Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 


Exclusion devices required after sea lion deaths

Hon Dr Nick Smith
Minister of Conservation

Hon Nathan Guy
Minister for Primary Industries

5 September 2013

Exclusion devices required after sea lion deaths

Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith and Minister for Primary Industries Nathan Guy are requiring that all fishing vessels in the Southern Blue Whiting fishery around the Campbell Islands use Sea Lion Exclusion Devices after 16 New Zealand Sea Lion fatalities in the past three weeks.

“The fatality of 16 sea lions from fishing is unacceptable. We need to step up efforts to protect these endangered marine mammals. I am pleased the fishing industry has responded positively to the Government’s urgent request that Sea Lion Exclusion Devices be used by all vessels for the remainder of this fishing season. We have also asked officials to report on future options to better manage the interaction between the fishery and sea lions,” Dr Smith says.

“This level of fatalities is disappointing and out of step with the positive progress being made by the fishing industry in reducing sea lion by-catch,” Mr Guy says.

“This year we have 100 per cent MPI observer coverage on vessels in the Southern Blue Whiting fishery. There is also a 12 nautical mile trawling exclusion zone immediately around the Campbell Islands. I welcome agreement of the industry to use the exclusion device and their additional efforts to minimise the time trawl gear is able to be accessed by the sea lions to reduce the ongoing risks,” Mr Guy says.

The New Zealand Sea Lion is endemic to New Zealand and has an estimated population of between 10,000 and 12,000. About 80 per cent of the population live on the Auckland Islands and 20 per cent on the Campbell Islands. The species is listed as ‘vulnerable’ on the International Union for the Conservation of Nature’s (IUCN) red list and as ‘nationally critical’ on New Zealand’s Threat Classification System.

“The greatest historic risk to the New Zealand Sea Lion has been from squid fishing adjacent to Auckland Islands. We have made significant progress in addressing this with a management plan, limits on fatalities and the development of a Sea Lion Exclusion Device. This run of 16 fatalities in the Campbell Islands Southern Blue Whiting fishery is a backwards step and requires we increase our efforts to protect these sea lions,” Dr Smith says.

A Sea Lion Exclusion Device is fitted within trawling gear to prevent sea lions from being retained in the net and exits them through an escape hole. This innovative technology is new to the Southern Blue White fishery but offers the best hope of minimising sea lion fatalities.

“The risk to sea lions in the Southern Blue Whiting fishery has historically been small, averaging three fatalities per year over the past decade and zero in 2012. These 16 fatalities in the first three weeks of a six week fishing season is unprecedented. Industry and Government scientists need to work hard to understand why this is happening this season, and how it can be prevented in future,” Mr Guy says.

“We are requiring weekly reports on the fishery from officials. We are also asking officials to report on what other measures should be considered to ensure better protection for the sea lions,” the Ministers’ say.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell:
On The Last Rites For The TPP

The Trans Pacific Partnership trade deal is one of those litmus issues that has always had more to do with one’s place on the political spectrum than with any imminent reality.

To date, the Greens have opposed (a) a wide range of the leaked content of the TPP (b) the secretive way it has been negotiated and (c) the undemocratic way in which any final document would be ratified. Labour has shared some of those concerns, but while remaining generally supportive of the deal itself.

National has, for its part, been very enthusiastic about the TPP, while still giving assurances about Pharmac being protected... For the TPP’s friends and foes alike though, the end now seems nigh. More>>

 
 

Gordon Campbell: On The Farcical Elevation Of David Seymour

With the election won, it’s time to find jobs for the boy. David Seymour is the Act Party’s latest scrounger to be rewarded by the National Party, and not only with a seat in Parliament. More>>

ALSO:

As Key Mulls Joining ISIS Fighting: McCully Speech To UN Backs Security Council Bid

It is an honour to address you today on behalf of the Prime Minister and Government of New Zealand. Our General Election took place last week - our Prime Minister Rt Hon John Key is engaged in forming a government and that is why he is unable to be here in New York... More>>

ALSO:

Labour: Cunliffe Triggers Party Wide Leadership Contest

David Cunliffe has resigned as Labour Leader, but says he will seek re-election... If there is any contest the election will have to go through a process involving the party membership and union affiliates. More>>

ALSO:

Flyover Appeal: Progress And Certainty, Or Confusion And More Delays?

Lindsay Shelton: The Transport Agency, embarrassed by the rejection of its flyover alongside the Basin Reserve, says it’s appealing because the decision could “constrain progress.” Yet for most clear-sighted Wellingtonians a 300-metre-long concrete structure above Kent and Cambridge Terraces would in no way be seen as progress… More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Cunliffe’s Last Stand

Right now, embattled Labour leader David Cunliffe has three options. None of them are particularly attractive for him personally, or for the Labour Party... More>>

ALSO:

Key Seeking 'New Ideas': Look To Children’s Commissioner On Poverty - Greens

John Key should not reinvent the wheel when it comes to ideas for tackling child poverty, and instead look to the recommendations of the Children’s Commissioner’s Expert Group on Child Poverty, Green Party co-leader Metiria Turei says. More>>

ALSO:

'Safe To Re-Enter' - OIA Docs: Safety Is Absolute Priority At Pike River Mine

“We understand that the time it is taking to complete our evaluation of the risks is frustrating for the family members and we are trying to complete this work as quickly as we can,” Ms Dunphy says. “It is Solid Energy’s responsibility to make this decision and we will do so, once we have all the information required to make a fully-informed decision.” More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Parliament
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news