Fisheries Research and Development Corporation (FRDC)
Dr Stuart Corney
The sharp decrease in catch rates in the Heard Island and Macdonald Island (HIMI) longline fishery in 2016 generated concerns among the fishing industry, management and scientists for the long-term economic viability and productivity of the Australian toothfish fisheries at HIMI.
Understanding the relationships between environmental factors and the performance of the fishery is especially important as sea surface temperature, the incidence of surface heatwaves, and environmental variability in general are predicted to increase globally under the influence of climate change.
This project characterises environmental variability within the HIMI and Macquarie Island regions, quantifying its relationship to catch rates and other fishery indicators at a number of spatial and temporal scales, identifying the possible mechanisms underpinning responses, and quantifying the likely frequency of future adverse environmental conditions at a range of temporal scales.
The new knowledge generated by this project is expected to provide timely information and advice that will allow the toothfish industry and management agencies to understand the impact of environmental variability on the fishery, for the toothfish industry to plan for future events, and to aid management agencies in developing appropriate strategies for the fishery in the face of a changing climate.
Image: Patagonian toothfish Dissostichus eleginoides (Photo: Australian Fisheries Management Authority)
Interested in this project?