Sustainable Management of Rock Lobster Fishery

Posted by Josette Dunn on 14th January 2011

The Tasmanian Minister for Primary Industries and Water Bryan Green today announced a reduction in next season’s total allowable catch for the commercial rock lobster fishery.
“To ensure the industry remains viable in the future decisions need to be made now because of declining fish stocks,” Mr Green said.

Mr Green said harvesting levels had shown decreasing numbers over several seasons.  “These measures are about providing a sustainable fishery for generations to come.

The total allowable catch for the commercial sector will be 1103.24 tonnes next season, 220 tonnes less than the current season while the catch for recreational fishers will remain at 170 tonnes.

Mr Green acknowledged the difficulties faced by the rock lobster industry in recent months and said that management of the recreational sector also needed to be considered in light of broader concerns for the fishery.

“Measures relating to recreational fishing are being considered as part of the overall review of the rock lobster fishery which is expected to be completed around the middle of this year.

“We have a responsibility to make sure our rock lobster stocks are managed sustainably.

Mr Green said problems with key markets in China were an added challenge for the industry and had been factored into his decision but underlying issues in the fishery could not be ignored.

Mr Green said the carryover of any under caught quota from this year to the next season would not be permitted.