The aim of this paper is to review the recent management of the Ross Sea toothfish fishery (including the 3-year experiment), to identify key operational and research objectives for the fishery over the next 5–7 years in relation to Article II of the Convention, and to develop an operational framework to achieve those objectives. The paper focuses primarily on Antarctic toothfish, as catches of Patagonian toothfish are negligible, and covers Subareas 88.1 and 88.2. We begin by summarising the operational management and conduct of the fishery up to the 2004–05 fishing year (prior to the start of the 3-year experiment). This includes the reasons why the 3-year experiment was initiated and the key objectives of the experiment. We then go on to summarise the operational changes which formed the framework of the 3-year experiment, and to review the success and/or any problems associated with each of those changes. Next we identify key operational and research objectives for the fishery over the next 5–7 years in relation to Article II of the Convention. As part of this process we identify uncertainties in our current knowledge which need to be addressed to fulfil the requirements of Article II. These include, for example, uncertainty in the biological parameters and stock assessment of Antarctic toothfish, uncertainty in its ecological relationships with predators and prey, and uncertainty over other ecosystem effects of fishing. Finally, we provide recommendations on the development of an operational framework for the fishery.
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