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Managing Catch Limits in Multi-Species, ITQ Fisheries Public Deposited

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  • Management of individual species in a multi-species fishery poses a number of challenges for fishery management systems, including the problem of managing fish bycatch. Fish bycatch is sometimes identified as a particular problem associated with management systems based on individual transferable quotas (ITQs) but this has not always proven to be correct. Since the introduction of an ITQ-based fishery management system 15 years ago, New Zealand has used a number of mechanisms to manage fish bycatch, with variable success. In 2001, the system by which fishers’ catches are balanced against their catching rights was significantly modified. Changes include the implementation of a fee schedule requiring fishers to pay higher fees for increased levels of catch in excess of the catching right they hold. This is designed to provide fishers with an economic disincentive to target fish stocks for which they have no catching right. The new catch-balancing regime has only been in operation for 8 months but initial results are encouraging. There are anecdotal reports of fishers shifting to alternative fishing grounds to avoid catching species for which they have insufficient catching rights and there is no evidence of increased discarding. The real test of the regime will occur when a shortage of catching rights for a bycatch species severely constrains a major target fishery.
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  • Peacey, Jonathan. 2002. Managing Catch Limits in Multi-Species, ITQ Fisheries. In: Proceedings of the Eleventh Biennial Conference of the International Institute of Fisheries Economics and Trade, August 19-22, 2002, Wellington, New Zealand: Fisheries in the Global Economy. Compiled by Ann L. Shriver. International Institute of Fisheries Economics & Trade, Corvallis, Oregon, USA, 2002. CD ROM.
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