OK guys, it has now happened. The commerical landings for swordfish in the second half season have now for the first time in many years, hit 102% of the baseline quota. While first half was slower, the overall year we reached 80% of the baseline quota. The adjusted quota included an allowable carry forward of unsued quota but this will be gone fast and ICCAT is not likely to allow any greater carry forward of unused quota.
So here is exactly what I have warned about during the Swordfish Revitalization efforts. This is why I have preached reporting of recreational landings.
If we go over quota here is the likely scenario. First, recreational fishing may be stopped. PLL effort with directed permits will still be allowed to keep 15 fish per trip. incidental permits may go to 5 fish, I will check. Buoy gear is very selective for swords only so they may be restricted.
A some point in the future, we will have to fight for recreational specific quota. Maybe 300 to 500 tons or something like that. Not sure.
The past reporting will be our ownership of the shares of this quota.
This won't hit us today or tomorrow, but in the coming years, with the direction of landings increases, at some point we will have to fight for our right to recreational swordfish.
The bright side is we should not take any more hits on our quota at ICCAT negotiations, we now catch our quota of swordfish!