The Ministry for Primary Industries is introducing digital monitoring of commercial fishing. This is a major change for all permit holders and skippers, and will mean you need to change the way you currently submit your Catch Effort Data to FishServe, alongside some other significant changes.  

All permit holders will be required to start electronic reporting based on the reporting stage that they have been allocated to. The first stage can start reporting from 14 January 2019 and the last stage must start reporting by 1 December 2019 . More information on what stage permit holders are in and the stage dates is availble here.

What is Digital Monitoring?

Digital Monitoring is made up of the following components;


Catch and Effort reporting via e-logbooks

Compulsory for all over 28m trawl vessels from 1 October 2017.

For all other fishers, electronic catch reporting is the responsibility of the permit holder and is being introduced over eight stages between 14 January 2019 and 1 December 2019.

Find out more on the Fisheries New Zealand website

Geospatial Position Reporting (GPR)

Compulsory for all over 28m trawl vessels from 1 October 2017. 

For all other fishers, electronic position reporting is the responsibility of the vessel operator who will need to start reporting their position electronically when the permit holder they fish for starts electronic catch reporting.

Find out more on the Fisheries New Zealand website


Not currently required.

Find out more on the Fisheries New Zealand website  

Licensed Fish Receivers

All Licensed Fish Receivers need to submit electronic returns from 1 October 2017. Paper LFR returns will no longer be accepted.

For more information, see the LFR Digital Monitoring page here.

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Catch and Effort reporting via e-logbooks

Catch and effort returns have been replaced by event reports as specified in the new Fisheries (Reporting) Regulations 2017 and supporting circulars which can be found here

The following event reports are to be submitted electronically;

  • Trip Start
  • Catch (e.g. Trawl)
  • Processing
  • Disposal
  • Non-fish or Protected Fish Species
  • Landing*
  • Trip End

FishServe's Cedric application has been upgraded to meet the reporting requirements for over 28m trawlers. For more information, see the Cedric information page here.

Other e-logbook options are still under-development with other providers. More information on these as they are developed will be available on our e-logbooks and GPR systems page here

*For a Landing event report, it is probable that the user will not have all LFR details available at the time of submission. LFR details can be added by the user at a later date, by amending the event report via FishServe's online services website. There is a step by step guide for adding LFR details to landing reports available for the users here.

If electronic reporting fails whilst you are at sea

If your e-logbook fails,and you are unable to record event data, or unable to transmit event data you must notify MPI immediately of the nature of the failure by calling 0800 00 83 33 or 04 819 4690 (then Option 2), or emailing They will intruct you on what you need to do.

   If you are unable to record event data and have received a direction from MPI under regulation 43 of the Fisheries (Reporting) Regulations 2017:

  • use an alternative method of recording all the required event data and required trip-related data. Paper versions of the reports are available for download on our Digital Monitoring page here. We recommend downloading and printing some paper versions to carry onboard your vessel to have available in case of system failure.

   If you are unable to transmit event reports:

  • continue recording the event data.

Upon returning to port, in both cases, supply the appropriate event reports and trip-related data to FishServe via an authorised electronic device or through the FishServe website. Do not send in the paper versions you have used to record your data whilst at sea. The information needs to be entered and submitted electronically.

Protection and sharing of fishing marks

  • ER Reporters may have different location sharing settings for each permit holder they report for.
  • Restricting location only applies if the original completer is set to “Restrict location” for that permit holder.
  • These rules only apply to the original completer of a given report – as opposed to the completer of an amendment.

Effect in the FishServe website

All ER Reporters will now be required to set their fishing location sharing. For those already reporting under ER, location sharing has been set to “Shared” as this is consistent with their existing reporting.

When a new ER Reporter logs into Kupe for the first time they will be prompted to set their fishing location sharing in the ‘Complete missing details’ screen.

If the ER Reporter would like to change their fishing location sharing at any time, this can be accessed from “Manage my account” in the tool bar of the FishServe website.

Applicable report types and attributes

  • Restricting applies to the location (latitude and longitude) on catch reports and NFPS reports, (e.g. Start Location, Finish Location, End Of Set Location, Start Of Haul Location, and Diver-specific Start and Finish locations).
  • It applies equally to the system and manual latitudes/longitudes.
  • Other users will not be able to amend the Is Net Lost or Is Line Lost.
  • It does not apply to the location (latitude, longitude) on Trip Start, Trip End, Disposal or Landing reports.
  • These rules do not apply to any date/times.

Effect on viewing a restricted report

If a user who is not the original completer is viewing a report with a restricted location, the longitude and latitude will display with one decimal place (rounded).

Effect on amending restricted location details

If an ER Reporter has restricted their fishing location for a permit holder, other users besides the ER Reporter (original completer) will not be able to amend the fishing location or net/line lost of the reports for that permit holder.

If the location of a restricted report is to be amended, please contact the original completer. If you are having trouble contacting the original completer, please contact FishServe.

If the ER Reporter has chosen to share their location, ER managers & ER administrators are able to amend the location and net/line lost of the reports.

Geospatial Position Reporting (GPR)

A vessel must have a registered GPR device if it falls under one of the following criteria:

  • The vessel is owned by an overseas person as defined by section 7 of the Overseas Investment Act 2005
  • The vessel is over 28m in length
  • The vessel is going to be used at any time to fish for Orange Roughy, Scampi or Deepwater Clam
  • The vessel is fishing for any permits that are required to report electronically

All of the above vessels must be equipped with a GPR device as specified in the Fisheries (Geospatial Position Reporting) Regulations 2017 and supporting circulars. Existing ALCs are compliant with these regulations, so can continue to be used. 

The circulars are available on MPIs website here.

There are GPR and E-Logbook all-in-one solutions under-development with other providers, one of whom is FishServe's subsidiary company FINNZ. More information on these solutions can be found on our E-Logbooks and GPR systems page here

Mobile GPR

A mobile GPR is a GPR that is able to be moved from one vessel to another or be used when fishing without a vessel. The mobile GPR must be registered to the operator of the vessel/s and each vessel that is to use the mobile GPR must be linked within the vessel's registration details. If the mobile GPR is to be used for a tender, it should be named in the regstration to reflect this (e.g. 1234-T1, where 1234 is the vessel registration number of the "Mother Ship" and 1 is the number of the tender if there is more than one tender associated with the "Mother Ship") and is not linked in to the "Mother Ship" in the vessel registration.

For a list of approved technology providers for electronic catch and position reporting, see the MPI electronic catch and position reporting information page here.

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No fishers are currently required to install cameras. See the latest information from the Fisheries New Zealand website.

Commercial fishing vessels using surface long-lining (any length) and trawlers less than 28m in length are currently exempt from regulations for cameras. All other fishers are not yet required to comply.

Based on the current regulations:

  • cameras will not be required on vessels used solely by fishers hand-gathering
  • cameras will not be required for tenders used in purse-seining
  • cameras will not be required for land-based operations conducted without vessels, such as eeling
  • cameras will not be required on vessels solely supporting divers.

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  • Permit holders are responsible for purchasing and installing electronic catch reporting systems that meet MPI requirements and for transmitting their catch reports to FishServe (This cost may be incorporated into the e-logbook systems that are available).
  • Vessel operators are responsible for purchasing and installing geospatial position reporting (GPR) systems on their vessels and for transmitting the data to MPI

A number of companies are offering a range of products, so prices will depend on:

  • the vendor chosen
  • hardware and software already owned by fishers
  • style of technology chosen
  • whether fishers are able to transmit catch and position reports using cellular coverage, or whether they must use satellite-based systems.

Fisheries New Zealand has developed a guide to highlight some of the issues you should consider when purchasing technology.  You’ll find it on the Fisheries New Zealand website alongside information about the technology providers who have identified themselves as having suitable technology.

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You’ll find a range of guidance material and more information on the Fisheries New Zealand website