New rock lobster rules for Fiordland
2 September 2009
Recreational fishers gathering rock lobster in the Fiordland Marine Area will have greater flexibility to store their live catch with new rules for holding pots.
New rules come into affect on 1 October 2009 allowing recreational fishers within the Fiordland Marine Area to use one rock lobster holding pot per person or a maximum of two holding pots per vessel where there are two or more persons. The rule changes were initiated by the Fiordland Marine Guardians.
The new rules expressly provide for separate holding pots in the Fiordland area, meaning holding pots will no longer be counted against rock lobster catching pot limits and will not be required to have escape gaps. New marking requirements for holding pots will apply, however.
Ministry of Fisheries, Inshore Manager, Leigh Mitchell says recreational fishers on extended fishing trips over several days will now have greater ability to keep their rock lobster catch fresh until they return home.
The Fiordland Marine Area is one of the few places nationwide where holding pots are commonly and regularly used by recreational fishers. Due to the area’s remoteness and access constraints, holding pots are a practical solution to the absence of freezer storage.
However, Ms Mitchell cautions fishers to still fish with sustainability in mind and to be aware that the current recreational daily and accumulation limits still apply.
Within the Fiordland Marine Area each recreational fisher is able to take a daily limit of six rock lobsters (with a maximum of three taken from the inner fiords). An accumulation limit of 15 rock lobsters taken over three or more days is allowable provided catch labelling requirements are met.
Further detail on fishing rules in the Fiordland Marine Area are found here >>>