Overview of fisheries in the Russian Far East as per 10 May 2009

May 15, 2009 16:12

In the first half of May 2009 the catch rates in the Russian Far East Basin did not exceed 3000 tonnes per day, reports www.fishnet-russia.com (https://www.fishnet.ru/) with reference to NCMC and fishery sources in Vladivostok.

Although the dedicated pollock fishery in the Sea of Okhotsk (season A) got finished, the species continued to dominate in daily catches. Large vessels, 6-8 in number, continued harvesting pollock in the East Sakhalin subarea with the catch rates reported from 34 to 60 tonnes per tow. Less efficient pollock fishery was conducted in the waters of the North Kuriles where four large trawlers and one middle trawler were operating. Their catches per tow in the course of the week did not exceed 40 tonnes. The dedicated pollock fishery was also conducted by 4 large vessels at the shores of East Kamchatka. In the first ten days of May 2009 their harvest amounted to 3800 tonnes. As bycatch the fleets were targeting pollock on mixed grounds of bottomfish for human consumption. In the week under analysis pollock accounted for 60% of the total harvest.

Weekly harvest of main commercial species broken to main fishing areas on 5-12 May 2009

Fishing species

East Kamchatka zoneSea of OkhotskNorth and South KurilesTotal
Catch, metric tons%%Catch, metric tons%%Catch, metric tons%%Catch, metric tons
Herring  20.0  2
Wachna cod  95011.23.520.1954
Atka mackerel3136.230.0817.812.31133
Ocean perch50.110.024.560.430
Grenadier    382.15.8382
Smelt  600.7  60
Blue king crab  1461.7  146
Golden king crab  861.014.90.2101
Snow crab bairdi  260.3  26
Snow crab opilio  7428.8  742
Tringle tanner crab  230.3  23
Deepwater shrimp  1481.8  148
Whelks  1631.9  163
Sea cucumber  1321.6  132
Sea urchin    2323.5232
Squid    6459.7645
Source: NCMC.

The longline fishery of cod and halibuts continued in the Sea of Okhotsk and at the eastern shores of Kamchatka. In the West Kamchatka subarea longline operations were conducted by 20 ships daily handling 400-490 km of longlines. Their total harvest through the first ten days of May amounted to a little more than 500 tonnes, of which one fourth was contributed by halibuts. In the Karaginsk subarea at the eastern shores of Kamchatka the longline fishery was conducted by the fleet twice smaller in number. Their catches were dominated by cod and the daily harvest fluctuated from 35 to 55 metric tons.

MRS small seiners went to the Karaginsk subarea to harvest bottomfish with trawl and Danish seine gear. Thanks to the newcomers the fleet already operating on the grounds grew practically two times. The main fishing species was flounder contributing up to 80% to the harvest and half of it was made up by cod. By 20 ships grew the fleet operating at the west coast of Kamchatka on mixed grounds of food bottomfish where the catches were dominated by wachna cod the weekly harvest of which reached 950 tonnes. Besides, the fishermen harvested ca.900 tonnes of flounder.

In all the subareas of the Sea of Okhotsk the Russian fleets showed fairly good results for crab fishery, the fishing efforts remaining on a par with the previous week. More specifically, in the waters of East Sakhalin one ship was targeting triangle tanner crab, the harvest of which amounted to 23 tonnes as per 12 May 2009. In the North Okhotsk subarea two crabbers were targeting golden king crab and more than 30 ships were hunting for snow crab opilio, the harvest of which in the first ten days of May exceeded 120 tonnes and 1100 tonnes correspondingly. Golden king crab was also harvested in the West Kamchatka subarea where the crab harvest amounted to 53 tonnes for three crabbers. In the same subarea a group of 17 crabbers was covering blue king crab quotas. Since the beginning of the month the harvest of the species amounted to 250 tonnes. By the end of the week one crabber continued operating on the south of the peninsula in the Kamchatka Kurile subarea on the grounds of snow crab bairdi. The catch of snow crab bairdi in the area exceeded 1170 tonnes since the fishery got started. The total harvest of all crab species in the Sea of Okhotsk through the week under analysis amounted to 1040 tonnes.

Two more ships joined the fleet targeting whelks in the North Okhotsk subarea. The fleet's harvest of whelks through the week amounted to 20-25 tonnes contributing the total harvest of 260 tonnes since the fishery's start.

As the fishing efforts in the Kamchatka Kurile subarea got smaller, the daily catch rates for deepwater shrimp somewhat improved to 2.2 tonnes per ship. The fishery results in the North Okhotsk subarea remained at 2.7 tonnes per ship daily on the average.

In the waters of the North Kuriles by the end of the week two large trawlers kept operating on the grenadier grounds. Through the week they harvested more than 380 tonnes of the species and through the first ten days of May 2009 the fleet caught 800 tonnes of grenadier. The total harvest since the beginning of the year exceeded 2500 tonnes. The group of large trawlers grew by 3 ships which were engaged in Atka mackerel and squid fisheries. Vladivostok-based vessels owned by Nakhodka BAMR (5 ships), Dalmoreproduct (3 ships) and ZAO Roliz (1 ship) were hunting for squid. In the first days of May 2009 the group harvested 1280 tonnes of squid. The other ships were targeting Atka mackerel the harvest of which approximated 2500 tonnes through the first ten days of May 2009.

The largest harvest through the week under analysis was observed in the North Kuriles, namely more than 5300 tonnes or 26.6% of the total catch for main fishing areas. Less efficient grounds were located in the North Okhotsk subarea, namely 1180 tonnes or 5.9%. Petropavlovsk Komandor subarea and East Sakhalin subarea correspondingly contributed 3800 tonnes (18.8%) and 4000 tonnes (19.9%). Approximately the same catch volumes were recorded in the Karaginsk subarea and in the South Kuriles, namely 1260 and 1270 tonnes. In the Kamchatka-Kurile subarea thanks to newcomers on the mixed grounds of food bottomfish (flounder, wachna cod and pollock) the harvest exceeded by 460 tonnes the catch volumes to the north of the 54th degree North in the West Kamchatka subarea where the longliners were more efficient.

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