In Australia, the Southern and Eastern Scalefish and Shark Fishery (SESSF) is a multi-species, multi-gear, multi-jurisdictional fishery, and a key provider of fresh seafood to international and domestic markets.
The Australian Fisheries Management Authority (AFMA) collects information to measure performance against environmental, economic and social objectives. Data collection in the SESSF has historically focussed on species managed under individual transferable quota to support stock assessments required under the harvest strategy. This narrow focus has come at the expense of collecting data to also understand environmental effects and the broader impacts of the fishery on the ecosystem. Understanding environmental drivers has become increasingly important as the impacts of climate change appear to be contributing to the decline of several fish stocks along the east coast of Australia.
We would like to understand challenges faced by other jurisdictions and discuss ways to improve representative data collection to support true ecosystem-based fisheries management.
Daniel Corrie, Australian Fisheries Management Authority (AFMA), [email protected]