The Fisheries Program conducts biological, ecological and fisheries research and modelling, and provides scientific advice to State and Commonwealth Governments on issues related to the ecologically sustainable utilisation of Australia's fisheries resources. Click here to download the Fisheries Capability Statement (.pdf).

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The program is led by Dr Stephen Mayfield. It includes five subprograms.

Scientists specialise in the biology and ecology of marine fishes and invertebrates, and fisheries biology and stock assessment.

Staff work closely with State and Commonwealth fisheries research agencies, industry organisations and other stakeholders, and have strong collaborations with researchers in other agencies and universities.

The program's focus on stock assessment of key species is achieved by investigating and better understanding their life history and ecology to determine the effects of fishing on populations.

The primary outputs are stock assessment reports that provide the scientific basis for sustainable fisheries management.

Scientific findings are published in peer-reviewed reports, and national and international journals.

Offshore Crustacean Fisheries

Dr Adrian Linnane leads this subprogram, which is focused on southern rock lobster and giant crab. Research involves analysis of data from logbooks, voluntary catch sampling, puerulus monitoring and fishery-independent surveys.

Inshore Crustacean Fisheries

This subprogram focuses on the Western King prawn and blue swimmer crab. Research is focused on stock assessment surveys and fishery assessments against biological indicators of stock status.

Molluscan Fisheries

This subprogram focuses on two species of abalone (greenlip and blacklip), several cephalopods (southern calamari and giant cuttlefish) and bivalves (scallops and cockles). Under the leadership of Dr Stephen Mayfield this program conducts fishery-independent surveys, evaluation of unfished areas and modeling.

Finfish Fisheries

The Finfish Subprogram includes three research groups: pelagic, demersal, and estuarine fishes.

The pelagic fishes research group, led by Assoc. Prof Tim Ward, conducts research on the SA Sardine Fishery and Commonwealth Small Pelagic Fishery.

Dr Tony Fowler leads the demersal fishes research group, which undertakes research on SA's complex, multi-species, multi-gear Marine Scale-fish Fishery. The primary focus is on the population dynamics and fisheries biology of King George whiting, snapper, and garfish.

Led by Dr Greg Ferguson, the estuarine fishes research group conducts research on mulloway, yellow-eye mullet, flounder and black bream in SA's estuaries, especially the Lower Lakes and Coorong.

Fisheries Modelling

Under the guidance of Dr Rick McGarvey, this subprogram develops stock assessment models and provides leadership in statistics, survey design, and data analysis across the Wild Fisheries Program. A primary role is to infer the changing abundance of fish stocks over time from multiple fishery data sources for fishery management. 


Dr. Stephen Mayfield
SARDI Aquatic Sciences
Tel: 08 8207 5427 Fax: 08 8207 5406
PO Box 120, Henley Beach, SA, 5022