The course of fisheries as per week 2/2018
The second week of the year; - not the busiest in pelagic, and by the end of the week, harsh weather forced the fleet to port.
This year's best week - both for blue whiting and capelin.
Finally the vessels operating far west had weather window and 28 vessels got this year's record in one single week; a grand total of 44.300 MT. We must as far back as to 2008 to find a higher week volume. - We can also mention that this very year the season's yield reached 413.000 MT.
As previously this winter, the catches are taken in international waters outside the 200 n.m. borders of Ireland. The fleet has been spread over a several areas from 50° 30' - 53° N. As the wind calmed down on Tuesday, the fleet got into operation and during 72 hours 37.000 MT were registered. Such volumes in a short period are a challenge to be properly discharged. Waiting time has however been reasonable; - 24 hrs. at the most.
Closer to the weekend the wind again got stormy and the vessels were stand by. On Sunday it calmed down again and 12-14 vessels were in the area by the end of the week - west of the line.
The main part (41.700 MT) was sold for reduction purposes. The prices have been falling over the week; NOK 1,27 for short distance delivery in Killybegs and NOK 1,61 at the highest for delivery in Denmark.
Killybegs' buyers taking blue whiting for consumption purposes got 4 catches amounting to 2.500 MT. The prices related to these catches were between NOK 1,60 and 1,82. According to information received from these buyers, Irish vessels are successfully operating in Irish zone. - These vessels delivering short distance raw material, offer better quality for consumption purposes.
Following the still unsolved bilateral discussions with the European Union, even more vessels will participate in the forthcoming week. An over view of the season so far tells there has been caught 100.000 MT in international waters during a three weeks' period. Taking into account the weather conditions, this result is impressive.
In the Barents Sea there has been another week record; 9.000 MT of capelin registered. The fishing has been performed relatively near the coast from the Hjelmsøya Island by the beginning of the week, and further east to the area off the North Cape just before the hurricane "Reidun" hit Finnmark on Saturday. On Sunday one catch was taken west of Norkyn.
The size of the capelin has been fairly small over the season. Last week there was even a negative trend as by the beginning of the week the mixed size was 50 pcs/kg and by the end; 60 pcs/kg. For female capelin even smaller; 70 pcs/kg - which is very small sized capelin.
The maturation process are progressing quickly; from 18 % by the beginning of the week to 22 % by the end. Some individuals have even been spawning.
Of this year's quantity of just 38.980 MT, some 60 % are caught and 16.000 MT remain.
Hopefully better sized capelin will appear to cover the demand for more attractive sizes. From Russian sources it was reported to be capelin by the size of 50 pcs/kg - far east at 36° 20' E.
Strong winds hampered fishing operations.
High activity for the North Sea herring, while for Atlanto Scandic herring it is nearly over, - especially for the smaller vessels.
Record last week with more than 180 million individual herring being caught.
More than 37.000 MT of Atlanto Scandic herring last week - and some ocean sprat for consumption purposes.
Several challenges in the fisheries for Atlanto Scandic herring.
When weather conditions were not too severe last week; good results for Atlanto Scandic herring, - an increasing number of vessels into the North Sea herring fisheries, giving a better result, - and still some mackerel.