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Science Alert: Experts Respond

Is whitebaiting sustainable? Expert Reaction

Sarah-Jane O'Connor posted in on December 7th, 2016.

The whitebait season closed around most of the country last week, with several regions reporting ‘lacklustre’ catch this year. The whitebait fry – considered a delicacy by many – are the juveniles of five species of galaxiid, four of which are considered threatened or declining. The SMC asked freshwater experts for their views on the sustainability […]

Myths no help to struggling sea lions – Jim Roberts

Sarah-Jane O'Connor posted in on September 12th, 2016.

Myths about sea lions, sparked by a consultation paper out for public comment, are counterproductive to the conservation of the species, writes Niwa fisheries scientist Dr Jim Roberts. An excerpt (read in full…) Myth – NZ sea lions mainly eat squid Southern arrow squid make up less than one-fifth of their diet. Furthermore, survival and […]

Fish report authors respond to criticisms – NZ Herald

John Kerr posted in on May 24th, 2016.

The authors of a report reconstructing the history of New Zealand’s fisheries catch – and finding it out of step with official figures – have responded to to some of the criticisms levelled at their research. You can read earlier expert commentary on the report collected by the SMC and a response from the Ministry […]

UPDATED: NZ Fisheries catch under-reported – Expert reaction

John Kerr posted in on May 16th, 2016.

Updated: Response from MPI added A new study suggests that New Zealand’s total fisheries catch since 1950 is 2.7 times higher than officially reported. Between 1950 and 2013, 24.7 million tonnes of fish went unreported, compared to the 15.3 million that was officially reported to the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation, the international research led […]

State of the Environment report – Expert reaction

John Kerr posted in on October 21st, 2015.

The Government today launched a new environmental report – Environment Aotearoa 2015 – showing the overall state of our environment. The document, jointly released by Statistics New Zealand and the Ministry for the Environment, is the first ‘State of the Environment’ report since 2007. Environment Aotearoa 2015 focuses on five areas or ‘domains’– air, atmosphere and […]

NZ Sea Lion now ‘Endangered’ – Expert reaction

John Kerr posted in on June 23rd, 2015.

The status of the New Zealand Sea Lion has moved from ‘Vulnerable’ to the more serious ‘Endangered’ category in the latest update of the IUCN’s Red List. The Red List, maintained by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) is considered the definitive international standard for species extinction risk, covering 77,340 species. The latest […]

Endangered Maui’s dolphin now on the cusp of extinction

Laura Goodall posted in on May 29th, 2015.

A new warning has sounded for the world’s smallest dolphin, with a researcher now reporting there are less than 50 Maui’s dolphins left. The New Zealand Herald reports that Dr Barbara Maas of the NABU International Nature Conservation Foundation and Otago University’s Professor Liz Slooten are presenting new research during discussions with 200 leading cetacean […]

In the news: Report calls for native eel protection

John Kerr posted in on April 18th, 2013.

Dr Jan Wright, Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment is calling for a moratorium on the fishing of native longfin eels, citing research showing the species is in decline. The Commissioner’s report, ‘On a pathway to extinction? An investigation into the status and management of the longfin eel‘, highlighted new research detailing the decline of native […]

Protecting the Maui’s dolphin in Auckland

John Kerr posted in on November 2nd, 2012.

Writing for Fairfax’s Auckland Now, reporter Delwyn Dickey examines the science and politics of protecting the Maui’s dolphin. An excerpt (read in full here): The Maui’s dolphin is heading for extinction under government proposals to protect it on Auckland’s doorstep. That’s the view of the council’s environment and sustainability forum chairman and Albany Ward councillor […]

No safety net for sea lions in fisheries – expert

John Kerr posted in on August 3rd, 2012.

Devices installed in squid trawling nets to prevent sea lion bycatch lack evidence that they actually prevent sea lion deaths, according to an expert. This week Primary Industries Minister David Carter released a management decision for a key squid fishery near the Auckland Islands, claiming that it reflects new research showing that devices that reduce unintentional […]

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