Project number: 2018-114
Project Status:
Completed
Budget expenditure: $165,000.00
Principal Investigator: Steve J. Kennelly
Organisation: IC Independent Consulting Pty Ltd
Project start/end date: 31 Dec 2018 - 30 Dec 2019
Contact:
FRDC

Need

In the recently completed project 2015/208 “Developing a National Bycatch Reporting System”, we derived estimates of bycatch and discards for 4 case-study jurisdictions (with associated variances) as well as metrics regarding the quality of the data used. The jurisdictions done were New South Wales, Tasmania, Queensland and the Northern Territory. But that work completed only half the story. This present project is to complete the task by applying the methodology developed in the previous project to the remaining 4 jurisdictions: The Commonwealth, Victoria, South Australia and Western Australia. By adding estimates from these jurisdictions to those derived earlier, this current project will produce the first complete, national bycatch report for the country. An advantage with this approach is that the new project will only cost a fraction of that of the previous project because most of the development work is complete. The result will be Australia's First National Bycatch Report and a process by which Australia's (and the world's) stakeholders can monitor and track Australia's management of bycatch. This should improve the standing of our fisheries internationally, to various eco-labelling organisations and the general public.

Objectives

1. Collect, synthesis and analyse catch, effort and bycatch data from the Commonwealth, Victoria, South Australia and Western Australia
2. Derive bycatch estimates for general discards and ETP species, with associated variances and quality metrics for each jurisdiction
3. Combine the estimates from 2 above with those from the previous project to produce Australia's first National Bycatch Report

Final report

ISBN: 978-0-9924930-9-7
Author: Steven J Kennelly
Final Report • 2020-11-30 • 378.05 KB
2018-114-DLD.pdf

Summary

Bycatch (non-targeted organisms that are unintentionally caught when fishing for particular species or sizes of species) remains an important issue concerning the world’s fisheries. Discards are considered the most important component of bycatch because they represent a perceived wastage of seafood resources as well as the potential to include Threatened, Endangered and Protected Species (TEPS), attracting significant interest and controversy from many stakeholders. There is now growing acceptance and international, regional and national agreements and instruments that encourage and/or require governments to report on the status of bycatches.

This report that arose from this project and its precursor “Developing a National Bycatch Reporting System” (FRDC Project 2015-208) constitutes Australia’s first national attempt to report on bycatch from its commercial fisheries. It is the result of the application of a 5-step methodology developed in the first project.
This project has yielded: (i) a baseline to be used by Australia in the future to track performance in managing discards, TEPS interactions and the quality of its bycatch information; (ii) the identification of key gaps in information where future work to monitor and reduce discards should focus; and (iii) a methodology that may be used by other countries and jurisdictions to estimate and report on bycatch to various entities and processes including stock assessments, Ecosystem-based Fisheries Management initiatives, FAO’s Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries, assessments by eco-labelling organisations, the EU’s Common Fisheries Policy and its Landing Obligation, as well as the most important stakeholders of all – the perpetual owners of all fisheries discards and TEPS – the general public.
Final Report • 2020-11-30 • 2.36 MB
2018-114 Australia's First National Bycatch Report.pdf

Summary

This report constitutes Australia’s first national attempt to report on bycatch from its commercial fisheries. It is the result of the application of the following 5-step methodology:
1. Identify all individual fisheries (and the fishing methods used in them) for each jurisdiction and the annual landings for each. Express these data as averages with associated standard errors (SEs).
2. Gather all available papers, reports and datasets on fisheries discards and TEPS interactions in each jurisdiction. From these, derive retained:discard ratios for each fishery/method and express these as averages (if multiple ratios exist) with associated SEs.
3. For those fisheries/methods that lack ratios in Step 2, identify and include any substitute ratios from similar fisheries/methods from other jurisdictions.
4. Multiply the average ratios from Steps 2 and 3 by the average landings data from Step 1 to obtain total estimated annual discards for each fishery/method and add these together to get jurisdictional totals with appropriate SEs.
5. Apply the steps in the USA’s Tier Classification Scheme 
 
This report has yielded: (i) a baseline to be used by Australia’s jurisdictions in the future to track performance in managing discards, TEPS interactions and the quality of bycatch information; (ii) the identification of key gaps in information where future work to monitor and reduce discards should focus; and (iii) a methodology that may be used by other countries and jurisdictions to estimate and report on bycatch to various entities and processes including stock assessments, Ecosystem-based Fisheries Management initiatives, FAO’s Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries, assessments by eco-labelling organisations, the EU’s Common Fisheries Policy and its Landing Obligation, as well as the most important stakeholders of all – the perpetual owners of all fisheries discards and TEPS – the general public. 

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