Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy has announced changes to commercial fishing limits in two areas as part of the annual fisheries sustainability review.

“From 1 April 2015 the total allowable catch for the southern blue whiting stock at the Bounty Platform will be decreased to ensure its ongoing sustainability, while the commercial limit for Otago rock lobster will increase,” says Mr Guy.

“Limits for rock lobster (crayfish) will be unchanged in Northland, Gisborne, the Canterbury and Marlborough region, and the Westland and Taranaki region.”

The decisions follow consultation with all stakeholders and careful consideration of scientific advice.

“The only change to non-commercial settings is for rock lobster in Northland where total customary and recreational limits are being set for the first time, along with allowances for other sources of fishing-related mortality. This does not impact on the established recreational bag or size limits operating in that area.”

Officials will also be undertaking further community engagement later in the year to explore shared fisheries issues between sectors in CRA3 (Gisborne) and CRA5 (Canterbury/Marlborough).

More information is available at:

Key changes for 1 April 2015 are:

  • A 4,000 tonne decrease in the catch limit for the Bounty Platform’s southern blue whiting fishery, from 7000t to 3000t.
  • A decrease in the deemed value rates for all giant spider crab stocks.
  • A 31.72 tonne increase to the commercial limit in the Otago rock lobster fishery, from 86t to 117.72t.
  • Setting a 273.062 tonne total allowable catch limit for the Northland rock lobster fishery, which includes allowances for customary Māori of 20 tonnes, 50 tonnes for recreational fishers, and 72 tonnes to allow for other sources of fishing-related mortality.