The course of fisheries as per week 49/2017

Published: by Jarle A. Hansen

Strong winds hampered fishing operations.

Atlanto Scandic herring
As expected, last week’s volume came out lower than the foregoing week, and totally 13.600 MT were caught. The main part was caught during the first half of the week as later, the weather was too rough.
As we have seen previously, the fishing has been performed in two areas, and in one area with less volume.
From the Norwegian Sea, over a larger area, it was taken 7.600 MT shared on twelve catches where the catch volumes varied from 125 – 1.200. The herring is of good size; 342-373 g. The herring is still more westerly than has been the rule over the last years, but observations now indicate a migration going east. The catches taken further east, are some 175 n.m. west of Værøy Island.
In Kvænangen mainly smaller vessels have been operating, and in this area the volume caught is about 5.600 MT. Looking further into it, the catches are shared on 59 registrations, and the size varied from 10 to 420 MT. The size of the herring; 199 -228 g.
In the area from Møre to Trøndelag counties, some 300 MT were caught. The size here was from 217-240 g.
Close to 390.000 MT of this year’s quota are now taken. This is 90 % of the total quota, and the remaining part may be postponed into 2018. As some vessels still will be fishing, we do expect some herring activity also in the forthcoming week.  - We all hope for a weather improvement.

North Sea herring
Unstable weather with numerous low pressures, were hampering fishing operations and just 3.200 MT were registered. Of this volume, 1.700 MT were taken early during the week and further 1.500 MT on Sunday.
As we have seen, the operations are carried out in the EU zone. Most catches were taken east-southeast of Shetland, but - also one catch at Fladen. The size is relatively small; 140 -198 g – as also has been the case this autumn.
On Tuesday the 5th of December, the Directorate increased the admittance for vessels to fish in in EU waters. At the same time, the possibility to catch a quantity with reference to the quota flexibility rules in EU waters, was abolished for purse seiners and trawlers.
As already mentioned above for Atlanto Scandic herring, the quota for North Sea herring has passed 90 % and totally 132.360 MT are now taken. Of the “EU-volume” close to 16.000 MT remain, - of a total of 60.000 MT. This remaining part is not very likely to be caught before the turn of the year.

For mackerel; just two catches last week, with the modest volume of 400 MT. The mackerel was caught west of Shetland and the average weight was 408 and 388 g respectively.
On Sunday night one Norwegian vessel was at the field west of Shetland.

Ocean sprat
Two vessels have reported 945 MT of ocean sprat. The catches were taken in English sector at the well-known sprat bank, called “Silver Pit”.
The sprat in this area was of good size; some 75 pcs/kg. This size, and the fact of being taken by purse in a short time, make this sprat attractive to the consumption market. One catch got a very nice price at the auction where the sprat later was cured with seasoning.
Some 200 MT now remain of the quota of 10.000 MT. One vessel is now searching in the same area.

Indirect consumption
Just four vessels have been in operation and it was just a modest total of 485 MT of Norway pout, 232 MT of blue whiting 121 MT of horse mackerel and 109 MT of silver smelt.

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