Assessing the effectiveness of size limits and escape gaps as management tools in a commercial rock lobster (Jasus edwardsii) fishery

  • Published source details Linnane A., Penny S., Hoare M. & Hawthorne P. (2011) Assessing the effectiveness of size limits and escape gaps as management tools in a commercial rock lobster (Jasus edwardsii) fishery. Fisheries Research, 111, 1-7.


This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Modify fishing trap/pot configuration

Action Link
Marine Fish Conservation
  1. Modify fishing trap/pot configuration

    A before-and-after study in 2000–2008 in a fished area of seabed in the Southern Ocean off South Australia (Linnane et al. 2011) reported that catches of unwanted blue-throat wrasse Notolabrus tetricus and leatherjacket Meuschenia spp. were lower after the introduction of escape gaps to lobster traps. Data were not statistically tested. In 2000 and 2001, unwanted catches of wrasse were 0.12 and 0.09 wrasse/pot respectively, while catches of leatherjacket were 0.28 and 0.36 leatherjacket/pot. In 2003 after escape gaps in lobster pots had been introduced, wrasse catches were 0.05 wrasse/pot and remained between 0.05–0.06 wrasse/pot in the period until 2008. Leatherjacket catches were 0.13 leatherjacket/pot in 2003 and remained below 0.22 leatherjacket/pot until 2008. Escape gaps also reduced catches of undersized commercial target rock lobster Jasus edwardsii by 64%. In 2003, two escape gaps (minimum 5.7 cm height x 28 cm width) were made mandatory at each end of lobster pots in the Northern Zone rock lobster fishery in the Great Australian Bight. Catch rates of undersized lobster and unwanted fish species for the period 2000–2008 were obtained from a voluntary logbook programme established in 2000.

    (Summarised by: Leo Clarke)

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