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Roe's Abalone (2018)

Haliotis roei

  • Lachlan Strain (Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development, Western Australia)
  • Katherine Heldt (South Australian Research and Development Institute)

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Summary

Roe’s Abalone are distributed from Shark Bay in WA south around to western Vic. They are classified as sustainable stock in WA and undefined stock in SA.

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Stock Status Overview

Stock status determination
Jurisdiction Stock Fisheries Stock status Indicators
South Australia South Australia Western Zone Fishery SAWZF Undefined
SAWZF
South Australia Western Zone Fishery (SA)
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Stock Structure

Roe’s Abalone are distributed from Shark Bay in Western Australia south around to western Victoria. Recent genetic evidence indicates the existence of one Roe’s Abalone meta-population across the species distribution (sampled from Kalbarri in Western Australia to Spencer Gulf in South Australia) but with three differentiated adaptive population clusters [Sandoval-Castillo et al. 2015]. The southern adaptive population cluster extends across a substantial geographic range (Albany in Western Australia to Spencer Gulf in South Australia) traversing jurisdictional boundaries. The stock is currently managed as several separate units. Assessment of stock status is therefore presented here at the management unit level—Western Australia Area 2 Fishery, Western Australia Area 5 Fishery, Western Australia Area 6 Fishery, Western Australia Area 7 Fishery and South Australia Western Zone Fishery.

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Stock Status

South Australia Western Zone Fishery

Prior to commercial catches, an experimental fishery for Roe’s Abalone caught 45.4 t (whole weight) from November 2000 to December 2002 [Preece et al. 2004]. Results from the experimental fishery suggested that Roe’s Abalone are widely, but patchily distributed across the Western Zone of South Australia with limited areas of high abundance [Preece et al. 2004]. In 2014, a maximum commercial catch limit of 11 t (whole weight) with a minimum legal length of 75 mm shell length (L50 estimated at 50–59 mm shell length [Preece et al. 2004]) was implemented under a Ministerial exemption. Best estimates of catch were between 61 per cent and 75 per cent of the total catch limit, with the species being targeted on very few days and by a small percentage of licence holders. There is no published assessment available for the South Australia Western Zone Fishery (SAWZF), and the data available are inadequate to estimate biomass or exploitation rates. There is little knowledge on recruitment or harvestable biomass, and there are no defined target or limit reference levels. This prevents assessment of current stock size or fishing pressure. Consequently, there is insufficient information available to confidently classify the status of this stock.

Based on the evidence provided above, the South Australia Western Zone Fishery management unit is classified as an undefined stock.

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Biology

Roe’s Abalone biology [Hancock 2004, Keesing 1984]

Biology
Species Longevity / Maximum Size Maturity (50 per cent)
Roe's Abalone 15 years, 89 mm SL 3 years, 40 mm SL
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Distributions

Distribution of reported commercial catch of Roe’s Abalone.
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Tables

Fishing methods
South Australia
Commercial
Diving
Indigenous
Various
Recreational
Various
Management methods
Method South Australia
Commercial
Limited entry
Size limit
Total allowable catch
Indigenous
Bag limits
Size limit
Recreational
Bag limits
Size limit
Active vessels
South Australia
22 in SAWZF
SAWZF
South Australia Western Zone Fishery (SA)
Catch
South Australia
Commercial 6.72t in SAWZF
Indigenous Unknown
Recreational Unknown
SAWZF
South Australia Western Zone Fishery (SA)
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Catch Chart

Commercial catch of Roe’s Abalone - note confidential catch not shown.