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Recreational fishing survey

Recreational fishing survey – coming to a boat ramp near you

Over the summer, NIWA and Blue Water Marine Research staff will be interviewing recreational marine fishers returning to commonly used boat ramps to collect recreational catch information. Commissioned by the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry (MAF), the marine boat ramp surveys are part of MAF’s overall marine recreational fishing research programme to better understand and manage our fisheries.

MAF Director General Wayne McNee says recreational fishing is an important part of Kiwi culture.

“The information provided by this research will ensure MAF is able to continue to sustainably manage our fisheries so that tradition can continue for many years to come,” Mr McNee says.

Other recreational fishing research projects commissioned by MAF include:
• Aerial surveys of recreational fishing vessels along the coast between North Cape and East Cape to provide information on the spatial intensity and distribution of fishing effort. Aerial counts will be combined with fisher interview data to estimate recreational catch rates in this area.
• The National Research Bureau continues to conduct a recreational fishing diary survey with about 7000 fishers on when, where (the general area, not specific fishing spots), and how they fish, along with their total catch. This survey work follows a broader survey commissioned by MAF and conducted by the National Research Bureau in 2011.
“Taken together, these surveys are part of the largest marine recreational fishing research programme ever undertaken by MAF,” says Mr McNee. “Currently we have only a limited understanding of what’s happening in our recreational fisheries, so this research is absolutely crucial to ensure good planning and decision-making.

“The purpose of the research programme is not to identify fishing at specific sites, but rather to help us to build an overall understanding of what’s happening in our recreational fisheries so we have a complete picture nationally.”

The findings from the research programme are intended to improve recreational catch estimates. The full results are expected to be released in June 2013.

To learn more about New Zealand’s marine recreational fisheries visit http://www.fish.govt.nz/en-nz/Recreational/Recreational+Research+Programme.htm?WBCMODE=PresentationUnpublished.

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