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Seasick: Episode 3 - Recreational Fishing and Marine Reserves

by stuff.co.nz 7 Jun 21:53 NZST 7 June 2022
Are recreational fishing limits too generous - and how can they be policed? © SeaSick

New Zealand has a consistently high rate of boat ownership per capita and with the Hauraki Gulf on the doorstep of our biggest city, recreational fishing is a popular past time.

We investigate how the recreational fishing catch is measured by science, whether the fishing limits are too generous and how rec fishers can fish better. We look into marine reserves, the many forms they can take and the various opinions on them.

What is Seasick?

The Hauraki Gulf Marine Park was the first marine park established in New Zealand. It reaches from Te Arai to Waihi in the North Island, an area of more than 1.2 million hectares which includes more than 50 islands. It is a unique, bio-diverse and a much-loved body of water, but it is in a state of ecological collapse.

Seasick - Saving the Hauraki Gulf is a seven part series initiated by the release of many bleak reports on the state of the gulf. The alarming decrease in crayfish, paua, scallops, fish stocks – most sealife. How has it come to this? Who are the culprits and what can be done?

Over 18 months we have interviewed more than 70 people – all with strong, well-informed, points of view.

We investigate the history of fishing, commercial and recreational, fisheries management in general, the Quota Management System and look at marine reserves. Most agree with more marine protection but there is conflict over what that should look like.

It seems apparent that not enough has been done fast enough. Time is running out to save the Hauraki Gulf. There are stories of hope – we just hope they will be in time.

Brought to you by Stuff, NZ on Air, Republic Films and Foundation North.

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