Estimated sea lion captures in all trawl fisheries (2003–13)
New Zealand's Environment Reporting Series: The Ministry for the Environment and Statistics New Zealand
Sea lions and fur seals are the protected species most directly affected by fisheries in New Zealand waters, along with seabirds and dolphins. Estimating the bycatch of sea lions and fur seals indicates the pressures they face from current fishing practices. The New Zealand sea lion Phocarctos hookeri is threatened with extinction and is classified as nationally critical. Its population is steadily falling at some breeding locations. Fisheries are one of the pressures on the species. The Fisheries Act 1996 designates this species as protected and requires mitigation measures to reduce bycatch (Ministry for Primary Industries, 2014).