Introduction

DOC and Ministry for Primary Industries are seeking public comment on the draft New Zealand sea lion/rāpoka Threat Management Plan.

Date:  20 June 2016

Public consultation on the draft plan opens today and submissions can be made until 5 August 2016. Feedback will help decision-making on the final plan.

The plan will provide a long-term programme to manage threats to sea lions and reduce their population decline.

These threats include disease, commercial fishing, changes in food resources, pups drowning in holes, male sea lion aggression and human disturbance.

DOC's manager of marine species and threats, Ian Angus, said the plan will consider the known key human-induced and natural threats to sea lions, how we manage and mitigate these threats, and research and monitoring priorities.

"Our key focus is gaining better information to ensure the sea lion population recovers," Ian said.

"This is a great opportunity for the public to have a say on how we can work together to reduce impacts on this species."

Background information

The sea lion threat management plan was sought by the Minister of Conservation and the Minister for Primary Industries in 2014 in response to an ongoing trend of decline in sea lion pup numbers at the main breeding sites at the Auckland Islands.

DOC and MPI ran a formal risk assessment process with national and international experts over the last 18 months, the results of which have informed the plan.

As well as national initiatives to help the sea lion population recover, the plan proposes several actions in the four regions where sea lions breed – the Auckland Islands, Campbell Island, Stewart Island and the Otago coast (including the Catlins).

Find out more about the consultation.

Contact

Ian Angus
DOC Manager of Marine Species and Threats
Phone: +64 4 471 3081
Email: iangus@doc.govt.nz 

Dave Turner
MPI Director Fisheries Management
Phone: +64 29 894 0328
Email: media@mpi.govt.nz

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