The course of the fisheries as per 1st of February 2010

Published: by Norges Sildesalgslag
New record for herring volume in one single month. The fleet scatters following the new EU agreement – and opening for capelin at Iceland. Atlanto Scandic herring
Due to changing weather there were moderate volumes with herring last week; 53.300 MT as a total. This is in fact the lowest volume during one week this season, however, enough to set a new record for herring in one single month! 316.000 MT have been sold during January, – some 20.000 MT above the record from January 2008. An incredible quantity, indeed, and if we assume the herring has an average weight on 280 g, this results in 1.129.642.857 individual herrings last month. In other words; more than 1 billion herrings!

The herring is now moving fast southwards and the last catches were reported from the “regular herring spot” at Buagrunnen. This is a few days earlier than normal. In addition to catching off Møre, 30 vessels are operating at the northern field between Myken and Tennholmen. The size of the herring is from 205 to 306 g, with an average of 272 g. Pricewise this gives minimum prices or prices slightly above, with an average at NOK 2,17.In the forthcoming week high activity is expected from both coastal and trawler vessels. Purse seiners are mainly busy on other fisheries.
Mackerel
6 catches were reported from foreign vessels last week, totalling 7.400 MT. The catching is carried out South off Ireland resulting in a long sailing distance to reach Nw ports. The average size has improved; 390 – 460 g. This gives better prices, but final results will be ready only when delivered.

Sprats at open sea
Following the agreement with EU, 6 vessels headed for sprat in the Southern part of the North Sea. The hope was that the effect following the full moon should give results. During the weekend three vessels have reported catches from 270-1.100 MT, totalling 2.000 MT. The catches are sold for meal&oil purposes at NOK 1,50-1,75.

Capelin
The two search vessels, “H Østervold” and “Rogne” set again sail by the end of last week after having been waiting for weather improvement for some time. - No capelin has been registered so far.

The Icelanders opened their catching by the end of last week giving Norway a quota of 28.431 MT. The Directorate organised regulations and 32 vessels headed for Iceland immediately, having a max quota on 900 MT. Already on Sunday afternoon the number of vessels reached the limit and further vessels were hold back.

Blue whiting
Three vessels arrived at the blue whiting field during the weekend, but so far no catching has been reported. The vessels are operating West off Porcupine, but no significant quantities have been observed so far.

Bergen, 1st  of February 2010

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