8 May 2017 - 30 May 2017

Report period: 8 May – 30 May 2017

During the sixth month of the NSW north coast meshing trial (8–30 May, 2017), nets were deployed for totals of 22–23 days at five beaches and each checked between 12 and 33 times (Table 1).  The contractors are required to check the mesh nets twice a day, but if the weather or bar conditions prevent safe access, then fewer checks are made.

Table 1. The number of days that mesh nets were deployed at each beach, and the number of times each mesh net wash checked between 8 and 30 May, 2017.

Beach

Number of days net deployed

Number of times net checked

Seven Mile, Lennox Head

22

12

Sharpes, Ballina

22

12

Shelly, Ballina

23

14

Lighthouse, Ballina

23

15

Main, Evans Head

22

33

In total, 22 individuals from eight species were caught in the mesh nets. Eight animals were released alive, while 14 were found dead and had tissue samples retained for analyses (Table 2).  One target shark, a White Shark, was found dead in the Sharpes Beach net.

Table 2. The numbers of each species caught in the mesh nets that were alive and released, or dead at each beach.

Beach

Species

Number alive

Number dead

Seven Mile, Lennox Head

Pygmy Devilray

2

4

Sharpes, Ballina

Australian Cownose Ray

0

1

 

Great Hammerhead Shark

0

1

 

Longtail Tuna

0

2

 

White Shark

0

1

Shelly, Ballina

Bottlenose Dolphin

0

1

 

Pygmy Devilray

0

1

 

Whitespotted Eagle Ray

1

0

Lighthouse, Ballina

Australian Cownose Ray

2

0

 

Common Blacktip Shark

0

2

 

Longtail Tuna

0

1

 

Pygmy Devilray

2

0

Main, Evans Head

Pygmy Devilray

1

0

TOTAL

 

8

14