Targeting bigger fish and more of them

June 20, 2014
LegaSea is promoting a rebuild of our inshore fisheries, to a minimum target level of 40% of their virgin biomass, or unfished stock size. That’s B40. B40 means more fish get to grow to a decent size. B40 also means our fisheries will be more robust and able to cope with any dramatic events, like a rough summer season that results in poor survival of fry and lower recruitment of juveniles into the adult fishery. Abundance and diversity is achievable if we set B40 as minimum management target for our fisheries. Over the past year LegaSea has been promoting a B40 policy for snapper. This policy aligns with government standards. If a B40 policy were given effect the snapper fishery between North Cape and East Cape would be double what it is now. Imagine that! For other, less robust species we might need to aim higher. As well as being achievable, the target we choose needs to be affordable, well supported and publicised. Our politicians will only stand for good fisheries policies if there is sufficient support, so get going, visit your local MP, send them an email and ask them for their party’s fisheries policy. If they are not advocating for B40 then ask them why not? Our national interest depends on healthy fisheries and a clean marine environment. Our children’s fishing future relies on us to act now. Putting words into action This year’s Hutchwilco New Zealand Boat Show was one of the best, in terms of engaging with people like you who fish and care for the life and oceans that surround Aotearoa. It was heartening to receive so much positive feedback, your honest appraisal and suggestions for future action. We had fun putting people into the draw to win a LegaSea prize pack valued at over $500. There were over 700 entries and Paul Sables of East Tamaki was the lucky winner. He scored himself an Icey Tek chilly bin, a LegaSea-Hutchwilco lifejacket, tee shirt, hat and a range of other goodies. Thanks to everyone who participated in the draw. Thanks also to the 18 volunteers we had on the stand. It was good to spend time together and learn why they support LegaSea. Each had a different story, but the common theme was their enthusiasm to protect and enhance our marine environment.