M?ui and Hector?s dolphins: Update on New Zealand?s 2020 management decisions
Ministry for Primary Industries and Department of Conservation, New Zealand Government. Dave Lundquist and Erin Breen
Hector’s dolphins are two subspecies: the Nationally Critical Māui dolphins (Cephalorhynchus hectori maui) and the Nationally Vulnerable Hector’s dolphin (C. hectori hectori). New Zealand manages anthropogenic threats to these dolphins using the Hector’s and Māui dolphin Threat Management Plan (TMP). The TMP was reviewed and updated in 2019-20, building on a range of new information, including the spatially explicit multi-threat risk assessment (SC/68A/INFO/34) presented to the Scientific Committee in 2019. This paper outlines the outcome of that review, including a new vision, goals, and population objectives for the TMP, as well as the fishing and non-fishing protection measures implemented to achieve the objectives. There are now 31,550 km2 closed to set net fishing and 12,825 km2 is closed or subject to restrictions for trawl fishing to protect the dolphins. There are 37,286 km2 of sanctuaries where seismic surveying and seabed mining are prohibited, with limited exceptions.