Temporary closure of the Southern Scallop (SCA 7) Fishery

Closing Date:

Contact: Fisheries Management

Email: FMSubmissions@mpi.govt.nz

Have your say

Fisheries New Zealand is seeking information and views from tangata whenua and others on whether a further closure of the Southern Scallop Fishery (SCA 7) is appropriate.  

What we're proposing

We want your feedback on whether:

  • a further temporary closure of the Southern Scallop Fishery (SCA 7) should be implemented for the coming scallop season, which starts on 15 July 2018.
  • the small Port Underwood recreational fishery, which is immediately adjacent to (but not part of) SCA 7, should also be closed to protect it from increased harvest pressure.

The closures would be in place from the start of the coming season, 15 July 2018, until an opening regime has been developed and implemented. Under the proposals, you would not be able to take any scallops during the period of the temporary closure. However, Fisheries New Zealand considers this would be balanced by improved fishery productivity in the future.

Full details are in the consultation document.

Consultation document

Low stock levels behind the proposals

Scientific surveys have shown a significant decline in scallop abundance over the past 10 years. Scallop biomass in Golden and Tasman Bays collapsed in the 2000s and has remained at negligible levels since then.  Biomass in the Marlborough Sounds followed a declining trend from 2009 to 2015. As a result SCA 7 has been closed to commercial and recreational scallop fishing for the past two seasons (2016 and 2017)

A survey in January 2017 suggested biomass in the Marlborough Sounds had stabilised, and a new survey in January 2018 indicated an increase in biomass in some scallop beds in the outer Marlborough Sounds. However, the overall biomass of scallops remains low and is not statistically significantly different from previous surveys. High densities of scallops remain confined to relatively few beds in the outer Marlborough Sounds.  Overall, the SCA 7 stock is still likely to be below the hard limit, the biological reference point at which it is Fisheries New Zealand policy that a closure should be considered.

Making your submission

Email your feedback on the consultation document by 5pm on 25 June 2018 to FMSubmissions@mpi.govt.nz

Make sure you include in your submission:

  • the title of the consultation document in the subject line of your email
  • your name and title (if applicable)
  • your organisation's name (if applicable)
  • your address.

For your convenience, you can download a submission form.  You are not required to use this form.

While we prefer online submissions, you can send your submission by post to:

Fisheries Management
Fisheries New Zealand
PO Box 2526
Wellington 6140
New Zealand.

Submissions are public information

Note, that any submission you make becomes public information. People can ask for copies of submissions under the Official Information Act 1982 (OIA). The OIA says we have to make submissions available unless we have a good reason for withholding it (refer to sections 6 and 9 of the OIA).

Tell us if you think there are grounds to withhold specific information in your submission. Reasons might include that it's commercially sensitive or it's personal information. However, any decision Fisheries New Zealand makes to withhold information can be reviewed by the Ombudsman, who may tell us to release it.

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