Catch, Effort and CPUE
Commercial Mullet catches peaked in 1999/2000 at 4.9 t, and again in 2012/13 at 4.4 t. Aside from these peaks, catches have shown a decreasing trend and have generally been less than 2 t since 2006/07 (Figure below). The commercial Mullet catch in 2020/21 was only 0.8 t (Figure below).
Beach seine has historically been the dominant fishing gear used to harvest Mullet, but small mesh nets started to increase in relative importance in 2010/11 and were responsible for higher albeit very small catches than beach seine in 2020/21 (Figure above). Recent fishing activity for both main gear types has been concentrated on the northeast and northwest coasts, while the southeast coast was also important historically for beach seine.
Recreational catch estimates for Mullet have generally been substantially higher than commercial catches (Figure above) (Lyle 2005; Lyle et al. 2009; Lyle et al. 2014b; Lyle et al. 2019). Thus, the recreational fishery represents a more considerable source of impact on Mullet than the commercial fishery.
The full 2020/21 Scalefish Assessment, released Dec 2022, can be found at the link: