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Technical annual report 2000-01



Technical annual report 2000-01


Dept. of Regional Development, Primary Industry, Fisheries and Resources technical annual report; Department of Regional Development, Primary Industry, Fisheries and Resources technical and annual report; Reports; PublicationNT; Technical bulletin (Northern Territory. Dept. of Primary Industry and Fisheries) ; no. 295




Made available via the Publications (Legal Deposit) Act 2004 (NT).






Agriculture -- Northern Territory -- Periodicals; Fisheries -- Northern Territory -- Periodicals

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Dept. of Primary Industry and Fisheries

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Technical bulletin (Northern Territory. Dept. of Primary Industry and Fisheries) ; no. 295



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Department of Primary Industry and Fisheries 2 Introduction: The Northern Territory Coastal Line Fishery is a multi-species inshore fishery; targeting reef associated species such as black jewfish, golden snapper, cod, shark, other small snappers and emperors and some pelagic species such as trevally and queenfish. Four major sectors utilise this fishery including the commercial, recreational and traditional fishers as well as fishing tour operators (charter). The Fishery operates in waters from Queensland to the WA border and is managed by the Northern Territory. Fishing activity is restricted to within 15 nm of the coastline. Within this zone, all NT waters are generally open, with some restrictions imposed in areas such as Aboriginal lands or waters, Aquatic Reserves and National Parks. A major workshop was held in Darwin during 1996 to provide advice on the status of NT fish stocks, including the Coastal Line Fishery. Professor Carl Walters, an internationally recognised expert on fisheries stock assessment, led the review and found that although the fishery was not heavily exploited, there were signs of sequential depletion, particularly around major population centres. He warned that at some time in the future, with the development of new fishing techniques or an increase in effort, stocks could be threatened. Using the limited data available, an annual estimate of between 100 1,000 tonnes was derived. The commercial catch for the Coastal Line Fishery increased by approximately 50% in 2000. Corresponding recreational estimates are only available for 1995, gathered during the first survey to estimate the impacts of recreational fishing within NT waters. FISHCOUNT indicated that the estimated NT recreational catch for inshore fish species was approximately six times greater than the commercial coastal line catch. A second survey is being conducted now. The results are expected to be released in early 2002. Profile of the Fishery: Catch and Effort The commercial catch for the coastal line fishery has increased from 97.9 tonnes in 1999 to 152 tonnes in 2000 (Figure 1.). Fishing effort is recorded as hook days (HD), which equates to the total number of hooks in the water per day over the entire fishery. Fishing effort was high in the early developmental years of the fishery, however effort has remained low over the past few years and does not reflect the recent increase in catch. F 300 40 66 igure 1. Catch, effort and CPUE for the commercial fishery 1983 2000 0 50 100 150 200 250 19 90 19 91 19 92 19 93 19 94 19 95 19 96 19 97 19 98 19 99 20 00 C at ch ( t) a n d E ff o rt ( H o o kd ay /1 00 0) 0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 C P U E ( kg /h o o kd ay ) Tonnes Hookday CPUE