Fisheries Management

Why is it important for New Zealand to adopt B50?

July 24, 2021 B50 means a more resilient ocean through more fish and increased biodiversity. More fish in the water means fish stocks have well-balanced age structures in their populations and a more productive marine ecosystem that can support other creatures such as marine mammals, seabirds, and sharks.  In measuring fish population size for a fish stock, Fisheries […]

Why should I care about B50?

July 24, 2021 B50 can be further explained as fish population sizes should be at a minimum at 50% of the size that the original fish population was, before large-scale fishing began.  B50 means more fish in New Zealand waters. More fish means more biodiversity through increased fish abundance. More biodiversity creates ecological resilience to fight environmental issues […]

What is B50?

July 24, 2021 B50 describes a fish population at 50% of its estimated original stock size (biomass). Biomass is an estimate of the total quantity of fish in a given area.  If a fish stock is estimated to be at B50 that means that there is around half the amount of fish in a given area compared to […]

How does New Zealand use biomass in managing fisheries?

July 24, 2021 New Zealand uses different biomass levels to measure stock status when carrying out a fish stock assessment. Two biomass levels are used, the spawning stock biomass, and the initial biomass (B0).The spawning stock biomass and the initial biomass are compared as a percentage to indicate overall fish stock status.  The spawning stock biomass is the […]

What is biomass?

July 24, 2021   In fisheries, biomass is an estimate of the total quantity of fish in a given area. Biomass can be expressed in different ways, depending on what you are trying to measure.  For example, biomass can be an estimate of the number of fish able to breed, or biomass can be expressed as the estimated […]

Why is information on high grading, bycatch and dumping often withheld by Fisheries New Zealand or its predecessors?

November 2, 2020 Embarrassment. In 2014 fisheries officials discussed the merits of releasing or not releasing damning evidence of illegal and wasteful practices by commercial fishers. They discussed the potential backlash if the evidence was withheld by the Ministry and later discovered and made public. The 2016 report by Michael Heron QC details this discussion in relation to […]

Why is the lack of data a problem?

November 2, 2020 The Minister of Fisheries has a statutory obligation to ‘ensure sustainability’. He needs to know how many fish to set aside to account for expected mortality before he can allocate any fish for commercial catch. More cautious catch limits need to be set when there is greater uncertainty around mortality levels.

How are dead fish accounted for in management decisions?

November 2, 2020 When setting total catch limits for a particular fishery, the Minister of Fisheries sets aside a tonnage of fish to allow for the mortality caused by all fishing. This could be fish killed by trawling and other methods, fish that drop out of nets and unseen mortality, fish that die after fishing has occurred. This […]

Why do you say that Māori only own around 10.7% of the total quota share value when they actually own more than 40% of all quota?

May 29, 2020 Independent analysis by the NZ Institute of Economic Research shows that on the information available Māori own around 40% of quota shares (by volume) but only 10.7% of the total quota share value. This is a conservative estimate of iwi ownership and value because not all the relevant details are available; that is understandable given […]

Is commercial exploitation and overfishing the reasons why the Snapper 1 fishery needs rebuilding?

August 23, 2018 The recent stock assessment suggests that the Snapper 1 stock has doubled from its low point of the 1990s, so it can be argued that it has rebuilt. That is the problem with language like this – what does rebuilt mean? It suggests a fully rebuilt stock would be back at an unfished biomass. The […]