Poster Presentation Australian Society for Fish Biology Conference 2022

“Project Kingfish”: a collaboration with recreational anglers to research and inform the management of yellowtail kingfish (Seriola lalandi) off eastern Australia (#209)

Tristan Guillemin 1 2 , Belinda Goddard 1 2 , Hayden Schilling 3 , Julian Hughes 4 , Matt Taylor 3 , Rob Harcourt 2 , Iain Suthers 5 , Fabrice Jaine 1 2
  1. Sydney Institute of Marine Science, Mosman, NSW, Australia
  2. School of Natural Sciences, Macquarie University, Macquarie Park, NSW, Australia
  3. New South Wales Department of Primary Industries, Port Stephens, NSW, Australia
  4. New South Wales Department of Primary Industries, Mosman, NSW, Australia
  5. School of Biological, Earth & Environmental Sciences, University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW, Australia

Highly regarded for their great taste and awesome fighting abilities, yellowtail kingfish (Seriola lalandi) are one of Australia’s most iconic recreational species, and support important commercial fisheries. Despite forming a single genetic stock throughout southern and eastern Australia, major knowledge gaps exist regarding their movements, connectivity, spawning locations and recruitment. “Project Kingfish” is a new, multi-year research program funded by the New South Wales (NSW) Recreational Fishing Trust to help address these knowledge gaps. Over the next few years, the team will work closely with the recreational fishing community to boost scientific data collection from spawning-sized kingfish throughout eastern Australia. Using nationwide citizen science data generated via the NSW Game Fish Tagging Program, the team will analyse data from over 40,000 kingfish tagged and released between 1973-2022 to identify and describe connectivity between fishery jurisdictions over the geographical extent of the stock. Tapping into their countless years of experience and knowledge, Project Kingfish will also team up with specialist recreational anglers to deploy satellite tags on mature-sized kingfish to gain insights into movements and important habitats for the spawning stock. Through a series of dedicated fishing competitions and a science communication campaign on social media, Project Kingfish will also engage with recreational anglers to promote sustainable fishing practices and highlight research results that will feed directly into informing the management of the east Australian kingfish stock.