This circular is issued by the Chief Executive of the Ministry for Primary Industries under Regulation 58CA of the Fisheries (Commercial Fishing) Regulations 2001.
This circular is the Fisheries (Sea Lion Exclusion Device) Circular 2021.
This circular comes into force on 12 January 2022.
If a term that is used in this circular is defined in the Fisheries Act 1996, or Fisheries (Commercial Fishing) Regulations 2001, that term carries the same meaning as in those provisions.
4. Sea Lion Exclusion Device Specifications
For the purposes of regulation 58CA of Fisheries (Commercial Fishing) Regulations 2001, the Sea Lion Exclusion Device must be constructed in such a way that it:
- allows a sea lion to escape: and
- includes a grid, escape hole, hood, kite and floats that meet the following specifications:
- The Sea Lion Exclusion Device must be inserted into the lengthener such that the escape hole is in the upper surface (panel) of the lengthener.
- No extra panels or mesh material may be fitted inside the net or lengthener before the Sea Lion Exclusion Device.
- The lengthener section of net must have a minimum of 2 seams (i.e selvedges or panels).
- The metal grid must be inserted into the lengthener section of net at 45° ± 5° from the vertical with the top of the grid closest to the cod-end section of the trawl net.
- The grid must be hinged horizontally between sections.
- The grid must have a minimum of two sections.
- The grid must have a solid stainless-steel bar that forms the frame around the grid. This frame steel bar must be a minimum of 20mm in diameter.
- The grid frame must be continuously sewn to the net meshes around its outer edge.
- The grid must contain vertical bars that should be evenly spaced and must be at a maximum interval (i.e. between the bars) distance of 23cm.
- It may be necessary to have a different spacing between the final bars and the grid frame and this spacing must be less than 23cm between the last vertical bar and the grid frame.
The Escape Hole
- The escape hole must be triangular in shape and cut into the upper surface of the lengthener section.
- The escape hole must be a minimum of 130cm in width, measured along the top frame bar of the grid.
- The apex of the escape hole triangle must be a minimum of 150cm forward from the centre of the base of the triangle.
- The hood is a hood-shaped mesh scoop which must be attached above the escape hole.
- The leading-edge of the hood (that is closest to the vessel) must be open and facing into the water-flow when the gear is fishing. The trailing part of the hood (that is closest to the cod-end) must be attached to the top frame bar of the grid.
- The leading-edge of the hood must be a minimum of 90cm in height when fully open.
- The leading-edge rope around the mouth of the hood must be a minimum of 320cm in length after attachment of the kite (see below) and floats.
- The hood must have a minimum length of 170cm between the centre of the leading edge of the kite and the top of the grid bar.
- The leading corners of the hood must extend forward and be attached to either side of the escape hole.
- The hood must have a semi-rigid kite 220cm (± 10%) in length and 32cm (± 10%) in width.
- The kite must be attached to the underside of the hood.
- All edges of the kite must be attached to the hood netting.
- At least three floats of between 19cm and 30cm in diameter must be attached to the leading edge of the kite.
- One float must be in the centre of the kite length and the other two floats equidistant between the centre float and each end of the kite.
- Floats must not be fitted inside the lengthener in front of the grid.
Dated at Wellington this 16th day of December 2021.
RAY SMITH, Director-General, Ministry for Primary Industries.