The course of fishery as per week 35/2017

Published: by Jarle A. Hansen

Increasing volume of North Sea herring, - positive for horse mackerel catching, and mackerel just along the coast. 

North Sea Herring
Last week we got the best week for North Sea herring since the main season in June; totaling 7.800 MT. Six vessels from Scotland and Shetland have contributed with a total of 5.700 MT. Norwegian vessels have reported 1.800 MT for consumption purposes and 300 MT for meal&oil.
The foreign catches have been taken northeast of the Orkneys, and the herring here has been good sized with an average from 225 -250 g.
Norwegian vessels have been operating in two areas. In the EU zone at the well-known Turbot Bank, east of Peterhead. - The herring had an average above 200 g. The other field was in Skagerrak where the vessels are subject to regulations for setting sail. The herring here was smaller with an average below 100 g.
The herring taken in the EU zone has a high content of roe and milt, and several buyers are producing roe in addition to filets.
In the forthcoming week, we expect more landings from foreign vessels. In Skagerrak, there is quota left for just one purse seiner.

Mackerel
The main season is not yet there, and the activity for mackerel last week was in areas close to shore with penning-in in Rogaland and Hordaland counties, and trailing from the Møre area and southwards.
As a total, 440 MT have been penned-in, - by trailing; 300 MT. The weather by early week proved strong southwest winds, hampering the trailing.
“Slåtterøy” was on a mission for mackerel intended for bate in to the Norwegian Sea. A lot of mackerel was then observed, but no mackerel was found with the right stomach content. Accordingly, the catching was terminated.
From Iceland and the Faroe isles it is reported good catches in respective zones.
The activity is expected to increase in the week to come, and several vessels will prepare for high sea catching.

Horse mackerel
During the summer months, the share of horse mackerel in trawl catches along the “edge” has been increasing, - in some hauls the horse mackerel has been the main species. By sorting out species both automatically and by manual operations, horse mackerel has been packed for consumption purposes.
Last week following a total of 2.050 MT, 860 MT were assigned consumption purposes. This is both good for fishermen and buyers, and enable them to serve a market looking for this species, – mainly Africa.
Hopefully a high share of horse mackerel this summer, may indicate a good season for horse mackerel later this year.

High sea sprat
“Knester” reported 550 MT of sprat on Saturday, sprat from the southern part of the North Sea. The sprat was taken by trawl and sold for meal&oil purposes. - Four vessels more are now heading for joining this catching.

Fishing for indirect consumption
In addition to volumes of high sea sprat and horse mackerel mentioned above, there has been caught 1.400 MT of Norway pout, 1.100 MT of blue whiting, and 230 MT of silver smelt. All catches, except two catches of Norway pout in the EU zone, were taken along the edge west of Bergen and southwards.

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