Seafloor ecosystems suffer due to extreme weather, New Zealand report alerts

NIWA has launched a report about the impacts of cyclones Hale and Gabrielle caused in Tairāwhiti and Hawke's Bay.
 Te Mata Peak, Hawkes Bay, Central Otago in New Zealand at sunset.

Te Mata Peak, Hawkes Bay, Central Otago in New Zealand at sunset.

Adobe Stock

New Zealand's National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA) has launched a research report, on behalf of Fisheries New Zealand, that analyzes the impacts of cyclones Hale and Gabrielle on seafloor ecosystems.

To be more precise, this new research will help fishery managers plan for and respond to any extreme weather on coastal marine habitats in Tairāwhiti and Hawke’s Bay, Oceans and Fisheries Minister Shane Jones indicated.

Scientists from NIWA have used underwater cameras and satellite imagery to observe through the surface. Therefore, fishery actors will understand how fish stocks have fared and how they are recovering.

However, Jones explained this will require more time: "While the report noted that some areas are already showing signs of recovery, it’s too soon to conclude how the fish stocks are doing."

On the other hand, he indicated: "I want to acknowledge hapū, iwi, and communities for their resilience and for the important insights they've provided about the effects on their local fisheries."

The Minister decided to reduce commercial and recreational rock lobster catch limits for the CRA3 fishery near Gisborne precisely due to the cyclones that occurred last year.

Finally, the New Zealand Government has funded the cyclone recovery with $232 million. This was dedicated to cleaning sediment and debris across the regions.

Related Stories

No stories found.