Bladder kelp consultation opens
4 March 2010
The Ministry of Fisheries has today released a consultation paper on catch limits for “attached” bladder kelp on the east coast of the South Island and on the Chatham Islands.
The government announced last year that bladder kelp attached to substrate - usually the sea floor - in these areas would be introduced to the Quota Management System (QMS) on 1 October 2010.
“Seaweeds play an important role in the aquatic ecosystem, providing food, habitat and shelter for other marine animals,” said Leigh Mitchell, Ministry of Fisheries Inshore Fisheries Manager. “Internationally seaweeds also support sometimes large and highly valuable sustainable fisheries.
“The consultation paper contains a range of catch limit options for bladder kelp in the two areas. The options have been developed after careful review of the best available information and are deliberately cautious to ensure sustainability, given the ecological importance of this species, while allowing opportunity for development.”
The consultation process will run for six weeks to provide people with a good opportunity to have their say on the catch limits proposed.
Submissions close on 15 April 2010. For the consultation documents, including a map of the relevant areas, see http://www.fish.govt.nz/en-nz/Consultations/Setting+of+Management+Controls/default.htm
The government is likely to make a decision in the middle of this year.