A happy New Pelagic Year to everyone!
Herring fisheries fairly good despite harsh weather up north. A lot of mackerel with good size in the west.
Atlanto Scandic herring
Despite windy periods, the herring fisheries got a good up north during the first week of 2017. 17.300 MT were registered and coastal vessels had 16.650 MT of this volume. The main part have been caught at the western side of Kvaløya Island. The reporting tells variable availability and volumes observed. In some areas the fishermen have to compete with killer whales and humpback whales.
Several of the bigger sized vessels headed for the Norwegian Sea to look for herring, and on Thursday "Havdrøn" reported 650 MT from an area some 139 n.m. southwest of Røst Island. Later arriving vessels were unable to catch due to the weather conditions.
From areas further north the variations of weight are higher compared to observations before Christmas. The average weight was from 365 g at the best and down to 275 in the low end. Obviously younger schools are now joining in. The highest share of grade 4 herring (125-200 g) was 19 %. The herring caught in the Norwegian Sea had an average weight of 355 g and just 1 % of grade 4.
The buyers declare the quality as good and a great part of the herring is being fileted.
Fat content and roe maturation seem to be as normal in this part of the year.
In the forthcoming week several more vessels will join in, and if weather improves, the activity is expected to be quite high. Hopefully the fleet will be widely spread both in fjords and open sea.
Also when it comes to mackerel the turn of the year gave a good start with 15.300 MT registered. This is except for one catch by "Ligrunn", all taken by twelve different foreign vessels. The vessels are mainly from Scotland and Shetland, but also some Danish and Irish vessels were included.
Four vessels having caught mackerel further west have also got some horse mackerel; 670 MT. Along the coast from Rogaland to Sogn counties, some 100 MT were taken by coastal vessels. The size is good; 4-500 g. Horse mackerel from EU waters were sized at 300 g.
North Sea herring
Four vessels have set sail for herring in the Skagerrak, but the results are modest. "Østerbris" got 130 MT. The herring is fairly small and not fit for consumption purposes and thus sold for reduction.
In the North Sea some vessels have been hunting herring in the Nw zone. The results are modest here as well and the vessels gave up after just a few days.
"Sjæringen Senior" has been catching in the Oslo Fjord area looking for coastal sprat. The vessel has been delivering twice in Sweden; altogether 34 MT. The average size was 40-50 pcs/kg. Last trip included also 11 MT of herring.