Sea lions and fur seals are the protected species most directly affected by fisheries in New Zealand waters, along with seabirds and dolphins. Trawling poses a risk to both species. Fur seals can also be captured by other fishing gear, including long lines. 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 (Baker et al, 2010). 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).
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Imported on Oct. 14, 2016