The course of Fisheries as per week 7/2016

Published: by Jarle A. Hansen

The capelin quota in the vicinity of Iceland has been fulfilled.
Promising observations of blue whiting in the Atlantic.

Atlanto Scandic herring
As foreseen, the weekly volume of Atlanto Scandic herring was reduced. As a total just 2.300 MT were registered. One vessel from Shetland has caught 330 MT, and the remaining volume was taken by twelve costal vessels. The activity last week was in traditional fields off Møre, from "Buagrunnen" and southwards. For vessels in operation, the weather has been quite challenging with strong winds most of the time.
The size of the herring is still good, with weights between 315 and 345 g; the average was 335 g. The herring being caught near Møre has maturing roe and buyers are reporting of good roe quality.
In the forthcoming week just a few vessels will carry on their activity.

Capelin at Iceland
A good week to look back upon when it comes to capelin in Icelandic waters. With challenges both tracing the fish and harsh weather, it was good news to register the last catches paving the way for the main part of the vessels to secure their allowed quota.
The activity has been performed in well-known areas east of Iceland. The quality has been varying with sizes from 39 - 53 pcs/kg. Also the roe percentage has been varying reaching as much as 16 %. From time to time also stomach content has been a challenge. All these elements are important when it comes to price.
The demand for capelin for consumption purposes is quite good, and the catches are mainly sold for this purpose, both to Nw and Icelandic buyers. The prices have been good, but it is a challenge to cross the Norwegian Sea and still retain the high quality before landing the catch in Norway.
Looking at the quota statistic, it now remains only a minor part of the capelin quota. The Directorate decided accordingly to increase the quota unit from 0,3 to 1,75. The coastguard at Iceland was operating with different numbers and stopped the fishing just before midnight Sunday night.
Summing it up; the capelin season in Icelandic waters 2016 has proven to be one of the best, despite stormy weather and periods when the capelin was hard to get.

Blue whiting
Five vessels have reported 10.100 MT last week. All catches were taken in international  waters west of Ireland. Also when catching blue whiting, the weather has been quite a challenge. What has been positive is that when vessels hit fish, it has been standing quite dense and can fairly quickly be caught  - when just the weather is on fisherman's side.
The catches have been sold to high prices both to Norwegian and Icelandic buyers  - for meal&oil purposes.
In the forthcoming week several vessels are expected to participate. Following fulfilment of the capelin quotas, vessels are now heading west into the Atlantic.

As we just have seen when it comes to Atlanto Scandic herring, last week also came out with a very low volume for mackerel taken by foreign vessels. One Danish, two Scottish and one Irish vessel, reported 4.500 MT to be registered.
The mackerel now seems to migrate towards southwest. The catches last week were taken west of Northern Ireland and then further on to the west of the Hebrides. The size is varying from 345 to 450 g at the best. Some vessels fishing mackerel have also got some horse mackerel. 345 MT were landed last week.
The distance back to Norway when operating west of Ireland is huge, and thus we expect just modest landings in the forthcoming week. 

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