29 Aug 2015

Too many undersized snapper caught - MPI

9:32 am on 29 August 2015

The Ministry for Primary Industries says the number of undersized snapper being caught by commercial fishers is still too high.

Large predatory snapper are a rare sight in the Hauraki Gulf these days due to heavy fishing pressure, but they are common inside marine reserves such as the Goat Island marine reserve at Leigh.

Photo: Paul Caiger

In the year to the end of February, 144 tonnes of fish caught were deemed to be too small.

The Ministry last year started monitoring the number of undersized snapper caught and released between the Bay of Plenty and the top of the North Island.

The Ministry's manager of inshore fisheries Steve Halley said the undersized fish were about three percent of the 8,000 tonnes caught overall.

Mr Halley said those levels did not cause concern for sustainability, but the Ministry was still not satisfied with them.