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Stock assessment of Queensland east coast saddletail snapper (Lutjanus malabaricus), Australia

Campbell, A. B., Fox, A.R., Hillcoat, K.B. and Sumpter, L. (2021) Stock assessment of Queensland east coast saddletail snapper (Lutjanus malabaricus), Australia. Technical Report. State of Queensland, Brisbane.

PDF (Saddletail stock assessment report 2021)


In Queensland, east coast saddletail snapper (Lutjanus malabaricus) are mostly line-caught by commercial and recreational fishers, with some recreational spearfishing take. Saddletail snapper are believed to be a single stock (population) off Queensland’s east coast.

This is the first stock assessment of the Queensland east coast stock. The assessment implemented a two-sex population model fit to age and length data, constructed within the Stock Synthesis modelling framework.
The model incorporated data spanning the period from financial years 1988 to 2020 including commercial logbook harvest (1988–2020), recreational, charter and Indigenous survey harvest estimates (2000–2019), length distribution data from boat-ramp surveys (2017–2020) and age-length (2018–2020).

Twenty-one model scenarios were run, covering a wide range of modelling assumptions. Base case (preferred) scenario results suggested that biomass declined between 1961 and 2017 to 19% unfished biomass. In 2020, the stock level was estimated to be 23% (13–73% range across scenarios) unfished biomass.

The harvest consistent with a biomass ratio of 60%, the Sustainable Fisheries Strategy longer-term target, was estimated at 159 t (146–348 t range across scenarios and all sectors). The recommended harvest in the 2021 financial year is 12 t (0–494 t range across scenarios) to achieve this target by 2040.

Item Type:Monograph (Technical Report)
Corporate Creators:Department of Agriculture and Fisheries, Queensland, College of Science and Engineering, James Cook University, Townsville, Queensland
Business groups:Fisheries Queensland
Keywords:saddletail snapper, stock assessment, Queensland, fisheries, biomass
Subjects:Science > Statistics > Statistical data analysis
Science > Statistics > Mathematical statistics
Science > Statistics > Simulation modelling
Aquaculture and Fisheries > Fisheries
Aquaculture and Fisheries > Fisheries > Fishery resources
Aquaculture and Fisheries > Fisheries > Fishery for individual species
Live Archive:23 Aug 2021 02:21
Last Modified:03 Sep 2021 16:46

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