Top ten sustainable fish stocks
Australia’s report card for the sustainability of wild-caught fish is in.
Eighty-three species made up of 294 stocks were assessed for the Status of Australian Fish Stocks Reports 2016 and of the 132,200 tonnes (t) harvested in 2015 for these species, almost 85 per cent of the catch was from fish stocks found to be sustainable.
Top 10 sustainable fish stocks with the greatest harvests volumes that received a sustainable classification were:
Nearly 40 000 t of this small forage fish was harvested in 2015 from Australia’s southern waters. All four of the stocks of Australian Sardine are classified as sustainable.
Western Rock Lobster the worlds first Marine Stewardship Council certified fishery. Adds to its reputation as one of the most sustainable Rock Lobsters in the world being assessed green in the 2016 Status of Australian Fish Stocks Report . In 2015, more than 6000 t of was harvested.
3. Tiger Prawns
Australia’s eight Tiger Prawn stocks (all in northern Australia) are all classified as sustainable (or in the case of New South Wales, harvests were so small as to be negligible). The harvest in 2015 totalled just under 6000 t.
4. Banana Prawn
Northern Australia’s five Banana Prawn stocks have all been classified as sustainable. Less than 5000 t was harvested in 2015.
The two stocks of Patagonain Tootfish fished around the subantarctic islands of Macquarie and the Heard and McDonald Islands, are both classified as sustainable. The harvest in 2015 was more than 5500 t.
6. Sea Mullet
Australia’s two stocks of Sea Mullet (one on the west coast and one on the east) are both classified as sustainable. Around 4500 t of Sea Mullet was harvested in 2015.
Of the eight stocks of Western King Prawn spread across north-west Western Australia and South Australia that were assessed as part of the 2016 SAFS report, seven were classified as sustainable and one was classified as transitional depleting for the 2016 reporting period. Recent evidence would suggest that the transitional depleting stock is now sustainable. This will be reassessed in the 2018 report.
Tiger Flathead is classified as sustainable throughout the distribution of this single south-eastern Australian stock. Around 3000 t of Tiger flathead was harvested in 2015.
Australia’s only stock of Southern Rock Lobster (caught throughout southern Australia) is classified as sustainable, with a harvest of just under 3000 t in 2015.
Eastern King Prawn from Queensland and New South Wales is classified as sustainable, with harvest levels of less than 2900 t in 2015.
Specific reports looking at different groupings
JurisdictionReports for each state or territory jurisdiction.
MolluscsMolluscs are invertebrate animals that includes the clams, calamari, squid, octopi and snails.
CrustaceansCrustaceans are a group of animals that include crabs, shrimps, prawns, lobsters and crayfish.
SharksSharks are a subgroup of cartilaginous fishes; usually large, fast swimming, fish-shaped predators.
FinfishFinfish are a vertebrate animals that have gills and live in water.