Hector’s dolphin death highlights need for tougher stance on set nets

The Green Party is calling for a total ban on recreational set nets in the Banks Peninsula Marine Mammal Sanctuary to stop more Hector’s dolphins from being caught in them and drowning.

Scientists have today confirmed the death of a Hector’s dolphin found in Akaroa Harbour was caused by a set net.

Current legislation allows set nets to be used in some inner bays of Akaroa Harbour from 1 April to 30 September to catch flat-fish. Set nets create a wall from the sea surface to the sea bed, catching everything that tries to pass through. Dolphins can become caught in them and drown.

“If we are to properly protect Hector’s dolphins, we should ensure all of the harbour and Banks Peninsula coast is set net-free. It’s been only a week since set net fishing was allowed for the year, and already one Hector’s dolphin has been killed,” Green Party conservation spokersperson Eugenie Sage said.

“Hector’s dolphins live close to the coast making them highly vulnerable to being caught in set nets. Making all waters less than 100 metres deep throughout the Hector’s dolphin range set net-free and ensuring these laws are enforced would be a major step to preventing dolphin deaths.

“Hector’s dolphin is classified as a nationally endangered species. The most recent published estimate of the Hector’s dolphin population is 7,270.

“It’s not appropriate to allow set nets in areas that a nationally endangered species is known to use when we know that set nets are an indiscriminate fishing method, and cause dolphin deaths.

“We need to protect the Hector’s dolphin, not continue to allow avoidable deaths of an endangered animal,” Ms Sage said.

 

 

Latest Environment Announcements

Petition

Take action to protect our oceans

We’re taking the health of our oceans seriously and our Thriving Oceans Plan sets out exactly how the Green Party will protect them so we all can e...
TAKE ACTION

Thriving Oceans

Oceans are the lifeblood of our planet and home to thousands of taonga species, providing us with nourishing food to feed our families, supporting ...
Read More

Farming For The Future

Here in Aotearoa, we can have a thriving and sustainable farming sector that is good for farmers, good for people, and good for the planet. By maki...
Read More

Story

More action on waste – Government funds recycling infrastructure, moves to standardise kerbside collections

$36.7m Government investment in high-tech recycling plants nationwide Plan to standardise and improve the nation’s kerbside collections As part o...
Read More

Story

New rules for the outdoor storage of tyres

The Government is introducing environmental standards for tyres stored outdoors announced Associate Minister for the Environment, Eugenie Sage. “A ...
Read More

Story

Government announces plan to tackle problem plastics and seven single-use plastic items

Following the success of the phase out of single-use plastic shopping bags, the Government now has plans to phase out more single-use and problem p...
Read More