Scientific name
Branchiostegus auratus/Branchiostegus argentatus
Hong Kong
Production method
Bottom gill netting
IUCN status
Not evaluated
Stock status

Both species have fast growth rates, hence they are not particularly susceptible to fishing pressures. There is only limited information available on the species.  

Ecological effects

Demersal gillnetting in Hong Kong waters causes significant damage to some endangered, threatened, protected (ETP) species, particularly marine mammals and elasmobranchs (e.g. sharks and rays). Discard rates of the fishery in Asia are known to be low as non-target catches can be used as fishmeal. Gillnets are a non-selective gear; hence bycatch rate is high.  Information regarding ecosystem changes caused by this fishery is lacking. The harvest method can also impact shallow water habitats to deeper benthic communities. 


A basic management framework is established throughout China, and in particular in Hong Kong. Management is considered marginally effective. Compliance and enforcement measures are not always effective and enforcement has failed to achieve good results due to the lack of information on management procedures. There are some measures in place (mainly monitoring actions) to protect ETP species, in particular marine mammals. Some measures are in place for avoiding unwanted catches, such as minimum allowed mesh sizes. Several protected areas have been established in Hong Kong waters. However, fishing is banned from just less than 0.01% of the waters. Moreover, there is a trend to strengthen regulation on illegal unreported and unregulated fishing (IUU).