Dr Jaime McAllister, Gary Carlos, Dr Craig Mundy
Sampling of commercial abalone catches at processing factories has been performed since the 1970s to provide size composition data used in the Abalone Fishery Assessment.
The project involves factory staff measuring 100 randomly-selected abalone from a fishers’ catch using an electronic measuring board, and covers catches from all abalone quota zones and seasons.
Length frequency catch data provide important size structure information necessary for determining the relative contribution of different size classes in supporting the fishery and in assessing the resilience of the fishery to sustain different levels of fishing pressure.
More recently the project has focused on sampling catches from the Eastern Zone in response to declining catches and environmental stresses, and indicates this zone is becoming increasingly reliant on new recruits entering the fishery.
These data are further supported by our fishery independent surveys which collect size structure information on sub-legal abalone not observed as part of the processor catch sampling project.
Recent developments in the electronic measuring boards, such as cellular data transfer to IMAS and the ability to integrate weighing scales, are enabling more timely data capture and analysis for reporting.
Processors interested in participating in this program can talk to Jaime McAllister at IMAS on 6226 8382 or email Jaime.McAllister@utas.edu.au
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