Fishery outlook in the Russian Far East in November 2006

November 13, 2006 16:35

Main fishing species in November 2006 will be herring, halibut, cod, Alaska pollock, saury, squid, crabs and shrimps.

Main species in the current herring season is expected to be Okhotsk herring which will be harvested together with Gizhigino-Kamchatka herring in the North Okhotsk subarea. The fishery situation is expected to be in keeping with last year. Main concentrations of herring will be found on the grounds at 5700-5730 degrees North and 14850-1500 degrees East at the depths of 150-205 meters. Catch rates in November can amount to 12.5 tonnes per shot for Danish seiners, 23 tonnes per two for middle trawlers and 27.2 tonnes per tow for large trawlers. The total harvest can amount to ca.32,000 metric tons subject to the number of fishing efforts meeting scientific recommendations.

In November all types of vessels will be able to operate in the West Kamchatka subarea. Their daily catch rates through the month are expected at 45-75 tonnes for large trawlers, 30-45 tonnes for middle trawlers, 35-40 tonnes per shot for Danish seiners. Fishable concentrations are expected on the grounds at 5830-5930 degrees North and 15600-15730 degrees East. Catches in the above area will be dominated by herring of the length of 25-26 cm and 28-31 cm and weight of 180-250g and 300-340g. In the previous years the strongest concentrations of herring had been observed in the Lebed Mount from late October to December.

In November the fishery situation on the Alaska pollock grounds in the Bering Sea is expected to be stable taking into account the stock’s fairly abundant summer migration to the area. However, due to the start of return migration of feeding APO from the Navarin shelf southwards the catch rates are expected to be lower than in October. The average daily rates are forecasted at 50-60 tonnes for large trawlers and 20-30 tonnes for middle trawlers. Nevertheless, results of the fleet’s operations will depend on the number of fishing vessels and the weather conditions in the area.

Despite satisfactory condition of the Pacific halibut fishing stock in the West Bering Sea Zone, in November 2006 the fishermen are not recommended to conduct its trawl fishery due to a considerable bycatch of immature fish. Longline fishery on the grounds will be complicated by November storms, therefore the scientists expect only a small bycatch of halibut within 80-100 tonnes from longline operations. At the same time, longline fishery should preferably be discontinued on the black halibut grounds in the waters of West Kamchatka. The strongest concentrations of halibut in the area are observed in November which is the stock’s spawning time, though due to its slower feeding while spawning longline fishery will be less efficient. At the same time, in the North Okhotsk subarea in November the scientists recommend catches of black halibut at 150-300 tonnes for both trawl and longline operations on a vast area. The share of black halibut in longline catches may amount to ca.80%. The average daily harvest of trawlers is not expected to exceed 1.5 tonnes per ship.

In November on the grounds of East Kamchatka the cod stock will keep moving lower to the depths of more than 100 meters. Stronger concentrations of the species will be formed in the area in between the south end of the Karaginsky Island and the Ozernyi Cape and further to the south, as well as in the Avachinsky Bay. The average daily catches are expected at 6-8 tonnes from dedicated longline operations and 2-4 tonnes for trawlers. In the subareas of West Kamchatka strong concentrations of cod are formed at the depths of 150-300 meters from the Okhotsk coast of the Paramushir Island to the 5630th degree North. Catches are forecasted at 5-6 tonnes for longliners and 3.5 tonnes for trawlers on the average.

The conditions for saury fishery in November are expected to be fairly good on the grounds along the border of the Russian EEZ. The fleet’s daily catches are forecasted at 20-30 tonnes per ship and 2.5-3.0 tonnes per trap. At the same time, the fishable concentrations will start moving to the south and southwest thus leaving the Russian EEZ. The fleet’s production output will mostly depend on the weather conditions in the areas.

In the recent years in November two areas for B. Magister squid fishery (Paramushir-Onekotan and Ketoy-Simushir) had sustained fairly good catches. The below table shows daily catches of squid in November 2001-2005:

2001

2002

2003

2004

2005

Daily catches of squid per large ship, metric tons

7.7

9.3

7.3

19.7

22.1

Daily catches of squid per tow, metric tons

2.4

3.4

2.7

7.0

9.0

According to the scientific forecasts, the fishery situation in November is expected to be satisfactory in general. However, the bycatch of bottomfish species will reach 35-45% on the grounds of the Ketoy-Simushir Islands and 50-60% and even more at the northern islands of Paramushir-Onekotan.

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