November 22, 2016
Paua recovery halted over disputed science
The Ministry for Primary Industries has put an end to the paua recovery mission along the Kaikoura coast and closed the area for shellfish and seaweed gathering.
Volunteers, many from Christchurch, have been trying to move the paua back into the sea off the stretch of coast thrust up by the earthquake.
But MPI deputy director general Ben Dalton says ministry scientists say that’s the wrong approach, and the paua could eventually migrate on their own.
He says there will be further discussions between the recovery group and the scientists today.
"We’re just here to manage the relationship with the locals and enforce the ban but do it in a manner in which we can maintain relationships both with the guys trying to do their recovery mission and also with the local population and the local hapu," Mr Dalton says.
The ministry will mount a major research effort over the next couple of months to assess the various fisheries along the coast.
The shellfish ban is in effect for three months, and crayfish is off limits for one month.
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