The course of fisheries as per week 6/2019

Published: by Jarle A. Hansen

A moderate week for Atlanto Scandic herring, better activity for the blue whiting, but no quota on capelin at Iceland - so far.

Atlanto Scandic herring
A new moderate week for the Atlanto Scandic herring, totaling 22 700 MT registered by midnight Sunday night. At the beginning of the week, some 40 vessels were at the field, on Sunday just ten or a few more spread along the coast of Helgeland from Træna and southwards to Vikna.
The reason behind lower activity is that many vessels now are waiting for the herring to appear at the well-known spawning areas off Møre, which is expected to happen shortly. In addition the herring stays deep and is hard to get at, as we have previously seen this winter. And – some vessels have also finished their quotas. As mentioned, the fleet following the migrating herring is now off Vikna, but still there is herring further north; “Andrea L” was catching as far north as by the Træna depth, southwest of Skomvær, a clear indication on herring to be spread over a huge area.
The size varies from 315 to 365 g with a balanced average at 345 g.

Blue whiting
Ten vessels have been operating west of Ireland catching blue whiting. Eight of them registered catch last week. The week’s total came out with 13 800 MT. All catches were taken in EU waters.
By the beginning of the week, the fleet was operating northwest of the Porcupine Bank. But the results were moderate, and the fleet moved further southwest towards 53⁰ N and 15-16⁰ W. In periods the weather has been harsh. Buyers both from Killybegs, Norway and Iceland have been active.
A reason for not observing more vessels into this fishing yet, is that vessels are still waiting to receive news on possible capelin quotas at Iceland.

Horse mackerel/mackerel
The coastal fleet caught 200 MT of horse mackerel last week. Eight catches have been taken, varying from 5 to 80 MT. Seven catches were taken at the northwest coast of Norway. - One further south.
There was one catch of mackerel last week. A Norwegian vessel operated southwest of St. Kilda and got a catch of 150 MT of mackerel. There has been contact with the vessel during the fishing, but fishing was moderate at the time.

Capelin at Iceland
Whether there will be a capelin quota or not at Iceland this winter, is still not clear. Last week two vessels were surveying, finishing their operations on Friday. For what we know, they did not discover capelin of any “magnitude” to be enough for fishing operations. The vessels are to continue this week, so still there may be hope.


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