The course of the Fisheries as per week 46/2013

Published: by Jarle A. Hansen

The Atlanto Scandic herring has "arrived" at the coast of Troms county. In the North Sea the first catches of ocean sprat were reported, - but again; no horse mackerel under the full moon.

Atlanto Scandic herring
An average week with 20.000 MT registered. The main reason for a relatively modest result is to blame harsh weather. The catching has been performed in two areas, one some 90 n.m. W/NW of Lofoten, another off Ringvassøy. From both areas some 10.000 MT were reported.  There has also been some smaller coastal catches.
The herring taken in high sea is still fairly good sized; 343 g as an average. Coastal herring just outside Troms is somewhat smaller; 329 g as an average. It is also registered even smaller herring at 300 g or below.
The prices have been increasing compared to week 45 and the average was NOK 5,34.  The smaller sized herring is paid between NOK 3,40 -3, 90.
As herring is observed close to the coast, high activity is anticipated  - in addition to larger vessels outside Lofoten. But again;  it all further depends on the weather.

North Sea herring
Some 6.000 MT were registered last week. The main part has been caught in the EU zone in different areas. In the northern part by 59° 30' N via Fladen and Forties and even further, south of "Devil's Hole". The size varies a great deal from 150 -244 g. And the prices are in the range of NOK 3,30 and upwards close to NOK 4,-
By the end of the week it has been a challenge to trace the best sized herring. On Sunday the fleet was mainly situated in the northern part where the herring has a size of  200 g. The buyers want the better sized herring, as herring below 200 g is hard to sell.

Horse mackerel
Some participants were still optimistic and were hoping for horse mackerel to appear by full moon.  But the result has been disappointing as just 5 smaller catches were registered, totalling 125 MT.
The season can be summed up by some 6.000 MT for consumption purposes which is lower than what is regarded as normal, - but still better than the very low yield from last year of just 3.100 MT.
Most vessels have no ceased fishing for the horse, and if it is still to appear in December outside Sogn as we saw in 2012, remains to be seen.

Norway pout
ollowing improved observations and good catches over the last weeks, several vessels are no aiming for the Norway pout fields. This resulted in the best week so far in the season with a total of 2.800 MT registered. 10 vessels have been participating.
As previously seen, the catching is carried out at Fladen in the EU zone. But the weather has been challenging in periods. In addition some vessels also finished due to broken trawling gear.
Lower global prices are influencing the price of Norway pout and the catches were sold for meal&oil at approx. NOK 1,60.

Following a vessel already at the sprat field, another joined early last week. "Havdrøn"  had a "full hit" getting 600 MT in a 24 hrs.' period with a quality fit for consumption. This at once kicked off a "fever" and 13 more vessels joined as well.  However the result during the weekend was not very impressing. The sprat is spread over large areas and not easily caught by net.  Neither trawling proved a successful method.
From the coast of Tønsberg 120 MT were reported. From Sogn 70 MT were reported fit for canning.


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