Nototodarus sloanii


Wellington flying squid, Arrow squid, Flying squid, Encornet minami, Pota neozelandesa


arrow squid

Wellington flying squid Nototodarus sloani which stock structure is not well understood is found in and South to the Subtropical Convergence and Gould’s flying squid Nototodarus gouldi found around New Zealand and North of the Subtropical Convergence. Both species have distinct geographical distributions but occur around New Zealand thus are combined for management purposes (MPI, 2012a; MPI, 2014). Due to both lifetime (e.g. short life span) and fishery characteristics there is no proper assessment of these units that are considered only for management purposes: Kermadec (SQU10T), Southern Islands (SQU6T) and East and West NZ, including remaining areas except Kermadec and Southern Islands (SQU1T & SQU1J).


No related analysis


Management Quality:

Management Strategy:


Managers Compliance:


Fishers Compliance:


Stock Health:



Future Health:



No related FIPs


  • New Zealand Arrow squid Trawl:



Within FishSource, the term "fishery" is used to indicate each unique combination of a flag country with a fishing gear, operating within a particular management unit, upon a resource. That resource may have a known biological stock structure and/or may be assessed at another level for practical or jurisdictional reasons. A fishery is the finest scale of resolution captured in FishSource profiles, as it is generally the scale at which sustainability can most fairly and practically be evaluated.

NZ Southern Islands (SQU6T) New Zealand Bottom trawls
Midwater trawls





Last updated on 27 August 2012

Due to biological characteristics of the species - annual life cycle and death after spawning - stock assessment is not possible to be performed. Biomass data is not possible to be estimated (MPI, 2012a).


Last updated on 27 August 2012

Reliable estimates of the status of the stock are not achievable. Projections are also not possible to perform, including the estimation of the Maximum Constant Yield (MCY) and the Current Annual Yield (CAY) (MPI, 2012a).

Reference Points

Last updated on 27 Aug 2012

Biological or fishing mortality reference points are not set.


Last updated on 27 August 2012

As reference points are not set and the stock biomass is not estimated, it is not possible to know about the current stock status. “It is not known whether New Zealand squid stocks have ever been stressed through fishing mortality.” (MPI, 2012a). Survey indices are also not available.


Last updated on 27 Aug 2012

Years with lower landings (1987/88, 1992/93, 2002/03; around 1,550 – 7,000 tonnes) are previous to years with higher landings levels (above 33,000 tonnes). Between 1997/98 and 2002/03 landings were at around 6,020 tonnes (average). In the last years have been reducing due to several conservation measures applied to Hooker’s sea lion (details in the PET species section) (MPI, 2012a).



Last updated on 27 August 2012

For the fishing year 2010/11, TAC is set at 32,369 tonnes as since 1997/98. Several mitigation measures are in place to reduce the impact of the interaction of the fishery with other species (MPI, 2012a).

Recovery Plans

Last updated on 27 Aug 2012

Not applicable.


Last updated on 27 August 2012

Catches have generally been below the set TAC except for 2003/04 and 1993/94. Catch of non-target species is considered to be low (Ballara and Anderson, 2009).


ETP Species

Last updated on 29 August 2012

Hooker’s sea lion Phocarctos hookeri (Vulnerable; 2008 IUCN Red List) presents a declining trend of the pup production. A New Zealand sea lion species management plan: 2009–2014 is in place to reduce identified threats (DoC, 2009); the fishery impacts this species but capture in numbers have been decreasing (39 in 2000/01 to 0 in 2010/11, provisional data). Efforts are in place to minimize the interaction with this species: establishment of catch limits (annual fishing-related mortality limit, FRML) – that is recommended by the Ministry to be canceled in 2012 due to null recent interactions (MPI, 2012b); Sea Lion Exclusion Devices (SLEDs) since 2011/02 – which have been proven to minimize capture with a high proportion of survival but with some uncertainties – and a discount rate that quantifies SLEDs efficacy; a strike rate (estimated number of sea lion interaction for every 100 tows that would be fatal in the absence of SLEDs) that is updated and based on mathematical modeling; and temporal and/or spatial closures (MPI, 2012a,b).
The fishery also interacts with seabirds, especially White-capped Albatross Thalassarche steadi, Buller’s Albatross Thalassarche bulleri, Sooty Shearwater Puffinus griseus (all Near threatened; 2012 IUCN Red List) and White-chinned Petrel Procellaria aequinoctialis (Vulnerable; 2012 IUCN Red List). Mitigation measures in place – Brady bird bafflers, warp deflectors (mandatory since 2006) and offal management – are proven to be effective, capture in number have been reducing from 158 in 2002/03 to 92 in 2009/10 (MPI, 2012a).
The Wellington flying squid is also an important prey to New Zealand fur seals Arctocephalus forsteri (Least Concern; 2008 IUCN Red List), Hooker’s sea lion, Short-Beaked Common Dolphin Delphinus delphis (Least Concern; 2008 IUCN Red List) and seabirds (MPI, 2012a).

Other Species

Last updated on 27 August 2012

Bycatch fluctuate during the year, are low in the Auckland islands shelf fishery and consist of Snoek Thyrsites atun (barracouta), Jack mackerel Trachurus declivis, T. murphyi, T. novaezelandiae, Silver warehou Seriolella punctate and Picked dogfish Squalus acanthias (Ballara and Anderson, 2009).


Last updated on 27 August 2012

The species is an important prey to several predators like fish (e.g. hake, hoki, ling, red cod, southern blue whiting) and other ETP species (see ETP species section for further details). The impact on the seabed ecosystem is not fully known (MPI, 2012a).

Marine Reserves

Last updated on 27 Aug 2012

The Motu Maha Marine Reserve was designated in 2003, is ca. 484,000 ha and covers 12 nautical miles around the subantarctic Auckland islands, where trawl operations are banned (Chilvers, 2008; DoC, 2012). Is also a Marine Mammal Sanctuary with the aim to protect, besides Hooker’s sea lion, Southern right whale Eubalaena australis (Least concern; 2008 IUCN Red List) and Yellow-eyed Penguin Megadyptes antipodes (Endangered; 2012 IUCN Red list) breeding grounds (MPI, 2012b; DoC, 2012).

FishSource Scores



Different components of this unascertained score differently at the fishery level. Please look at the individual fisheries using the selection drop down above.

Different components of this unascertained score differently at the fishery level. Please look at the individual fisheries using the selection drop down above.


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Last updated on 27 August 2012

1) As a single government agency (Ministry for Primary Industries) is responsible for both scientific advice and management of the stock, we are assuming that set TACC = advised TACC.

2) No stock assessment is performed (MPI, 2012a) thus scores #1, #4 and #5 are not possible to be computed or determined qualitatively.

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Fishery Improvement Projects (FIPs)

No related FIPs


Marine Stewardship Council (MSC)



New Zealand Arrow squid Trawl


Withdrawn on 26 May 2015


"MRAG Americas, Inc. and the fishery client, the Deepwater Group Ltd, advise that the two New Zealand squid fisheries (New Zealand EEZ Squid Trawl Fishery (SQU1T) and Auckland Islands Squid Trawl Fishery (SQU6T)) have been withdrawn from MSC assessment. Fisheries Improvement Plans (FIPs) have been developed and remedial actions are being implemented for each of these two fisheries."

Certification Type:



Ballara, S.L., Anderson, O.F. 2009. Fish discards and non-target fish catch in the trawl fisheries for arrow squid and scampi in New Zealand waters. New Zealand Aquatic Environment and Biodiversity Report No. 38., 102 p.

Chilversw, B. L. 2008. New Zealand sea lions Phocarctos hookeri and squid trawl fisheries: bycatch problems and management options, Endangered species research, 5:193-204

Department of Conservation (DoC), 2009. New Zealand sea lion species management plan: 2009–2014. Department of Conservation, Wellington. 31p.

Department of Conservation (DoC, 2012). Conservation, Marine & Coastal, Auckland Islands / Motu Maha Marine Reserve. [Accessed on 27th August 2012]

FAO, 2012. Aquaculture Fisheries and Department, FAO Fishfinder, Species Fact sheets, Nototodarus sloani (Gray, 1849) [Accessed on 24th August 2012]

FAO Species catalogue VOL. 3. Cephalopods of the world. An Annotated and Illustrated Catalogue of Species of Interest to FisheriesClyde F.E. Roper Michael J. Sweeney Cornelia E. Nauen 1984. FAO Fisheries Synopsis No. 125, Volume 3

Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI), 2012b. Squid (SQU6T) – Final advice paper, 89 p.

Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI), 2012. Report from the Fisheries Assessment Plenary, May 2012: stock assessments and yield estimates. Compiled by the Fisheries Science Group, Ministry for Primary Industries, Wellington, New Zealand, 1194 p.

Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI), 2016. Fisheries Assessment Plenary May 2016: Stock Assessments and Stock Status. Arrow squid (SQU), (Nototodarus gouldi, N. sloanii), Wheketere. 16pp.



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    Wellington flying squid - NZ Southern Islands

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