Tuna Fisheries Bycatch

Information on tuna fishery by-catch is available on the Bycatch Management Information System (https://www.bmis-bycatch.org/about-bmis). 

“The Bycatch Management Information System (BMIS) focuses on bycatch mitigation and management in oceanic tuna and billfish fisheries*. It is an open resource useful for fishery managers, fishers, scientists, observers, educators and anyone with an interest in fisheries management. As a reference and educational tool, the BMIS aims to support the adoption and implementation of science-based management measures so that bycatch is managed comprehensively and sustainably. The BMIS mainly focuses on highly migratory species with low reproductive rates, including seabirds, sharks and rays, sea turtles and marine mammals.”

Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) Fishing

Information on IUU fishing in the Pacific Region is provided most recently in the MRAG Asia Pacific Report “Towards the Quantification of Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) Fishing in the Pacific Islands Region” which can be downloaded here.

For FSM, a key MCS instrument to deter non-compliance is the Administrative Penalty regulation, which involves issuing citations to offending parties. Table 1. shows number of vessels that were issued citations in 2014-2016, some of which resulted in prosecutions.

Table 1: Vessels issued with Citations

Year

Breach Code /Offences

No. of vessels

Action

2014

(I) Violating FSM Title 24

(II) Failure to meet additional or special conditions of fishing permits

(III) Failure to mark vessel in accordance with FAO standard specifications

25

taken to port for prosecution and settling their cases out of court

 

2015

(i) Violating FSM Title 24

(ii) Failure to meet additional or special condition of fishing permits

(iii) Failure to mark vessel in accordance with FAO standard specifications

12

taken to port for prosecution and settling their cases out of court

 

2016

(i) Violating FSM Title 24

(ii) Failure to meet additional or special condition of fishing permits

(iii)Failure to mark vessel in accordance with FAO standard specifications

12

taken to port for prosecution and settling their cases out of court

Late 2016, Department of Justice waived the administrative penalties and citations, but escorted vessels to port for investigation and prosecution

Four significant activities took place during 2014-2016 period where the NORMA Compliance assisted with maritime surveillance. They included:

  1. Operation Island Chief
  2. US Navy Joint Patrol Under the Ship Rider Agreement
  3. Operation Big Eye
  4. Operation Kurukuru