The course of the Fisheries as per week 38/2013

Published: by Jarle A. Hansen

The mackerel season got started with 17.000 MT registered on Thursday/Friday. Some lower activity during the weekend as the fleet were chasing the bigger mackerel. Low activity in other fisheries.

Following several weeks with search and modest catches, the mackerel fishing finally got started last week. As a grand total 23.800 MT were registered.
In the first part of the week bad weather and strong winds were dominating the fishing field. Just a few catches were reported in the northern part of the EU zone. On Wednesday the weather improved however, and the first promising indications were observed as a couple of catches were taken in the Nw zone. (grid 30-04). On Thursday (7.400 MT) and Friday (10.400 MT) the catching really got started with more than 80 catches on these two days alone. During the weekend it was a more modest result of just 4.500 MT. 

The catching in the Nw zone started some n. miles north of 62 °N, approx. 75 n. miles west of Stadt. The mackerel and hence the fleet moved south and on Saturday the southernmost catches were taken south of 61 °N.
The challenge has been to find the best sized fish. The best size has been observed in the EU zone where the average weight has been approx. 420 g. In the Nw zone the size has been varying more than 100 g The smallest mackerel (294 g) has been taken in the southern part. Further north in grid 30-94, the best average has been close to 400 g. The total average is 369 g. Compared to the same week last year this average is 58 g lower than the average then; 427 g. 

Following high variations both in size and daily catches, the prices have also been varying over the last week. As the best price in the auction, NOK 11,22 were reached - and at the lower end, just NOK 6,98. The week average was NOK 8,99. 

The trollers had just a modest quantity last week; some 400 MT. This is mainly due to a low number of vessels participating as several vessels already have taken their quota  - and also following the fact that bad weather hampered these vessels during the first part of the week. 

In the forthcoming week some tension will be linked to whether better sized fish will be available. The hope is that fish from the Norwegian Sea will migrate into the North Sea. With the entire fleet in activity and available fish of good size, we can maybe see a week of records for mackerel volume wise.

Atlanto Scandic herring
Just a few vessels have been hunting the herring in northern areas. - 380 MT were registered.
The catching can be divided in two sizes; just above 250 g and 315-300 -  dependant on fishing field.

The price; NOK 3,58 to 4,30 at the best.

Norway pout and blue whiting
Just one catch last week; 40 MT of blue whiting and 120 MT of Norway pout. The catch was taken southwest of Egersund.

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