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Reported retained annual catch from Commonwealth fisheries logbooks

While at sea, Commonwealth fishers must record all catch and effort in their AFMA daily fishing logbooks. The recorded weights are estimates only. This dataset shows the annual retained catch (meaning the catch that is not returned to the sea) that fishers have recorded in their logbooks for Commonwealth fisheries managed by the Australian Fisheries Management Authority (AFMA). The catch data is provided by fishery, by gear, by species, by weight (kg), and by calendar year. Fish discarded at sea are not included in this dataset. Location of catches within a fishery is not included.

Appropriate use and limitations of the data

The catch weight data in logbooks are estimates only which have been recorded by fishers while at sea. Fishers usually cannot accurately weigh fish at sea, so the estimated weights are mostly based on volume (for example, the size and number of boxes of fish caught). Catch weights are used in combination with logbook gear, effort and spatial data to inform stock assessments.

When the fish are landed at port, the accurate weight of fish is recorded in AFMA catch disposal records by both the fisher and fish receiver permit holder. This data is also available on data.gov.au (see Reported landed annual catch from Commonwealth fisheries).

The dataset shows the amount in kilograms of each species retained by fishery by year. You will need to be careful when interpreting trends in this data because there are many factors that can affect catches each year. For example management measures such as total allowable catch, closing fishing areas, reducing boat numbers or banning the catch of a particular species can lower catches. Similarly, changes in market demand can affect which species are targetted.

These data may differ from other summations over the same time period (such as stock assessment reports) due to differences in data handling procedures. For example, scientists may filter out catches from their assessments because of data quality issues or group species differently.

In addition, the data may be different in other datasets with different summations such as catch by season or catch from the date fish were landed at port.


The data provided by AFMA is raw (unprocessed) data and may contain errors or be incomplete. Errors are more likely in the species caught in low volumes. AFMA makes no warranty or representation that the data is accurate or complete. Those who choose to use this data should make their own enquiries as to its accuracy and completeness and AFMA assumes no liability for any errors or omissions in the data provided, or for any decision by a person who chooses to rely on the data.

Read the metadata (attached below) for further information about the dataset.

Data and Resources

Additional Info

Field Value
Title Reported retained annual catch from Commonwealth fisheries logbooks
Type Dataset
Language English
Licence Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Australia
Data Status active
Update Frequency annually
Landing Page https://data.gov.au/data/dataset/66e2f256-5255-4f35-ae07-3f0b1ebf8f82
Date Published 2016-05-05
Date Updated 2020-06-30
Contact Point
Australian Fisheries Management Authority
Temporal Coverage 01-01-2002 - 31-12-2018
Geospatial Coverage http://www.ga.gov.au/place-names/PlaceDetails.jsp?submit1=GA1
Jurisdiction Commonwealth of Australia
Data Portal data.gov.au
Publisher/Agency Australian Fisheries Management Authority
Geospatial Topics Oceans