Stock assessment program
By itself, fisheries data can be misleading because many factors influence fish stocks and fisheries (e.g. season can influence catch and weather can influence fishing effort). Misinterpreting data, or only looking at some of the data, can lead to very different opinions about the sustainability of fish stocks. Stock assessments interpret all these factors in a consistent way.
Stock assessments integrate our understanding of ecology, biology, environment, fishing behaviours and other drivers (such as product value) to give us a measure of the health of fish stocks.
They are critical to support evidence-based harvest strategies and fisheries management – stock assessments are scheduled to link with harvest strategy timelines and are typically reviewed every 1–3 years to set fishing effort and harvest targets.
The results also contribute to Status of Australian Fish Stocks reports, to determine if a stock is sustainably fished, overfished or somewhere in between.
How we assess fish stocks
Stock assessments are completed by our specialist fishery scientists, who have skills in mathematical modelling, biological research, statistical analysis and computer science .
They use a model-based stock assessment, which is a mathematical tool that calculates the status of a fish stock and assesses how these fish will respond to different management procedures. It brings together a large volume of data, including:
- commercial logbook data
- recreational harvest estimates
- biological surveys
- environmental conditions
- economic information.
Reports and assessment schedule
Click on the links below for the latest stock assessment reports – you can also access previous reports by searching our eResearch Archive.
The following species are scheduled to be assessed over the next 3 years.
|Blue Swimmer crab||✔|
|Common coral trout||✔|
|Eastern king prawn||✔|
|Moreton Bay bug||✔|
|Tropical rock lobster||✔|
* To be assessed by an external provider through industry funding.
** Sharks will be assessed by species or species group. New species/species groups will be assessed on a three-year rotational basis.