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Normal Topic TROJAN HORSES AND TAUPO FISH FARMS (Read 9325 times)
Davey H
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TROJAN HORSES AND TAUPO FISH FARMS
Jun 11th, 2015 at 4:59am
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The recent leak of a deal being hatched between The Crown and Ngati Tuwharetoa over trout farming has created a huge ripple of concern amongst the freshwater angling community.

To rewind a little:  Way back in 1987 when DoC was established so too was the Taupo Fishery Advisory Committee (TFAC), a body of eight wise men & women to act as advocates and as a users advisory group for the Taupo fishery area, as administered by DoC.  Among the chosen few were representatives from the Professional Fishing Guides Association, local angling clubs, the NZFFA, a boat charter association, Ngati Tuwharetoa, Fish & Game and DoC.

Meetings have been infrequent, the last some three years ago when a major review of a then failing fishery was undertaken.  Despite many recommendations being forthcoming there is little evidence of any of these being implemented, other than a reduction in the minimum size of takeable fish.  However TFAC was set up to work together over all concerns relating to the Taupo fishery, particularly as it is there to represent the interests of some 30,000 anglers' licence purchases and over $1M in revenue per annum

So, it was something of a shock to learn that on 5 June 2015 DoC issued a letter to TFAC stating that "Ngati Tuwharetoa's Agreement in Principle includes redress proposals concerning the Tongariro National Trout Centre (TNTC)".  The bottom line of this is a proposed treaty settlement that enables Tuwhateroa to gain ownership and control of the TNTC and allow for:

"- Arrangements for Ngati Tuwharetoa to use a raceway and any other existing facilities not required by the Department of Conservation (DOC), and the ability to construct new facilities (with approval from the Trust) for the purposes of raising trout to harvest for important occasions;

- DOC to work with Ngati Tuwharetoa cadets to develop the skills required to raise and harvest trout at the Tongariro National Trout Centre."

In short, to allow trout farming with all the attendant risks of introducing disease into wild stocks and monetising trout which incentivises trout poaching.  After all, the discharge from the trout farming would go into the Tongariro.  These risks could kill the very goose which lays the golden egg of why people go and stay, spend money and enjoy the Turangi facilties.  And it's not just Taupo at risk as every river, lake and stream between the Tongariro and Port Waikato would be exposed to any disease.  That includes water fished by the Hamilton Anglers Club.

The Agreement in Principle raises some important legal, moral and strategic issues.  The fact that Tuwharetoa want to use the old raceways (originally put in as a contingency trout raising environment should a volcanic eruption decimate the valuable fishery) speaks volumes, particularly as a noted fishing personality of the region estimates these have the capability to hold up to 30,000 trout, clearly a lot more than needed for "important occasions".

Secondly, the TNTC has been built and operated out of the licence monies from the very anglers whose sport is at risk and who have not been consulted.

Thirdly, as trout were introduced into NZ in 1867 and into Lake Taupo in 1887 these liberations post-date the Waitangi Treaty and therefore could not legally be considered as relevant to any subsequent Tribunal claim.

Fourthly, trout farming has consistently been resisted by anglers under any guise simply because of the risks to the future of the fishery and the millions of revenue it generates.  Thus the proposed settlement whereby anglers' Taupo licence money will effectively be used for trout farming (by ceding ownership and use of the TNTC to the trout farmers) feels like a kick in the balls and the head by the Crown.

The letter continued to spell out that Lake Rotoaira would also fall under Tuwharetoa control and that a Trust would be set up to administer and charge for a distinct licence to fish the lake.

The letter concludes with the line that "OTS (Office of Treaty Settlements), DOC and THF(Tuwharetoa Hapu Forum (THF), on behalf of Ngati Tuwharetoa) will begin deed of settlement negotiations for these proposals shortly".

So there you go, the very body set up to protect and represent the interests of Taupo area anglers, TFAC, has been told that the Crown and Tuwharetoa will negotiate the future of the TNTC and by definition, the health and future of the Taupo fishery, without any involvement of TFAC.

Make no mistake - this is not DoC's gig, it is the Office of Treaty Settlements.

One wonders how such a process fits into a democratic egalitarian society such as ours.

DAVID HAYNES
PRESIDENT
NEW ZEALAND FEDERATION OF FRESHWATER ANGLERS
  
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Re:TUWHARETOA AND THE TAUPO FISH FARM DEBATE
Reply #1 - Jun 18th, 2015 at 4:46am
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ORIGINALLY POSTED BY NIGEL JUBY
I know that I am new here and wasn't at the AGM, but I do feel like I need to add my 5 cents worth to the Tuwharetoa debate.

When I have students, I always tell them that there is no such thing as a stupid question. If they don't understand something then others very likely don't either and they should raise the issue, even if they are nervous about looking stupid. I say the same thing to my clients. And myself.

Anyway, I have a few questions here. Some may be stupid, others may be legitimate.

As well as questions, I have a done some research and appear to have found a few facts - or conclusions made by experts and apparently not disputed by other experts in their field.

I have a few opinions as well.

What I'm saying here is that I am sure that some of you will disagree with some of my arguments. Please feel free to answer any questions that I may raise, correct any facts that I may have got wrong and finally use facts to argue with any opinions that I may have. Unlike many of you, I don't have decades of experience here. However, I also may not have decades of entrenched opinions either.

I also need to apologise that at 2.30am, I am inclined towards the polemic.

I’ll present the following as facts, coupled with evidence. Please challenge me if you think that I have got things wrong.

1: Koaro were a significant source of nutrition for Tuwharetoa.

Anyone dispute this?

2: Trout decimated the koaro population in Lake Taupo.

Evidence: Several papers by R.M. McDowell (who also argues that the virtual extinction of koaro in Lake Taupo also led to the significant decline of the Kakahi - fresh water mussel). Historical evidence around timing, boom and bust of trout and then success of trout when smelt were introduced.

Can anyone find any good evidence that trout were not responsible for the sudden and catastrophic loss of the populations of koaro?

If you want to read more about this, try Google “trout and galaxiids nz” - Here are some I came up with in about 30 seconds.

http://www.doc.govt.nz/Documents/science-and-technical/sfc320entire.pdf

http://newzealandecology.org/nzje/2909

http://www.pams.canterbury.ac.nz/ferg/pdfs/McIntosh_2000.pdf

-The Taupo specific effects are even greater - try F&G magazine issues 59 and 63.

Enough?

Bearing in mind that koaro larvae are adfluvial versions of anadromous whitebait, at $100/kg, Tuwharetoa could argue that the economic loss of this resource was significant. There are reports of “tonnes” being caught (1 tonne = $100 000 worth of whitebait).

But we don't even need to argue this, Tuwharetoa seems to be conciliatory and doesn't seem to blame trout entirely. See below.

6.12 Ngāti Tūwharetoa tradition records that fish were created in Lake Taupo (Taupomoana) by Ngātoroirangi when he cast the shreds of his cloak into the waters. Those fish included kōaro, inanga, kōkopu and kōura, all delicacies that Ngāti Tūwharetoa were famous for. As native fish species have declined, out of necessity Ngāti Tūwharetoa people have turned to trout as mahinga kai. Trout have therefore become a valued supplement to whānau and marae dining tables as well as a means to provide for manuhiri and to carry out traditional fishing practices.

and

6.29 Following the introduction of exotic fish, some native fish species have become extinct and others have dwindled. Introduced trout preyed on native fish species and competed with them for food. This has meant that Ngāti Tūwharetoa are unable to fully exercise their customary fishing rights provided for under section 14(2) of the Maori Land Amendment and Maori Land Claims Adjustment Act 1926

Pakeha scientists such as Bob McDowell are much more direct in blaming trout for the loss of Koaro from Lake Taupo.

Does anyone have a problem with this?? I don't as it seems pretty factual (apart from Ngatoriorangi and his cloak - although it seems that Maori may indeed have introduced koaro into the lake).

3. Tuwharetoa benefit from trout.

As far as I can see, No one is arguing with this. Tuwharetoa and the crown recognise this in the agreement in principle in many places including 6.12 above.

4. Tuwharetoa have adapted their traditions to include trout instead of Koaro.

In the same way as Pakeha kiwis have adapted our traditions to circumstances, so have Tuwharetoa. Our ancestors were more likely to have goose for Christmas dinner if they could afford it. In NZ we have BBQs, ham, turkey - if we can afford it. We are very fortunate that Maori have adapted in the same way. Rather than eating pigeons, weka, dogs and occasionally people, they have changed their food at traditional events to deer, pork, beef, chicken, trout etc. On “normal” days, they eat the same as us. Just like they dress the same, work the same and pay their mortgages the same.

I have the opinion that we are fortunate that their culture is flexible to change - as ours is.

This raises the problem. Tuwharetoa want a source of trout for special occasions to replace the fish that trout have eaten. At all other times, they are happy to catch them like everyone else.

Is this really unreasonable?

If one accepts the arguments above, what solution do you suggest for them?

a) Go out and catch wild trout using legal tackle and within the rules? I’m against this as it means that they are competing for the same fish as we do. Sometimes for significant quantities.

b) Gillnet surplus fish in Maori only areas? Not something that I would support for many reasons.

c) Raise their own fish? Why isn’t this a great idea? No effect on wild fish, using existing facilities, fish available whenever they need them, easily monitored etc.

The only arguments against option c) seem to be that;

(i) this is not the real agenda, rather it is a cunning plan to allow trout farming,

(ii) that somehow, what they want to do carries more risk than when the same ponds were full of fish for stocking waterways.

(iii) philosophical or racist prejudice.

I have pasted some of the areas of the draft agreement below. I think that the wording is pretty clear and dont support the “secret plan” conspiracy theory to commercialise trout in a way that they are not already commercialised.

Tongariro National Trout Centre

6.31 The deed of settlement is to provide for the following cultural redress arrangements with respect to the Tongariro National Trout Centre site: 6.31.1 for the purposes of raising trout to harvest for significant Ngāti Tūwharetoa hui, tangi and other occasions,

(a) arrangements for Ngāti Tūwharetoa to utilise a raceway at the Tongariro National Trout Centre;

(b) arrangements for Ngāti Tūwharetoa to use any other existing facilities that the Department of Conservation considers are not required by the Department of Conservation; and

(c) arrangements to enable Ngāti Tūwharetoa to construct and manage any new facilities agreed by the trust (referred to in clause 6.31.3)


National trout centre site - DOC land - government policy is to use government land in treaty settlements. Does the federation have a history or policy of opposing this?

We already raise trout at the trout centre for the purpose of harvest for "other occasions". In the current case, these "occasions" are kids fishing days. I have tried but I cannot see any difference between raising trout for harvest by one minority group (children) and another (Tuwharetoa).

If you want to call the Tuwharetoa operation a "farm", surely the kids fish out pond is one as well. Not only this pond, but all others around the country.

(c), might be a concern. However, decisions about expansion are made by the trust who is -

6.31.3 the establishment of a trust under the Reserves Act 1977 comprising six members to administer the land occupied by the Tongariro National Trout Centre, with the governance entity, Minister of Conservation and the Tongariro National Trout Centre Society appointing two members each;

Maybe there is an argument that F&G should be present here or that the trustees should be different. If this is the case - make the argument.

Can someone please tell me why Tuwharetoa would want to farm trout? - they already benefit from the trout industry and I would think that they are allies rather than adversaries here

In reading the AIP, it seems that Tuwharetoa value trout and, to be honest, I struggle to find anything disagreeable in it. If we accept the facts above, I think that trout anglers are getting off very lightly.

So: As far as I can see, trout ate the koaro in lake Taupo - all 216 square km of it. As well as concessions on licenses etc, Tuwharetoa wants to raise a few trout in a 1000 square m(???)  concrete pond, right next to another pond where we support the raising of trout for food for another minority group - children. Where is the problem? It sounds like they are more than fair and it is a practical solution.

If there is a secret plan to commercialise trout, I would have thought that Tuwharetoa would not have mentioned raising trout at all - just taken over the trout centre without controversy and then moved on with their plans.

There is no mention of restricting access to fishing water and all other clauses that I have seen just leave the status quo in place.

I have pasted the following from nzfishing.com.

On foot A 20-metre walking right-of-way extends around most of the lake for licenced anglers. For the most part this access is across privately owned Maori land and the access rights do not include access for vehicles.

This isn’t under threat.

Finally, I had a look at the federation's aims and objectives. If we were to look at the Tuwharetoa proposal as reducing the amount of trout that they take from wild populations, I see that supporting most of the AIP fits well within these.

Anyway, with only a couple of weeks left in the season, I'm heading back to bed so that I my nymph strike isn't too slow today.

We live in a great country where things like this are discussed openly and, if one can get over sleep deprivation, there is great fishing to be had, accessible to anyone with a license and the will to get out there.

We all want to protect this. This is the reason that we are involved in the federation.

Note: I waited until I re-read this with a clear head this morning. 2 cups of tea later and I still think that I make a good case. I’d love some feedback.

  
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Re: TROJAN HORSES AND TAUPO FISH FARMS
Reply #2 - Jun 18th, 2015 at 4:56am
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ORIGINALLY POSTED BY ALAN SIMMONS

In response to your writings below I need to say at the outset  I suspect that this is what it is and there is no big conspiracy.

Having been involved in the 1970's trout farming battle (and it was) I know this is one of those pivotal issues that inspires anglers to arms. How well that will happen these days is debatable but as you have seen already from the publicity the angler giant has stirred.  There is nothing like a conspiracy theory to fan the fire.

Now to address a few of your points raised:

In compensation for harvesting koaro Tuwharetoa have a full right to and do harvest smelt which are made up of koaro and many other species namely the smelt mix from the Rotorua Lakes. It could be argued that they were already well used to trading and eating that species which was a more prolific breeder than Koaro. You could also argue that it was climate change or land use change that reduced koaro numbers.

Currently Tuwharetoa and DOC have a freezer where all confiscated trout are  kept for their  special occasions.
The hatchery was never meant to be a fully operational hatchery. It was their as an insurance policy against volcanic eruptions. It has never really operated as a hatchery and use of 1 raceway has been encouraged so that they could grow the fish for the children's fish out days.
There is enough capacity there to grow out 300,000 fingerings and I would say about 100,000 to a kilo or so.
The finished product will do little for the Tuwharetoa mana as they are white fleshed and bloody horrible unless they are chemically fed various compounds to change the flesh.

All of this in water that is taken from a side stream of the Tongariro and fed back into that stream 200 meters from the Tongariro and the raising pens themselves are within a 100 meters of the Tongariro.

The same arguments against disease and poaching will still apply as they did in the 1970's.

The Taupo fishery is worth millions in net economic benefit and all that would be in danger if disease was to enter the Taupo system via its major tributary.

Secondly the fishery is world renown because it is a wild fishery. It has never had any trout reared for release into the fishery except for some limited science programmes to establish the best place where to release trout if the need arose to re-establish the fishery after a catastrophic event. Even then those fish were from Lake Tarawera stock which originally came from Taupo and were not bred in the "hatchery" under discussion.

I haven't even touched on poaching.....!!!!! and we are pretty good at it around here. I even own the domain name "thepoacher.co.nz" and would like to sell it.

Anyway I want to say it is good to hone our arguments and your "devils advocate" debate is very welcome as I suspect the battle will be so different this time. All the young people I meet ask why can't we farm trout. So  a re-education program needs to be started to hammer home the dangers. 

This could be seen as the thin end of the wedge with Federated Farmers already suggesting trout farms for their big water storage schemes and I noted someone has mooted in the latest farming magazines that they fill farm dams with carp for export to Asian markets.

  
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Re: TROJAN HORSES AND TAUPO FISH FARMS
Reply #3 - Jun 18th, 2015 at 5:14am
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ORIGINALLY POSTED BY TONY ORMAN

2: Trout decimated the koaro population in Lake Taupo.

I’m not sure on this. I know koaro are still present in the Hutt River after over 100 years of trout being there in substantial numbers. In fact a former president of the federation Theo Simeonidis and a friend caught koaro on the dry fly one night in the Hutt - as I remember back about 1990!

I’m must say I don’t share any enthusiasm for the late Bob McDowell who I knew personally - (we went to Palmerston North Boys High School together - a couple of classes back). We occasionally met in years later and I recall in the 1970s he and Bryce Johnson urging me to drop opposition to trout farming.

Note the opposition was based on much science from overseas (e.g. USA, Britain, Denmark, Australia etc) of disease, poaching, effluent and economic problems.

Bob McDowell is on record in Conservation Authority minutes as terming trout as “pests.”

Just remember because a chap is a scientist doesn’t mean he can’t be challenged. There are very good scientists and some very so-so average scientists.

Bearing in mind that koaro larvae are adfluvial versions of anadromous whitebait, at $100/kg, Tuwharetoa could argue that the economic loss of this resource was significant. There are reports of “tonnes” being caught (1 tonne = $100 000 worth of whitebait). Tonnes of koaro caught do you mean? By who?

If there was a koaro decline, what role did runoff with the “cocktail of chemicals” play, or the role of pine forests draining into the Lake or as someone suggested climate change, natural or man-induced? My understanding (proven by science) is that predator-prey relationships settle into a balance. Although I have to add NZ currently is in a grip of a frenzied phobia about pests, invasions and predators e.g. Gareth Morgan, Nick Smith which has no reality or ecological basis.
For those interested in following this up read Bill Benfield’s book “The Third Wave”(obtainable from Tross Publishing)


  
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Re: TROJAN HORSES AND TAUPO FISH FARMS
Reply #4 - Jun 18th, 2015 at 5:17am
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ORIGINALLY POSTED BY KEN SIMS

Response to Ngati Tuwharetoa Settlement claim regarding Trout.
Overview.
The use of a species introduced after the Treaty signing as an instrument for grievance settlements is illogical and unacceptable. The argument of using trout to compensate for the loss of natives fisheries is no different to that of claiming a customary interest in carrots for the inability to grow a decent kumera crop. It is spurious nonsense. It creates a grievance of its own.
The fact that the Ohakune carrot crop isn’t part of the settlement claim raises the question ‘is the inclusion of trout (to which there is no valid claim) because it is a major regional economic driver administered by what is seen as a soft touch, vis. a dysfunctional Department of Conservation?’

Specific Sections of the Agreement in Principle

Sections 6.12 – 6.15
Without doubt, native fisheries have declined. Without doubt, Tuwharetoa have benefited from the introduction of trout into the aquatic ecosystems, as have all citizens. That does not give them the right to claim kaitiakitanga over someone else’s taonga. We would point out that trout are NOT a taonga of the Department of Conservation, but of all trout licence holders (regardless of race), which is simply administered by DOC as public servants.

Sections 6.25.6
The ability to comment on, influence and share in the management of trout within the Taupo region is available to anyone, using established procedures. These are procedures which Tuwharetoa is already party to. To apply additional procedures based on race to a valued species they have no legitimate claim over is an anathema and a grievance to us.

Sections 6.28 – 6.30
The notion that the introduction of trout is somehow singularly responsible for the decline in native fisheries is an unacceptable patent nonsense. Are kōkopu, kōura, kōaro, and tuna flourishing in waterways devoid of trout? No they are not, they are described as ‘threatened’ or ‘endangered’. Human activities from wetland drainage to nitrogen pollution to climate change can also be held to account. Activities to which Tuwharetoa themselves are party to. Therefore, the argument that the introduction of trout has already been, and continues to be, a huge freely available benefit to Tuwharetoa is equally valid.

Section 6.31
The raising of stock for the purposes of harvesting for food is a definition of farming. Trout farming is illegal in New Zealand, for very good reasons. It is a well established principal in case law. The Federation was founded to oppose this practice being introduced, and we will fight any reversal of this policy by all means at our disposal.
We would ask “why is it not proposed to raise kōkopu, kōura, kōaro, and tuna for harvest, as these are the traditional food of Tuwharetoa?” Why trout - an illegal activity using a species introduced after the Treaty Settlement, and a revered toanga of others? This we find unacceptable.
Again we would point out that the Tongariro National Trout Centre is a toanga of all trout licence holders, which is administered by DOC on their behalf as public servants. As such it does not ‘belong’ to DOC or the Crown, and is not theirs to give away. Many fishermen from all over the country have contributed both time and financial resources to it and its running. Gifting it in whole or in part to others simply creates another grievance within the Treaty process.

Section 6.34
New Zealand is almost unique in the world in having fish species such as trout which are classed as ‘recreational only’ species. It is one of the things that produce such high economic gains within the Taupo region and elsewhere through associated activities such as tourism and accommodation, etc. It is something we hold dear and will fight to protect. This clause is unacceptable to us unless it specifically excludes trout or any other introduced species that is not currently subject to commercial harvesting.

Section 6.35
Trout were introduced to New Zealand by New Zealanders as sports fish. They have always been managed by anglers, for anglers. It is a model we value highly. Currently this is administered by Fish & Game NZ from regional and national councils elected by freshwater anglers and hunters. The only anomaly to this is the Taupo fishery administered on behalf of all fishermen by DOC. The reason for this anomaly is Tuwharetoa. The creation of what is essentially a private fishery run by a private organisation using a public resource (as this clause does) sets a precedent that is unacceptable to anglers nationally.

Section 7.21
As referred to in 6.28 – 6.30 (above), this statement lacks validity and doesn’t stand up to scientific scrutiny. The idea that the introduction of trout into the Taupo aquatic ecosystems was somehow singlehandedly responsible for the collapse of the native fisheries is patently nonsense. This is exemplified elsewhere where native fisheries have collapsed in the absence of trout being present. Many other human activities, including those practiced by Tuwharetoa, have contributed to such collapses.

The introduction of trout has been a huge benefit to all New Zealanders, including Tuwharetoa. This is no better illustrated than by the fact that they want to include trout in their Treaty Settlement, despite it being inappropriate to do so.
  
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Re: TROJAN HORSES AND TAUPO FISH FARMS
Reply #5 - Jun 29th, 2015 at 1:44am
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From COLIN TAYLOR - ex NZFFA Executive Member

As Alan (Simmons) says, dwelling on the past or trying to “correct” historic events will get us nowhere. It’s now that counts. In this regard, a Dominion-Post newspaper article reported a Taupo District Court case in which the Department of Conservation Taupo charged a Turangi man, Jamahl Hona, with poaching by netting trout in the Omori Stream. In stressing the seriousness of the offence, DoC staff told the court … and I quote … “Trout fishing brought in about $90 million annually to the Taupo economy.” DoC’s case was supported by Tuwharetoa Maori Trust Board secretary, Rakei Taiaroa, who told the court “the board collected about $700,000 a year” from the sport fishery. As Tony (Orman) constantly points out that according to numerous overseas cases, it is well known that trout bred in captivity generate several highly contagious diseases which are almost certain to spread into surrounding wild waters. Just one of many precedents for this is the spread of Myxobolus cerebralis among wild trout populations in the USA referenced as follows:  “However, it has recently become established in natural waters of the Rocky Mountain states (Colorado, Wyoming, Utah, Montana, Idaho, New Mexico), where it is causing heavy mortalities in several sportfishing rivers. Some streams in the western United States have lost 90% of their trout.” [Tennyson, J. Anacker, T. & Higgins, S. (January 13, 1997). U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Whirling Disease Foundation News Release.]

Living in the present and not in the past, why then would anyone, let alone members of the NZ Federation of Freshwater Anglers, want to support a proposed project involving Ngati Tuwharetoa and DoC that is very likely to risk introducing deadly diseases by breeding trout in captivity – knowing that this could wipe out the Taupo sports fishery and destroy a $90 million income to the Taupo region every year? And risk a $700,000 a year income for Tuwharetoa? Just on an economic basis alone, let alone recreational considerations, the proposal to raise trout in captivity for “harvesting” for any reason is totally irresponsible and could have a disastrous economic effect on the lives of hundreds of Maori and non-Maori who benefit directly or indirectly through employment from the current wild fishery. The fact of the matter is, if we want to help Taupo-Turangi Maori in relation to supporting the local economy, local businesses and employment-wise, we should strongly oppose any form of trout farming for “special events” or for any other reasons.

  
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Re: TROJAN HORSES AND TAUPO FISH FARMS
Reply #6 - Jun 29th, 2015 at 2:09am
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More from COLIN TAYLOR...
The fact is that “farmed” trout (i.e. kept in captivity) are reared using fish pellets (containing up to 86% yummy abbatoir waste along with some fish scraps and fish oil) and as a result they don’t have the “nice” taste of wild Taupo trout.

Also note this quote:  ‘Confinement and high stocking rates are stressful on farmed fish greatly increasing the frequency of disease outbreaks that can affect both farmed and wild species. Due to frequent disease outbreaks in aquaculture facilities antibiotics and chemical additives are commonly used. - Development and pharmacokinetic evaluation of erythromycin lipidic formulations for oral administration in rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) - by Francesca Serdoz 2011..


It stands to reason Nigel, that if diseases propagated in fish farms then transfer to wild trout populations – that don’t have the “benefit” of regular doses of  “antibiotics” – the results are disastrous and as previously referenced in USA Rocky Mountain states, can wipe out up to 90% of wild trout in affected rivers and lakes. Imagine if Taupo lost 90% of its trout population! How many anglers would be buying a licence?

The Office of Treaty Settlements proposals calls for young Ngati Tuwharetoa Maori to be trained by DoC in raising and “harvesting trout” for special events. However, instead of subjecting hui and tangi guests of Ngati Tuwharetoa to revolting and insipid “farmed” trout loaded with “antibiotics” and “chemical additives,” why can’t DoC rangers train young Maori licence holders in the skills of legal trout fishing – using legal angling methods like fly fishing, trolling, harling and jigging? With a limit of three trout per angler per day, just 20 young “skilled” Maori could provide 60 tasty wild trout for a special event from just one day’s legal fishing and 120 to 180 trout for a special event from just two or three days legal fishing!

If Tuwharetoa adults no longer possess the skills to catch trout legally, I am sure the Guides Association and a number of trout fishing clubs, would be only too pleased to call for volunteers in order to help train Tuwharetoa youngsters in the skills of catching trout legally.

  
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Re: TROJAN HORSES AND TAUPO FISH FARMS
Reply #7 - Jun 29th, 2015 at 2:42am
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From STRATO COTSILINIS, exec member NZFFA

Thank you for your comments.

However with regard to the disease risk, those who are proposing the fish farming operation will no doubt point out that the Turangi Hatchery has been raising trout for decades without any risk of disease.   Why would the fact that one part of the hatchery will be used by Ngati Tuwharetoa suddenly give rise to a disease risk?

I am totally opposed to commercial trout farming for all the reasons that everybody has so passionately described in recent correspondence.  However I would not have been so concerned had the proposal only been related to raising a few fish for special events within the current hatchery system.   My main concern however is that the proposal also includes the ability of Tuwharetoa to build additional structures on the land.   If the proposal is truly only to supply a few fish for special events, why would any additional structures be required?   This sounds to me like a significantly bigger operation than they are trying to portray
  
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Re: TROJAN HORSES AND TAUPO FISH FARMS
Reply #8 - Jun 29th, 2015 at 2:47am
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From ALAN SIMMONS
Colin to my knowledge it doesn't raise any fry for release... they are only for the children fish out ponds and it never has as it was always just a back up in case of volcanic eruptions... It may have slid a few surplus fish off now and again, like to Tarawera but generally it did no produce like Rotorua hence them getting rid of the hatchery manager 25 plus years ago..
  
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Re: TROJAN HORSES AND TAUPO FISH FARMS
Reply #9 - Jun 29th, 2015 at 2:51am
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From Andrew Christmas, Fishing Guide, Turangi...

http://www.taupotroutguide.com/2012/08/10/wild-taupo-fishery-yeah-right/
  
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Re: TROJAN HORSES AND TAUPO FISH FARMS
Reply #10 - Jun 29th, 2015 at 2:55am
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From COLIN TAYLOR...

Ngati Tuwharetoa representatives released a press statement saying that “only a small number of trout” are involved in regards to supplying food for “special events.”

So instead of DoC staff being charged with training young Maori “to raise and harvest trout” wouldn’t it be much better for DoC rangers and maybe volunteer members of fishing clubs (including me as a member of the Auckland Freshwater Anglers Club) to teach young Maori the skills of catching trout legally for huis, tangis etc?

That would serve a dual purpose of giving young local Maori a healthy recreational interest and a sense pride in being able to provide for the tangis and huis while obviating a disastrous disease risk to the Lake Taupo region via trout farming.

With a current limit of three trout per day –  just 10 young “skilled” young Maori could provide 30 trout for a hui or tangi from one day’s fishing – or 60 trout from two days fishing. (The catch rate per angler in Lake Taupo has been historically cited as one trout per hour of legal fishing). Perhaps the 3-fish limit could even be extended for young Maori specifically fishing for a special event – especially on Lake Rotaira which is owned and operated by Maori.

  
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Re: TROJAN HORSES AND TAUPO FISH FARMS
Reply #11 - Jun 29th, 2015 at 2:57am
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From STRATO COTSILINIS, exec member NZFFA

The Turangi hatchery has been raising trout to adulthood for years as it runs its own childrens fishing program and supplies us (Wellington F&G) and Stratford with adult fish.(3yr olds) It does not supply Tarawera which is supplied by the Rotorua  hatchery
  
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Re: TROJAN HORSES AND TAUPO FISH FARMS
Reply #12 - Jun 29th, 2015 at 3:06am
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From NORRIE DAY, exec member NZFFA

I totally agree Colin, farmed fish of any species are far removed from their wild cousins . Let's get down to basics!  For Ngati Tuwharetoa to farm trout the Government will need to change the law as trout farming under present legislation is illegal. Okay let's presume that Tuwharetoa gets the go ahead to start a trout farm at Turangi. Fish farms produce a lot of effluent, and where will it end up? In the Tongariro along with the diseases that confined fish in  pens generates . Several years ago I travelled to England and Scotland  and saw for myself what fish farms produce. They produce crap. Not only have these Countries got numerous fish farms but the various diseases are rampant. I was informed that three fish farms had been closed down by order of the Ministry of Fisheries because two shipments of farmed fish were suspect of disease and unfit for human consumption. The fish farms of Scotland produce more effluent than Glasgow. In England I was a guest at a fish farm and invited to fish one of their lakes. I caught several trout, the biggest was a massive rainbow hen weighing 15lb-9ozs. That fish I landed like a lame duck. No fight, I just beached it like a rag doll. I can imagine me hooking a wild rainbow of that size  up the Rurakituri river.  On leaving this fish farm   I passed  by the area where they smoked your catch. The flesh of these farmed fish was a dirty grey colour. Also the caged regal salmon that we get in our local supermarkets looks very attractive, but how many consumers realize that the flesh of these fish contain  artificial  colouring.I have been fighting this bloody trout farming since the early 1970's . When will this Country learn that tourism is the second biggest industry of NZ and freshwater fishing plays a major part in that industry.

  
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Re: TROJAN HORSES AND TAUPO FISH FARMS
Reply #13 - Jun 29th, 2015 at 3:28am
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From DON SCOTT, executive NZFFA
I feel I must also add my comments to this issue. I have to declare at the onset I am not totally opposed to the commercial propagation of trout. It is an environment I grew up in before I got to New Zealand and without it I doubt if I would ever have had an interest in angling. Also it is a vital ingredient in the sport fly fishing industry in Southern Africa where hatcheries stock dams but their real purpose is to grow fish for market. Also I have fished extensively in the UK where 'fish farming,' particularly trout, is practiced on a large scale. Lakes and dams are extensively stocked and an industry catering to millions of fisherman has evolved where the sums make the turnover in New Zealand look like a kids picnic party. So called 'trout farming is not always bad and can have great beneficial effects. Having been financially involved in such a venture myself I doubt if the commercial production of trout at the moment would be a success in New Zealand as salmon are already produced in quantity and taste better anyway.

Much is said about the disease aspect of the Taupo hatchery. As Strato points out grown fish have been supplied for years to their children's fish out days and disease has not been an issue. Likewise our children's fishout days in Palmerston North over many yearsacquire fish from Rotorua and were put in the lagoon and afterwards released. These fish have found their way into the Manawatu river and it is said that this was the reason why rainbows now predominate at the expense of browns. Again disease does not appear to be a problem. Further thousands of fish are hatched and the Rotorua lakes are stocked and without this, these waters would not be as productive as they are now. Again disease does not appear to be an issue. The key here is the proper husbandry of the resource and the practices developed by Fish and Game and others illustrates that it can be controlled. If we try and make this one of the main pillars against fish farming it will only be a matter of time before someone comes up with an argument that will shoot ours down in flames. Poaching is another argument against 'fish farming.' It is going on already and I doubt if trout being available for sale will make any real difference.

You received a comment from Nigel on Wednesday June 17 where he outlined his thoughts on the issue. This was well balanced and I have yet to hear any real counter arguments to the points made by him. I can not help thinking that there are deeper underlying issues than just 'trout farming' here.

At the AGM in Christchurch the demise of various traditional waters were highlighted during a presentation on the diversion of a river course in the area. This plus other developments including the construction of various water storage schemes has badly affected traditional wild water fishing but has resulted in other unexpected benefits. Farmers night storage dams, canals and ponds for irrigation purposes have acquired trout, some of which it is alleged have grown to enormous size. Perhaps New Zealand is not ready for this yet but one day fishing pressures may dictate that what is done in South Africa and Britain may become necessary if our wild fishing waters continue to decline. Just because the Federation was founded on opposition to trout farming, wider issue are now to hand and we should not let the current issue at Taupo cloud our real purpose and that is an overall improvement in our sport..
  
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Re: TROJAN HORSES AND TAUPO FISH FARMS
Reply #14 - Jun 29th, 2015 at 3:29am
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From IAN RODGERS, exec NZFFA
An excellent and well thought through note. However if I may I'd like to put a question to you. One which is all about 'what makes our wonderful wild country fishery' different from the examples that you give Don.

The rivers and streams of NZ are unique in that by and large they are 'wild fisheries', and this together with their 'remoteness' and being in such a 'natural state', is the reason that overseas anglers (together with many NZ'ers) travel long distances and at great expense to come here to fish.

Such is the uniqueness  of our world renown wild fishery. Surely it is this we are endeavoring to protect Don? To fish in a dam or a hatchery pool is not really what 'going fishing' is all about here?  (And I am not just being parochial here Don!)

This is why I am the ardent fisherman that I am, loving our egalitarian way of being able to venture out into such a wild fishery, sited in such beautiful often wild country and which I will do my best endeavour to protect and to retain, to the best of my ability Don.

The question - are we not talking about two very different subjects, even although the have a common thread - fish?

May I suggest that the following quote says it all Don

“Many men go fishing all of their lives without knowing that it is not fish they are after”

― Henry David Thoreau

  
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