The course of the fisheries as per week 39/2020:

Published: by Camilla Klævold

The mackerel fishery has finally started, in EU waters. The spring-spawning herring has also appeared both from north and west

Considering the fact that we are at the end of September, this week’s mackerel volume was on the modest side and only 1450 MT was registered in the catch journal. Four purse seiners contributed to 950 MT of mackerel, the coastal fleet caught 400 MT and the trawlers caught about 30 MT as bycatch.

The week was affected by strong winds which caused the fleet to be weatherbound at different ports.

The catches caught by the purse seiners were caught south-east of Shetland. At the beginning of the week it was reported of a lot of stomach content in the mackerel from this area, but as the week passed the stomach content shifted for the better and more vessels started fishing.  

The size of the mackerel from this area ranges from 420-470 gram. The mackerel along the coast have been much smaller in size, ranging from 190-350 gram.

Over the weekend a couple of vessels have also searched for mackerel in Norwegian waters, without much luck.  

At the end of the week vessels fishing with troll lines have been in activity outside Sirevåg. The fishery has not been the best so far, with only 40 MT of mackerel landed.

As mentioned above, this is unusually low volumes of mackerel in September, and there’s only been 3300 MT delivered in total. As comparison, a total of 139 000 MT was delivered in September in 2015. In addition, the fishery mainly took place in Norwegian waters five years ago.

For the coming week we’re expecting the mackerel activity to be much higher as more vessels will participate in the fishery.


Spring-Spawning Herring
A total of 1800 MT of spring-spawning herring was caught this week, from five vessels. The Icelandic vessel had the largest catch of 1200 MT east of Iceland. Both Icelandic and Faroe vessels have caught a great volume of herring from this are the past couple of weeks. The size of the herring is relatively large, averaging to 440 gram.

The largest catch from Norwegian waters was caught south-west of Tromsø and weighed in to 375 MT with an average size of 283 g. Another vessel has also caught 250 grams herring in Reinefjorden.

We’re experiencing a large interest from the buyers on herring, and more vessels will participate in the fishery going forward.

North Sea Herring

A total of 1500 MT of North Sea herring was caught this week. Ocean Star caught 1200 MT of this. Costal vessels reported 33 MT from the area around Askvoll. Trawlers have caught around 200 MT of herring as bycatch.

We’re not expecting a lot of activity in this fishery the coming weeks.


Ocean Sprat
A Scottish vessel caught 740 MT of ocean sprat this week from Danish waters.


Costal Sprat
The fishery after costal sprat opened on Wednesday and after positive messages from the scientist multiple vessels were in place in the Hardanger fjord. Unfortunately, the fishery wasn’t the best and only 30 MT has been caught from Hardanger so far. An additional 10 MT was caught in Kvinneherad.


12 vessels have caught a total of 2400 MT of sandeel, 1000 MT of blue whiting, 750 MT of horse mackerel and 350 MT of argentine.

1450 MT of the sandeel was caught in EU waters in the areas around Bressay, the remaining volume was caught in Norwegian waters.

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