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2012 ACL Specification

At the 152nd meeting, the Council specified Annual Catch Limits for all management unit species in the Western Pacific region for fishing year 2012. The ACLs (expressed in pounds) are summarized in the table shown below:

 

2012 Annual   Catch Limits in Pounds for   WPR Insular Fisheries in EEZ   Waters

Fishery Federally Managed   Species

Am Samoa

CNMI

Guam

Hawai`i

Bottomfish Bottomfish (all managed
species)

99,200

182,500

48,200

Bottomfish   (Deep 7 species)

325,000

Bottomfish (non-Deep7
species)

135,000

Crustacean Deepwater Shrimp

80,000

275,570

48,488

250,773

Spiny Lobster

2,300

5,500

2,700

10,000

Slipper Lobster

30

60

20

280

Kona Crabs

3,200

6,300

1,900

27,600

Other Crustacean

2,248

5,523

20,686

Precious Coral Black   Coral

1,742

2,100

700

`Au`au   Channel  2,500

Exploratory   Area

2,205

1,000

1,000

2,205

Pink/Bamboo   Coral

Makapu`u Bed 2,205/551

180-Fathom Bank 489/123

Brooks Bank 979/245

Ka`ena Point  Bed 148/37

Ke`ahole Bed 148/37

Coral Reef Ecosystem Acanthuridae – surgeonfish

19,516

6,884

70,702

80,545

Lutjanidae – snapper

18,839

3,905

17,726

65,102

Mullidae – goatfish

3,670

25,367

125,813

Mollusk

16,694

4,446

21,941

28,765

Carangidae – jacks

9,490

21,512

45,377

193,423

Lethrinidae – emperor

7,350

27,466

38,720

Scaridae – parrotfish

8,145

3,784

28,649

33,326

Serranidae – grouper

5,600

5,519

17,958

Holocentridae – squirrelfish

2,585

8,300

44,122

Mugilidae – mullet

2,857

3,308

15,032

41,112

Siganidae – rabbitfish

2,537

26,120

Kyphosidae – chubs/rudderfish

13,247

Labridae – wrasse

5,195

Reef Sharks

1,309

5,600

6,942

111,566

Bumphead parrotfish

235

797

Humphead wrasse

1,743

2,009

1,960

Selar crumenopthalmus (akule)

8,396

7,459

56,514

651,292

Decapterus macarellus (opelu)

393,563

Algae

5,329

Other coral   reef managed
species

18,910

9,820

83,214

142,282

For the published Federal Register Notice of the 2012 ACL Specification [click here]

 

Evaluation of 2012 catches relative to ACLs

Jurisdiction Federally   Managed Species

ACL   (lbs)

Catch   (lbs)

Overage

Guam Selar crumenopthalmus (atulai)

56,514

120,513

63,999

Mugilidae – mullets

15,032

16,441

1,409

CNMI Selar. crumenopthalmus-atule

7,459

14,245

6,786

Serranidae-groupers

5,519

6,260

741

Mollusk-turbo snails,   octopus, giant clam

4,446

5,620

1,174

Siganidae-rabbitfish

2,537

2,577

40

Hawaii Non deep 7 stock complex

135,000

140,258

5,258

Acanthuridae-surgeonfish

80,545

133,280

52,735

Holocentridae-squirrelfish

44,122

54,541

10,419

Mollusk-turbo snails,   octopus, giant clam

28,765

38,831

10,066

Scaridae-parrotfish

33,326

84,211

50,885

Crustaceans-crabs

20,686

21,093

407

 

The Council noted that the 2012 catches for certain coral reef ecosystem species groups and MHI non-Deep 7 bottomfish complex exceeded the specified 2012 ACLs, but determined that overages are due to the following reasons:

  • Artifact of data expansion: the low number of interviews for atulai, mullets, rabbitfish, and mollusks with one fisherman having high amount of catches resulted in an over expansion in catches
  • Increase in catch reporting in the recent years due to implementation of civil resource violation penalties in Hawaii beginning in 2009. Because the 2012/2013 ABC and ACL calculations are based on data through 2008, they do not include the period after 2009 and are underestimated.

 

Although OFL is not known, other biological indicators indicate that the overages are not likely to have an impact on stock sustainability, or resulted in overfishing because:

  • Atulai and rabbitfishes are highly productive stocks, high population turn-over, high fecundity and exhibits natural variations in stock dynamics;
  • Overage for the non-deep 7 bottomfish is only 25 to 30% probability of overfishing;
  • Overage is an insignificant portion of the biomass (for parrotfish, surgeonfish, groupers, squirrelfish and rabbitfish);
  • Overages are within the bounds of the standard deviation of the catch time series.
  • ACL is based on Tier 5 data poor catch history with no other indicator of excessive fishing pressure on stocks. The Council suspects that ACLs are below optimum yield.

 

Finally, the Council noted NS1 guidelines require the Council to address the operational issue or systemic flaws that contributed to the overages. Therefore, the Council is re-examining the system of setting ABC and ACL for data poor fisheries, including coral reef ecosystem and MHI non-Deep 7 bottomfish to correct the operational issues that contributed to the overages in these fisheries starting in 2015.

For the full report on the catch evaluation in fishing year 2012 [click here]