CCSBT Commission for the Conservation of Southern Bluefin Tuna
SBT Research

In April 2001, the CCSBT agreed to implement a Scientific Research Program (SRP) with five components as priorities. The five elements are:-

  • characterisation of the SBT catch;
  • improvement in CPUE interpretation and analysis;
  • development of a scientific observer program;
  • implementation of a SBT tagging program;
  • direct ageing.

The 2013 meeting of the Extended Scientific Committee adopted a modified framework for the SRP structured around:

  • On-going Scientific Monitoring;
  • Management Procedure (MP) Implementation; and
  • Stock Assessment (Operating Model development).

The meeting also identified and prioritised potential future (2014-2018) SRP activities. These are described in paragraphs 136 to 148 and Attachment 12 of the Report of the Eighteenth Meeting of the Scientific Committee.

The highest priorities identified for commencing in 2014 under the SRP were:

  • The collection and archiving of samples for close-kin genetics in Australia and Indonesia (continued close-kin sample collection and analysis enables estimation of the absolute value and trend of the spawning biomass);
  • A design study for potential close-kin genetics and gene-tagging programs;
  • Initiating collection and preservation of ovary samples (across fisheries and size classes); and
  • Further collation and analysis of existing data on selectivity in the Indonesian spawning ground fishery.

CCSBT has funded the first two items above, with the exception of gene-tagging, which will be considered for 2015. Individual CCSBT Members will be progressing the last two items.

The next meeting of the Extended Scientific Committee will be developing an updated comprehensive SRP.