West Coast rock lobster now red status on watch-list

West Coast rock lobster has dropped to red status. This is the threatened status on the WWF ( World Wide Fund for Nature)Southern African Sustainable Seafood Initiative watch-list.

John Duncan Crayfish in Western Cape levels critical, Marine program manager, WWF's SA Sustainable Seafood Institute talks to Kieno Kammies about this issue.

Does this mean local crayfish has reached the same levels of depletion as abalone?

I think they are pretty similar (crayfish and abalone). Both stocks are heavily depleted. When looking at West Coast rock lobster, the stocks are now around 3% of what it was when we started fishing.

John Duncan Crayfish in Western Cape levels critical, Marine program manager, WWF's SA Sustainable Seafood Institute

What we are aiming for is somewhere around 50%. A healthy fish stock is 50% of the original bio mass. So we are really sitting in an unhealthy position.

John Duncan Crayfish in Western Cape levels critical, Marine program manager, WWF's SA Sustainable Seafood Institute

Duncan says the roots of the problem are not properly researched. There are many wild guesses around issues like illegal poaching. But, he says, they need to quantify these findings through proper research.

Listen to the interview here:


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