Fishing and acquaculture

This page and the ‘child pages’  are to provide members with information regarding fishing and acquaculture, such as planning applications, submissions and any potential developments that may affect residents and the Port area. Any rules relating to fishing or acquaculture are intended as general guidance only. Please ensure that you confirm the legal position before acting.


The Minister for Primary Industries has announced a closure of the Southern Scallop Fishery (SCA 7) and Port Underwood for the 2017-2018 season to both recreational and commercial scallop fishing to protect remaining scallop beds and prevent further declines in scallop abundance. Further information can be found at:


Minister’s decision for PAU 3 and PAU 7 fisheries

Following consultation, the Minister of Fisheries decided to reduce the:

  • daily bag limit for pāua from 10 to 5
  • accumulation limit from 20 or 2.5kg* to 10 or 1.25 kg*. (* The weight limit applies if the pāua are in a state that is unable to be counted).

The reductions apply to both black foot pāua (Haliotis iris) and yellow foot pāua (Haliotis australis). No more than 5 of each species can be collected per gatherer per day.

The areas covered are PAU 3 (Kaikōura and Canterbury) and PAU 7 (Nelson and Marlborough) fisheries. The new regulations become effective from 12 December 2019.

Reasons for the reductions

The change aims to reduce the risk of serial depletion from shifting recreational fishing after impacts on the pāua populations caused by the 2016 Kaikōura earthquakes. In 2016, the Kaikōura earthquakes caused an uplift of coastline in both PAU 3 and PAU 7. As a result, pāua populations and other intertidal species along these sections of coastline were significantly impacted, with high levels of observed mortality.

Shellfish biotoxin alert – Port Underwood

Date: 25 Oct 2019

Media contact: MPI media team

Telephone: 029 894 0328


The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) today issued a public health warning advising the public not to collect or consume shellfish harvested in the Port Underwood region from the East side of The Tongue only (The area inside a line from the tip of Separation Point on the Tongue to The Knobbies on the eastern side of the bay).

Routine tests on shellfish samples taken from Port Underwood has shown levels of Diarrhetic Shellfish Toxins above the safe limit of 0.16 mg/kg set by MPI.  Anyone eating shellfish from this area is potentially at risk of illness.

See a map of the warning

Ongoing testing will continue and any changes will be communicated accordingly.

Mussels, oysters, tuatua, pipi, toheroa, cockles, scallops, catseyes, kina (sea urchin) and all other bivalve shellfish should not be eaten.

Note: Cooking shellfish does not remove the toxin.

Pāua, crab and crayfish may still be eaten if the gut has been completely removed prior to cooking, as toxins accumulate in the gut. If the gut is not removed its contents could contaminate the meat during the cooking process.

Symptoms typically appear within half an hour of ingestion and last for about 24 hours. Symptoms may include:

  • Diarrhoea
  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Abdominal cramps

If anyone becomes ill after eating shellfish from an area where a public health warning has been issued phone Healthline for advice on 0800 61 11 16, or seek medical attention immediately. You are also advised to contact your nearest public health unit and keep any leftover shellfish in case it can be tested.

Monitoring of toxin levels will continue and any changes will be communicated accordingly. Commercially harvested shellfish – sold in shops and supermarkets, or exported – is subject to strict water and flesh monitoring programmes by MPI to ensure they are safe to eat.

Map of affected area



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