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New shellfish species into the QMS

6 September 2006

New shellfish species into the Quota Management System

Two new shellfish species will be introduced into the Quota Management System (QMS) this coming October - the deep water clam or ‘geoduck’ and the knobbed whelk.

"Both species are commercially valuable and sedentary, so are susceptible to localised depletion. Bringing them into the QMS will make sure harvests stay at sustainable levels," said Fisheries Minister Jim Anderton.

“People are potentially interested in both these commercially valuable fisheries, particularly in the Golden/Tasman Bay region,” Jim Anderton said. “Bringing them into the QMS means we can harvest them in a controlled and sustainable manner.

“The deep water clam is a highly valuable species, and could form the basis for a ‘boutique’ fishery, supplying markets in Asia.

“I understand these clams and whelks are both long-lived and very susceptible to localised depletion. So I have been conservative when setting catch limits for these fisheries.

“In most regions little is known about the extent of either species so low catch limits have been set; I have set higher limits for the Nelson / Marlborough region, where a little more is known about these fisheries," Jim Anderton said.

ENDS


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