We have been striving to continually improve the information content and utility of the reports. For example this year a system ranking the quality of scientific information has been included for the first time.”
Other key findings in the report included that both stocks of hoki (eastern and western) have continued to increase in size over the past six consecutive years, and both are now well within their target range.
Also, Gurnard around the east and south coasts of the South Island has been assessed to be very likely to be above its management target - on the west coast of the South Island the trawl survey estimate for 2011 was the highest recorded since 1992.
MPI fisheries managers are now considering the status assessments and whether there is a case for proposing changes to management of some stocks.
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