- a legal showdown
This article was originally
published in The Bay Chronicle 27 January 2006
continue to decline in the Bay of Islands, says Kerikeri man
Mark Feldman, as a legal showdown looms between non-commercial
and commercial fishers.
year the Government decided to reduce the kahawai Total Allowable
Catch (TAC) by ten percent, a move which was slated by the
NZ Seafood Industry Council as unfair, unnecessary and disappointing
and they have issued a counterclaim.
move has enraged campaigners such as Mark Feldman. Mr Feldman
said this week, "Fisheries management doesn't know how
many fish are in the water but are arrogant enough to think
they can manage a fishery on a knife edge basis."
NZ Big Game Fishing Council agree that kahawai numbers are
France with a late spring kahawai
|The Council says its
members have reported a huge decline in the availability of
kahawai since the late 1980s and in response to the commercial
operators counterclaim, NZ Recreational Fishing Council and
the NZ Big Game Fishing Council have now lodged an application
to the High Court, hoping to 'better define the public's right
to fish' and ensure more fish are left in the sea.
case is backed by Ngapuhi and the advocacy group "option4",
while the commercial fishing industry is represented by Sanford
and the Sealord Group and Pelagic and Tuna Ltd.
Feldman, a scientist and fishing writer, has been campaigning for
a reduction in commercial take of kahawai for the past 20 years.
He points out that kahawai deteriorate rapidly, and they are worth
much more to recreational fishers and the tourism industry than
to commercial fishers.
are worth almost nothing to the commercial operators. There seems
to be no bounds to their greed. They don't want to give anything
up. It is beyond my comprehension and I see it as the height of
is seen as a test case - not just about the kahawai but about how
the Minister of Fisheries takes into account the public's right
to fish under the fisheries legislation.
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