17 Feb 2014

Calls for lifting longline fishing ban in American Samoa

12:04 pm on 17 February 2014

Fishers in American Samoa have called for the temporary lifting of a ban on fishing within fifty kilometres of the territory.

The Tautai o Samoa Longline and Fishing Association has asked the Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council for a temporary waiver of the regulations.

It says the request is to allow a set time for larger vessels to access closed areas for a short period.

The group said larger longliners target albacore which is a highly migratory species caught at different depths from other species.

They say it's not likely that albacore have been accumulating in these closed areas, but having access would allow the vessels to follow schools of the fish through such areas.

They say a temporary moratorium would allow essential data to be collected to assist with affectively managing ocean resources.