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Changes to recreational set netting for the top of the East Coast of the South Island 

Thursday 6 December

Changes to recreational set netting regulations will come into effect on 3 January 2013.

These changes relate to decisions made by the former Minister of Fisheries, Hon Phil Heatley, in 2011 following a High Court decision.

Recreational fishers will be permitted to use set nets in a small defined area at the top of the East Coast of the South Island between 1 January and 30 April each year. However, in order to complete the required administrative steps this year, the amended regulations will come into effect 3 January 2013.

Scott Gallacher, Acting Director General, MPI says, “Commercial set netting is already permitted in the area, and this is an extension of these rights to recreational fishers for the first four months of the year”.

Recreational set netters will be required to set their nets within 200 metres from the mean high-water mark and must stay with their nets at all times once the net has been set.

The additional rules for recreational fishers have been designed carefully to control the risk to Hector’s dolphins. There are no known populations of Hector’s dolphins in the defined area. The dolphins may use the area to travel between populations to the north and south.

MPI staff will monitor the area over the summer months to ensure compliance with the new rules.

For further information on the changes to the recreational set net regulations please visit http://www.fish.govt.nz/en-nz/Recreational/Fishery+Management+Areas/Challenger/Closed+and+Restricted+Areas.htm  

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James Sygrove, Senior Communications Adviser
Telephone: 04-894 0255 or 021 195 0255
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Updated : 6 December 2012