University Of Tasmania

File(s) under permanent embargo

Monitoring of major by-catch species in the Heard Island and McDonald Islands fisheries

conference contribution
posted on 2023-05-23, 14:09 authored by Dell, J, Nowara, G, Dale MaschetteDale Maschette, Farmer, B, Woodcock, E, Ziegler, P, Welsford, D
Conservation of biodiversity and the sustainable use of living marine resources have been central management goals at Heard Island and McDonald Islands (HIMI) since Australian-managed commercial trawl, and later longline, fisheries for Patagonian toothfish (Dissostichus eleginoides) and a commercial trawl fishery for mackerel icefish (Champsocephalus gunnari) commenced in 1997. International high-seas fishing occurred in the region prior to the declaration of the Australian Fishing Zone (AFZ) and later exclusion economic zone (EEZ) around HIMI in 1979 (Duhamel and Williams, 2011). However, following these events, the science and management of the living marine resources at HIMI were initiated before the Australian fishery commenced in 1997, a rare occurrence in national and global fisheries. All activities within the Southern Ocean AFZ are governed by the Australian Fisheries Management Act (1991), the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act (1999) and the Antarctic Marine Living Resources Conservation Act (1981), which establishes the processes for applying conservation measures of the Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR) under Australian law. The key principles and critical developments in precautionary by-catch management at HIMI are summarised in the proceedings of the first Kerguelen Plateau symposium (Duhamel and Welsford, 2011). The Australian by-catch policy is based around the precautionary approach and risk minimisation. CCAMLR has previously identified three main steps to minimise by-catch: (i) avoidance, (ii) mitigation and (iii) the setting of sustainable by-catch limits if mortality is not preventable (SC-CAMLR-XXII, paragraph 5.230). There is a shared acknowledgement that by-catch should not unduly impede fishing operations.


Fisheries Research & Development Corporation


Publication title

The Kerguelen Plateau: Marine Ecosystems and Fisheries - Proceedings of the Second Symposium


D Welsford, J Dell and G Duhamel






Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies


Australian Antarctic Division

Place of publication


Event title

The Kerguelen Plateau: Marine Ecosystems and Fisheries

Event Venue

Hobart, Tasmania

Date of Event (Start Date)


Date of Event (End Date)


Rights statement

Copyright 2019 Commonwealth of Australia.

Repository Status

  • Restricted

Socio-economic Objectives

Assessment and management of coastal and estuarine ecosystems; Biodiversity in Antarctic and Southern Ocean environments