HB Grandi: Mackerel season starts better than last year
Víkingur is expected in Vopnafjörður today with around 790 tonnes of mackerel on board. This is their second trip, and Venus has also landed twice in Vopnafjörður, so there is full mackerel production at HB Grandi’s pelagic factory.
‘The season has got off to a better start than it did last year,’ said Víkingur’s skipper Hjalti Einarsson, adding that the opening of the season presents its own problems.
‘The temperature gradients are some way further west than they were last year and we have mainly been fishing south of the Westman Islands. The sea temperature is 11 to 12°C and catches have been very variable. There are good hauls, next to nothing in between. We would have preferred to have found mackerel in catchable amounts further east, but there hasn’t been the time to search properly. It could be that what makes the difference is that this summer is much brighter and warmer than last year,’ he said.
As in previous years, mackerel migrate along the western and eastern coasts. There has been hardly any mackerel seen in the south-western harbours and no reports of pelagic vessels catching mackerel off the west. As usual, the mackerel find their way onto herring grounds, but Hjalti Einarsson said that in this trip have fortunately been able to avoid getting herring as a by-catch with the mackerel.