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Koura farming to be given a cautious green light

NEW ZEALAND - Koura farming to be given a cautious green light.

The farming of koura, or freshwater crayfish, will be allowed to continue and develop sustainably under changes to regulations agreed today by Fisheries Minister Jim Anderton and Conservation Minister Chris Carter.

“My colleague and I believe that, with appropriate controls in place, koura farming can be conducted sustainably and without placing the wild koura population at risk. We have therefore agreed to amend the Freshwater Fisheries Regulations to allow for farming of koura in advance of the completion of the wider freshwater review that is being undertaken,” said Jim Anderton.

There are existing differences between Freshwater Fish Farming Regulations administered by the Ministry of Fisheries and the Freshwater Fisheries Regulations administered by the Department of Conservation.

“The proposed amendments will allow for the issuing of new licences for new farms where brood stock can be sourced from existing farms. The Department of Conservation and the Ministry of Fisheries will also consider applications for the collection of limited quantities of wild koura under supervised and controlled circumstances for the improvement of brood stock quality,” Jim Anderton said.

“The key is to ensure that we continue to protect wild koura from poaching. That means putting in place a framework that does not allow for the laundering of wild stock though farms. The proposed amendments to the regulations will ensure that the wild fishery is absolutely protected for the time being,” said Chris Carter.

“The more problematic proposition of the harvest of wild koura will be looked at in greater detail through the freshwater review. However, with a thriving koura farming industry, there should be no need to harvest from the wild and threaten this precious taonga,” said Chris Carter.

Source: Scoop

the Fish Site Editor

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