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Rock lobster fishers urged to go easy

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 20/12/2016

© Ron D'Raine/Bloomberg Recreational fishers in Kaikoura are being urged to act responsibly when catching rock lobster to help the fishery recover from the November earthquake.

The temporary ban on collecting rock lobster (crayfish) along the east coast of the South Island has now been lifted.

Ministry of Primary Industries acting compliance director Gary Orr says a post-quake scientific survey indicated that the fishery has come through in relatively good shape, but still needed looking after.

"Although the fishery is reopened, we really encourage people to maybe consider limiting their take over summer.," he said.

"Only take what you need."

Mr Orr said the message applied around the country, because people might choose not to fish in the Kaikoura region this summer but go elsewhere, putting pressure on those areas.

The daily bag limit for rock lobster in the Kaikoura fishery is six for recreational fishers.

A closure notice remains in effect for all remaining shellfish and seaweed species until February 20. Scampi and finfish are excluded from the closures.

Mr Orr said MPI would continue to have additional fishery officers along the coast to ensure compliance.

"Our message is very clear: If you break the law, you'll face the consequences."

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