Submission on SNA1 - Quota Management of Snapper

The Ministry of Primary Industries sought feedback in 2013 from tangata whenua and stakeholders on proposed changes to the sustainability measures and management controls of selected fish stocks.

The review is an annual process that looks at catch limits to ensure sustainable utilisation of fisheries resources.  SNA1 is an area that extends from the top of the north island to eastern bay of plenty.  This area takes in the east and west coasts of the Coromandel and Haruaki Gulf. 

An overview of the issue is provided in this report. Full consultation documents (which include scientific background information) can be found on the ministry's website. 

The year's review of SNA1 was triggered by new information on the status of the stock and current catch levels.

These long-term sustainable fish targets are being further considered and consulted on over the next two years.  In the interim, a long-term sustainably target has been set at 40% of "before fished" levels. 

The matter for consultation is not the long-term sustainable fish targets (as that will be consulted on later), but the achievement of this target does have an impact on bag size (i.e. numbers of fish) and/or fish length, and this is what they are seeking feedback on.

The Ministry of Primary Industries are asking feedback on a range of options around the Total Allowable catch of snapper (both for Recreation and Commercial fishing), as well as how this will be managed or enforced.

The moveable elements are:

  • Total allowable catch (includes recreational and commercial allowances)
  • Bag size
  • Fish length
Some facts about the current situation
  • The Thames-Coromandel falls within SNA1. This is a term used by the Ministry to  segment quotas of different types of fish around the country. SNA1 relates to snapper.
  • Currently the total allowable catch in SNA1 (includes Auckland Hauraki and Bay of  Plenty) set in 1997 is 7550 tonnes.
  • Currently, the recreational total allowable catch is 2600 tonnes. Restricted by bag  limit of 9 per person and 27cm minimum legal size
  • Currently, the commercial total allowable catch is 4950 tonnes.  Restricted by a 25cm minimum legal size