Fiordland Strategy Implementation

To assist with the management of the area four Implementation Plans have been developed by the management agencies (Ministry for the Environment, Department of Conservation, Ministry for Primary Industries and Environment Southland) and the Fiordland Marine Guardians.

  1. Biosecurity Plan
  2. Communication and Education Plan
  3. Compliance Plan
  4. Monitoring Plan

Biosecurity Plan

The introduction of an unwanted marine organism into the fiords could be catastrophic. Should an unwanted organism settle on the fiord walls and aggressively attack the wall communities, it could out-compete or suffocate the adjacent community. Of all likely threats to Fiordland’s fisheries and marine environment, bio-invasion is possibly the most serious.

As the number of people interacting with Fiordland increases so does the variety of potential pathways by which exotic species could be introduced.

The Fiordland Marine Area Biosecurity Plan provides a framework for agencies to work together on operational activities in relation to marine biosecurity. It outlines biosecurity measures to reduce the risk of invasive organisms that could adversely affect Fiordland's marine environment, and sets out steps to implement these measures.

The Ministry for Primary Industries is responsible for leading the implementation of the Biosecurity Plan.

Communication / Education Plan

Communicating information about the new management regime in Fiordland is particularly important if users are expected to comply with new rules. The Fiordland Marine Area Communications Plan was developed jointly by the Ministry for the Environment and Environment Southland, in conjunction with the Guardians. The plan is evolutionary. It focuses on the distribution of information and maintaining the profile of the Guardians.

The Ministry for the Environment is responsible for leading the implementation of the Communications Plan.

Compliance Plan 

Fiordland is a very challenging environment from a compliance perspective – it is isolated, the coastline is extensive, access is limited and the weather can be unrelenting. For these reasons, high levels of voluntary compliance with the rules are critical for the success of the management regime.

The Fiordland Marine Area Compliance Plan adopts a carrot and stick approach to compliance – (encouragement to comply with the rules voluntarily, combined with an effective deterrent against illegal activities). This approach underpins the Ministry of Fisheries, Department of Conservation and Environment Southland activities in Fiordland by

  • informing and educating fishers and other users about the rules in the management package 
  • being the eyes and ears on the water (surveillance)
  • supporting enforcement action (prosecution).

The Ministry for Primary Industries is responsible for leading the implementation of the Compliance Plan.

Monitoring Plan

Monitoring the effectiveness of the new management regime is as important as the development of the regime in the first place. The Fiordland Marine Area Monitoring Plan sets out indicators for fisheries, values of special significance, risks to the marine environment, and an overview of the success of the strategy.

The Department of Conservation is responsible for leading the implementation of the Monitoring Plan.

The Department of Conservation worked with the Fiordland Marine Guardians and other management agencies to develop the goals and objectives for each of the broad management areas/changes within the Fiordland Marine Area / Te Moana o Atawhenua.

With the outcomes for each area decided, the group was then able to develop monitoring objectives against which they could measure the results for each of the areas.

The next step is for government agencies to conduct research projects to address the various objectives under the plan and inform the agency-Guardian team.