Turning the tide

January 10, 2014
Hard work by passionate advocates turned the tide on four iconic fish species in 2013. If you supported any of these causes you should feel proud, thank you. Yellowfin tuna stocks globally have retracted due to international commercial fishing pressure and Greenpeace led the charge campaigning to stop the sale of yellowfin tuna caught using Fish Aggregating Devices (FADs). We have been actively working to prevent the demise of yellowfin in New Zealand waters for some time – so the announcement that Sealords finally caved to public pressure was most welcome! Thank you Greenpeace for spearheading this international challenge.
Credit: Greenpeace
We stopped striped marlin being added into the quota management system with the LegaSea “Hands off our Marlin” campaign. Within three days of launching our public awareness campaign the Minister, Nathan Guy announced striped marlin would not become a commercially landed species. We followed up with our “Save our Snapper” campaign challenging Ministry proposed changes to snapper 1. While the outcome was disappointing most importantly we showed the politicians recreational fishers wouldn’t be taken lightly. A great platform to build on. LegaSea salutes the NZ Shark Alliance for the announcement from both the Ministers of conservation and primary industries to stop shark finning in New Zealand. There’s still work to be done to pass the legislation and address the three year time frame for implementation, but another big decision, that while makes sense, has been a disgrace for some time. The common thread for these outcomes was support from people just like you, who added to a groundswell of opposition. This made all the difference. By taking a couple of minutes to send a submission or contribute a few dollars our united voice grew louder and could no longer be ignored. That’s a good start, but only the beginning. Productive input into strategic decision-making process (managed by the Ministry) is critical. These strategies developed will shape the future of all our fisheries. Sustainability, environmental and the publics fishing interests must come first when considering how our fisheries are managed. That’s what we strive to achieve. Our experienced team of advocates, scientists, legal and policy specialists are ready. The question that remains is whether or not the Ministry run processes will be open and transparent so that we can engage effectively. We’ll let you know. In 2013 LegaSea gave you a glimpse into our fisheries.
“Poor fisheries management decisions are made that affect you, your children and your grandchildren.” LegaSea
Issues continue to arise in our fisheries. There’s much more work to be done throughout New Zealand. We are dedicated to working on these issues. Today only 5% of people who fish in New Zealand are helping to resource the work that must be done. The majority of these are NZ Sport Fishing Council members who pay affiliation fees. Imagine how strong our voice would be if 100% of those who value fishing got on board! More funding means more resources, more time and energy working for better outcomes. We still have the choice to stand up for ourselves to fund and foster our own fishing future or potentially be forced into regulated salt-water fishing licenses. The choice is yours. As the public outreach brand of the New Zealand Sport Fishing Council we support and promote your interests for good management of our precious fisheries resources to ensure that there are abundant fisheries for future generations of Kiwis. By making a modest monthly contribution of $10 or more to LegaSea (that’s a coffee and some bait) we can apply the resources required to effectively lobby for better fisheries policy and management practices.