The course of fisheries as per week 6/2018

Published: by Jarle A. Hansen

Moderate for capelin at Iceland – very first catches of herring at “Buagrunnen” this season.

Atlanto Scandic herring
Volumes considered, last week was not at the top. Close to 12.360 MT was registered. A reason for such a modest volume, is to be found in weather conditions. The entire week was dominated with both bad weather and difficult currents most of the days. The activities have been performed southwest of Skomvær, along the coast of Helgeland as far south as to “Buagrunnen” at Møre. Some foreign vessels have also been in operation.
Last week’s average size came out with 330 g, shared on purse; 8.990 MT, 1.600 MT for trawlers and 1.710 MT from foreign trawlers. 50 Norwegian vessels have been taking part, of which 7 were trawling. In addition, 4 foreign vessels were catching.
As mentioned above, the herring has reached as far south as Buagrunnen. The very first catch was taken on the 10th of February, while last year it was on the 9th, and in 2016 on the 14th of February. - We have to say that the herring is on schedule.
What we observe, is that the herring from this area has a size in the range of 270 – 350 g, with an average at 305 g. The roe percentage is said to be from 18 % and upwards. In the forthcoming week, we still expect high activity and good interest among the buyers.*

Capelin at Iceland
The capelin season at Iceland have so far not been remarkable. 12.360 MT were registered last week. Of this volume, 7.660 MT were registered for meal&oil purposes and 4.700 MT for consumption. The mixed size varies from 37 to 45 pcs/kg with an average at 41 pcs/kg. The roe maturing is at 11-12 %.
The operations are going on in several areas; from the ban barrier in the south at 64⁰ N 30’ and along the edge northwards, to 40 – 50 n.m. north of Langanes. The capelin taken in the south part was of good size and is without stomach content, making it fit for consumption purposes. Further north, the capelin is smaller and with stomach content.
The reason for getting such a low volume last week, is complex; one reason being that the low pressures have been queuing up. This again leads to vessels seeking port, waiting for weather to improve. Accordingly, the number of vessels having a catch allowance, has not been fully utilized. The rule is that 30 vessels can operate together. It is also a significant difference in size of vessels, with an impact on the possibility to operate during harsh weather.
This being the situation, has, - as we can understand, created some frustration among those vessels waiting, and with close to 60 vessels ready, it has to be good conditions to avoid waiting. Following bad weather and not the best fishing conditions for the capelin, the individual turn to fish is circulating slowly. So far, just 6 vessels have taken their quota.

Mackerel – and horse mackerel
Two foreign vessels have landed their catch in Norway, altogether 2.550 MT of mackerel. The catch was taken north of St. Kilda, grid 43-54. The size was in the range from 383 -390 g. As we understand, the operations are going on far west: Thus, the chance to get landings in Norway, is diminishing.
At the coast, a small catch to be penned-in, was taken in the community of Sveio; 2 MT of mackerel. In addition, some horse mackerel has been caught; 20 MT in Fusa community, and two catches at Møre, each of them; one MT. The size at the coast was 450 - 600 g for the horse mackerel.

Blue whiting
One vessel, “Gardar”, has been at the blue whiting field north of the Porcupine Bank. 1.800 MT were registered. Another vessel, “Endre Dyrøy” is now operating in the same area. The fishing is good, but the weather is very bad.

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