Bad Bluff oyster season alarms skipper

Long Lunch 12/04/2018
Photo credit: Getty.

We all love the Bluff oysters. If you’re an oyster fan you will know they are the cream of the crop. But it’s been a bad season again.

The alarming drop has concerned skipper Anthony Fowler, who is calling for the fishery to be closed.

“Last year at this time we were getting 40 to 50 cases a day. This year we’re getting, like, 20,” he told newsroom.co.nz.

NIWA scientist Keith Michael has studied the fishery for more than 20 years. He confirms this year’s catch rates are lower.

Speaking to Wendyl Nissen on The Long Lunch he said it has been a tough year.

It’s a situation that’s been forecast for some time.

“The fishery fluctuates in abundance, driven by disease mortality,” he said. “There’s an endemic pathogen called Bonamia exitiosa which has caused on going issues in the fishery since about 1985.”

“Bonamia has been in the fishery for a long time but we have seen these ups and downs.

“This year we’re just starting to come out of a low point, and we have signalled that the catch rates would be low.” 

Listen to the full interview with Keith Michael above.

The Long Lunch with Wendyl Nissen, 12pm - 3pm on RadioLIVE and streaming live to the rova app on Android and iPhone.

RadioLIVE.