GAB Bycatch

Assessment of Bycatch in the Great Australian Bight Trawl Fishery

Industry has recognised the need for, and strongly supported the assessment and quantification of bycatch in the GABTF and has been willing to have observers onboard for the duration of the project. The results of this study provide AFMA, industry and scientists with detailed information on the quantity and species composition of the retained and discarded catch in the Great Australian Bight Trawl fishery, according to Zone (spatial) and Season (Temporal). This information can now be assessed with a view to implementing appropriate mitigation actions to reduce bycatch and minimise the impact of fishing gear on non-target species and the marine environment. The results of the study also provide biological data on the target species as well as length-frequency distribution data for target and non-target species in the GABTF. This information will add to current knowledge and will be incorporated into stock assessments and age-structured models, which are currently being developed.