Fishing industry upset by extension of ban

By ABC News,21. October 2011

The shark and gillnet fishing industry is angry at a Australian Fisheries Management Authority (AFMA) decision to enforce larger non- fishing boundaries for a further 18 months.

The Authority initially set up the trial near sea lion colonies last April, in an effort to minimise sea lion deaths.

It says it will use the extension to collect more data, despite only one sea lion death during the trial.

Authority CEO James Findlay has defended the extension.

“AFMA is working with scientists, the industry and other stakeholders to develop longer-term arrangements based on the additional data collection,” he said.

“The observers on the boats are showing us what’s working and what might not work and we really are hoping in the long term to come up with a way to catch sharks without catching sea lions.”

Kyri Toumazis from the Shark and Gillnet Fisherman’s Association says fishing crews are being unnecessarily punished.

“The extra 18 months will put such a financial burden on everyone that some of the operators are not going to be viable any more and have to look to look for alternative business to put the food on the table,” he said.

Note: Please see also the previous post 24. Sept 2011 Gummy Shark Fishery closed to protect Dolphins in Australia

Source: ABC News

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