Oreos/Deepwater Dory

Oreos: Quick Facts

Scientific name: Allocyttus niger (black oreo), Neocyttus rhomboidalis (spiky oreo), Pseudocyttus maculatus (smooth oreo).

Other names: NZ dory, black dory, smooth dory, spotted oreo, brown oreo, NZ smooth dory, deepwater dory, deepsea dory (Australia), teifsee-petersfisch (Germany), peterfisch (Switzerland), dore austral (France, Switzerland).

Ranking: E (Red - Worst Choice)

Best Fish Guide: Oreos/Deepwater Dory

 Ranking: E  (Red - Worst Choice)

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Alternative choice: Trevally

Description: Oreos are deepwater fish that are long-lived (up to 150 years) and slow growing, making them highly vulnerable to fishing pressure and overfishing. There are three commercial species in New Zealand, but they are all managed as one quota management species. They are predominantly found in deep waters off the east and south of the South Island and off the Chatham Islands. Jointly with snapper, mako shark and southern bluefin tuna, oreos have the second worst ecological ranking on the Best Fish Guide of any commercial fishery in New Zealand.

Ecological concerns: Management of the three oreo species as one, a declining stock trend, uncertainty over stock boundaries, lack of stock assessments in some areas, unknown sustainability of catch limits and lack of a management plan. Attempts to improve research in the oreo fishery have been hampered by the seafood industry challenging and preventing the Ministry of Fisheries from commissioning research surveys.  

Also of great concern is the destructive impact of deep sea trawling on seamount habitats and high levels of non target fish bycatch. There is also a bycatch of marine mammals and seabirds.  

Economic value: Key markets are the USA, Australia, Germany and Switzerland, with smooth oreo being the main market species. Exports were worth $7.47 million in 2008.

ASSESSMENT OUTPUT

Biology and risk of overfishing (score E)
Status and sustainability of fish catches (score D)
Impact of fishing method and protected, threatened and endangered species captures (score E and D)
Management and management unit (score B and E)

For a full ecological assessment, click here