National Fisherman

Australia banned supertrawlers fishing in its southern waters for two years on Monday, saying there was uncertainty about the impact of such large vessels on species such as dolphins and seals.

Environment Minister Tony Burke in September blocked the 9,500-tonne, 143-metre (469-foot) Abel Tasman from operating for 60 days until more scientific research was completed.

The Dutch-owned vessel, previously known as the Margiris, planned to trawl off Tasmania, but environmental campaign group Greenpeace voiced fears its haul could include threatened species in its by-catch and deplete fish stocks.

On Monday Burke extended the ban -- which covers the Small Pelagic Fishery running along the country's southern coast from near Perth in the west almost to the Queensland border in the east -- for the maximum 24 months allowed.

Read the full story at Bay Ledger News Zone>>

Inside the Industry

NMFS recently released a draft action plan for fish discard and release mortality science, creating a list of actions that they hope can better inform fisheries.

We know that fishermen have to deal with bycatch by discarding or releasing unwanted catch overboard, but there is a data gap regarding how those fish survive.


A new study has identified a set of features common to all ocean ecosystems that provide a visual diagnosis of the health of the underwater environment coastal communities rely on.

Together, the features detail cumulative effects of threats -- such as overfishing, pollution, and invasive species,  allowing responders to act faster to increase ocean resiliency and sustainability.

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