|Chimaera, pearl, pearl fish, chimére (France), ginbuka, ginzame (Japan)|
Dark ghost shark is a worst choice seafood. An alternative is
This slow-growing deepwater shark species is only found in New Zealand and is most abundant in waters 150 to 500m deep off the West Coast of the South Island and the Chatham Rise. It is caught almost entirely as bycatch in other target trawl fisheries, notably the hoki fishery, but also the silver warehou, arrow squid and barracouta fisheries, plus by deepwater longlining.
Dark ghost sharks are bycatch in different trawl fisheries including hoki, silver warehou, arrow squid, and barracouta. The concerns about this fishery include the lack of basic biological data, the uncertain long-term sustainability of catch levels, the unknown status of the fish stocks, and the impact of bottom trawling on benthic species. As a bycatch species, it has associated seabird and marine mammal bycatch. In 2013 a revised New Zealand National Plan of Action for the Conservation and Management of Sharks was developed. There are no specific conservation actions for ghost sharks, nor is there any difference in its management from the status quo. Dark ghost sharks were ranked at seventh on the initial risk assessment for all chondricthyans (Ford et al, 2015.)
Not certified under any scheme.
Ghost shark exports of around $819,000, mainly to Japan. Shark fins were exported to Asia in 2015. The value of total shark, ray and skates exports in 2015 was $31.33 million.
No regional or fishing method difference.
|Population size:||Unknown. There are no estimates of current and reference biomass available.|
|Annual catch limit:||Limit set at 3047 tonnes since 2013-14.|
|Recorded catch:||Estimated landings of 1283 tonnes in 2014-15.|
|MSY Status:||Unknown. Given the likely strong stock recruit relationship in elasmobranchs, and likely low fecundity, current equations used for estimating MSY are not appropriate as they are likely to produce overly optimistic estimates (see Francis and Francis, 1992).|
|The Ministry of Primary Industries assessment plenary report includes:||“No assessment of any stocks of dark ghost shark has been completed. Therefore, no estimates of yield are available.” (MPI 2015, p398-407).|
|Distribution:||A deepwater species found throughout New Zealand waters, but mostly off central and southern New Zealand at depths of 200-400m.|
|Maximum age (years):||Unknown|
|Age at sexual maturity:||5-9? – 52-53cm for males and 62-63 cm for females.|
|Ability to recover:||Low|
|Fishing method(s):||Trawling (both bottom and midwater), caught as bycatch in hoki (43%), silver warehou (13%), arrow squid (13%) and barracouta (10%) fisheries.|
|Habitat damage:||Destruction of deepwater habitats by bottom trawling. Bottom trawling bulldozes the sea floor, destroying complex biogenic structures including soft corals, sponges and long-lived bryozoans.|
|Habitat of particular significance:||hasn’t been defined in New Zealand.|
|Bycatch:||Wide range of bycatch species (see hoki, silver warehou, arrow squid, barracouta), including non-target fish and shark species.|
|Ecological effects:||Could have broad ecological impacts as a result of seafloor damage and removal of a wide variety of non-target fish. (See hoki, silver warehou, and arrow squid.)|
A wide range of bycatch species depending on which fishery (see hoki, silver warehou, arrow squid, barracouta), including seabirds and marine mammals.
Hoki: It is estimated that 192 fur seals are captured in the hoki fishery (5-year average). Based on the recent catch spread of hoki the main captures occur in the Cook Strait (54%), off West Coast of the South Island (24%), off east coast of the South Island and Chatham Rise (15%). The hoki fishery catches about half of the estimated fur seals caught by trawling. The sub-Antarctic and Snares Shelf hoki fishery has a low capture rate for nationally critical New Zealand sea lions of about one a year. The trawl fishery also captures about 306 birds a year (5-year average): the main species are Salvin’s albatross, southern Buller’s albatross, white-capped albatross, sooty shearwater, white-chinned petrel, and cape petrels. Protected coral species are also reported caught in hake tows in most quota areas. The corals caught include gorgonian, hydrocorals, black corals (Antipatharia) and stony corals (Scleractinia) – which includes reef-like, tree-like, and solitary small corals. Other bycatch species include vulnerable deepwater sharks (e.g. shovelnose dogfish, seal shark and Baxter’s dogfish). These low productivity species also include threatened basking sharks (observed at one per year but could be higher), deepsea skates and some other elasmobranchs.
Trawl squid: Globally threatened New Zealand sea lions, which have been in decline for over 15 years, New Zealand fur seals, albatross and petrels drown in trawl nets. The fishery also catches globally threatened basking sharks. It is estimated that over 400 seabirds are killed annually. The main species observed caught were white-capped albatross, Salvin’s and southern Buller’s albatross, sooty shearwater and white-chinned petrels. The squid fishery made up 32% of white-capped albatross and 35% of sooty shearwater captures. The bottom trawl squid fishery also has bycatch of protected coral species.
Barracouta and silver warehou: Over 1160 birds are caught in middle-depth fisheries, which include barracouta. This includes a significant bycatch in white-capped (shy) albatrosses, white-chinned petrels and sooty shearwaters. In addition, there is also the risk of capturing Hector’s dolphins.
|Management component:||Single species. While there is some uncertainty about stock boundaries, all quota areas have been used for management reducing the risk.|
|Quota Management Species:||Yes, since 1998.|
|Management plan:||Deepwater management plan for 2010-15 is out of date, and has yet to be reviewed and replaced. Dark ghost shark is outside of the current plan. There is no operational plan and the old Deepwater plan lacks key environmental standards. The National Plans of Action on Seabirds and Sharks are more relevant to bycatch issues but they are slow to be implemented.|
|Stock assessment:||No quantitative stock assessment. No estimates of current and reference biomass are available for dark ghost shark.|
|Research:||A 10-year planned deepwater research plan has been replaced (after 5 years) with an annual planning process with unclear commitments.|
|Observer coverage:||Observer coverage is 27% in the hoki fishery, 38% in the jack mackerel fishery, and 8% in middle depth trawl fisheries. The middle depth trawl is unlikely to be spatially or temporally representative of the fishing effort.|
Taken from the Ministry for Primary Industries’ Plenary report for fisheries management.
Report from the Fishery Assessment plenary, May 2009: stock assessments and yield estimates. Part 1: Alfonsino to Hake, Science Group, Ministry for Primary Industries; Ministry for Primary Industries (2016) Aquatic Environment and Biodiversity Annual Review 2015. Compiled by the Fisheries Management Science Team, Ministry for Primary Industries. 682p. The Guidebook to New Zealand Commercial Fish Species, 2007 Revised Edition, The New Zealand Seafood Industry Council Ltd. Seafood NZ, 2016. New Zealand Seafood Exports to December 2015. 133p; New Zealand National Plan of Action for the Conservation and Management of Sharks (2013), Ministry of Fisheries. Annual Review Report for Deepwater Fisheries for 2014/15. MPI Technical Paper No: 2016/09. Prepared by the Ministry for Primary Industries. March 2016. 103p. S.J. Baird, D. Tracey, S. Mormede, M. Clark (2013) The distribution of protected corals in New Zealand waters. Prepared for DOC, February 2013. 96p. MFish (2010) National Fisheries Plan for Deep-Water and Middle-Depth Fisheries, 2010. 51p.