Preliminary advice for TACs and possible catches in Russian Far East in 2012

March 2, 2011 17:19
Vladivostok-based fishery research institute TINRO-Centre has produced a preliminary advice for TACs and possible catches in Russian Far East fisheries basin in 2012, reports

In 2012 fishermen will be able to harvest about 3.564 million tonnes of aquatic biological resources, that is 20,000 tonnes more in comparison with the previous year excluding possible catches of salmon species.

The majority of catches will rely on fish species - 82.4% or 2938 thousand tonnes, shellfish - 1.6% or 58.2 thousand tonnes, mollusks - 8.8% (312.3 thousand tonnes), echinoderms - 0.6% (21.4 thousand tonnes), sea weeds - 6.3% (225.2 thousand tonnes) and mammals - 0.2% (8.8 thousand tonnes). Total TAC for the next year is supposed to be 2,941 thousand tonnes while the possible catch (of objects not subject to TAC) will amount to 623,000 tonnes.

Taking into account the recommended catches by fishing areas, it is worth noting, that expected catches in 5 areas - in Karaginsk subarea (less 4,500 tonnes), in South Kurile (less 30,500 tonnes), in North Sea of Okhotsk (less 55,000 tonnes), in West Kamchatka subarea (less 33,900 tonnes), in Kamchatka - Kurile subarea (less 4,100 tonnes) are to be reduced.


2011 (in 1000 tonnes)

2012 (in 1000 tonnes)

Chukchi Sea



Chukchi subarea



West Bering Sea subarea



Karaginsk subarea



Petropavlovsk-Komandor subarea



North Kurile zone



South Kurile zone



North Sea of Okhotsk subarea



West Kamchatka subarea



East Sakhalin subarea



Kamchatka-Kurile subarea



Primorye subarea



West Sakhalin subarea



Alaska pollock

Total TAC of Alaska pollock for all areas has been increased by 95,500 tonnes. In Karaginsk fishing area the decrease of TACs was contributed by reduction of pollock allowable catch (by 3000 tonnes) due to depleted stocks, while in West Bering sea zone the TAC of Alaska pollock has been increased by 57,000 tonnes that was contributed by the growing abundance and recruitment of three strong year classes.

In North Sea of Okhotsk subarea the TAC of Alaska pollock has been reduced by 21,100 tonnes. The TACs of pollock in West Kamchatka and Kamchatka- Kurile subarea have been also reduced by 21,000 tonnes and 16,000 tonnes correspondingly.

In Primorye subarea, according to TINRO - centre scientists, one strong class of Alaska pollock is coming out of fishing stocks what resulted in reduction of TACs in this subarea to 13,300 tonnes.

In East Sakhalin subarea the allowable catches of Alaska pollock have been increased considerably by 47,000 tonnes. Pollock stocks in East Sakhalin are good enough to take up 97,000 tonnes of pollock.

The growing fishing stocks of Alaska pollock in North and South Kurile areas make it possible to recommend catches of 130,000 tonnes of the species, up 30,600 tonnes from the previous year level. In South Kurile area scientists recommend to increase Alaska pollock TAC by 26,000 tonnes in comparison with the previous year figures. In total, the Alaska pollock TAC in the basin has been increased by 95,500 tonnes.


TAC of saury in South Kurile subarea has been decreased by 25,000 tonnes due to redistribution of saury stocks within the Northern part of Pacific Ocean. In 2010 smaller numbers of saury moved to traditional fishing areas.


In 2010 the considerable increase of catch volumes was expected in Karaginsk subarea and the recommended TAC amounted to 10,000 tonnes. In the current year thanks to satisfactory conditions of herring stocks it is recommended to increase last year quotas by 3000 tonnes. The main driver of the increase of last year TAC was herring from Karaginsk, North Sea of Okhotsk and West Kamchatka subareas, while in 2011 the recommended decrease of herring TAC in both areas by 33,000 and 6,000 tonnes correspondingly seems to be well-grounded.

Other species

In West Kamchatka subareas TACs of Alaska pollock and herring as well as of cod, plaices and black halibut can be observed. The harvest volume recommended to take in this area amounts to 733,700 tonnes in 2012 that is 38,000 tonnes less in comparison with the current year. Allowable catches of plaices, skates and northern shrimp in West Bering zone have been decreased.

The outlook of conditions of resources and possible allowable catches of 12 crab species in 2012 has been revealed. More specifically, TACs have been decreased by 2,600 tonnes in comparison with 2011. Total allowable catch of the species amounts to 42,954 tonnes.

Slight increase of possible catches in 2012 is expected with hairy crab catches in West Bering zone (by 104 tonnes) and Kamchatka-Kurile subarea (by 96 tonnes) and snow crab bairdi catches in Kamchatka-Kurile subarea (by 465 tonnes) and in West Bering zone (by 183 tonnes). Meanwhile TACs of blue king crab in West Kamchatka subarea and West Bering Sea have been decreased by 800 and 68 tonnes correspondingly. Quotas of snow crab opilio in North Sea of Okhotsk area decreased by 4000 tonnes, while in Primorye area quotas of this crab species have been increased by 1890 tonnes. TACs of red snow crab in the Sea of Japan have been decreasing for the second year. Last year allowable catches of this species amounted to almost 6,000 tonnes while at present it is recommended to decrease quotas by 960 tonnes.

TAC of northern shrimp in West Bering Sea zone has been decreased by 1,300 tonnes. TACs of pacific squid in South Kurile area have been decreasing for three years in a row. Next year catch quotas of this species are decreased by 3000 tonnes. TAC of bartram squid decreased by 27,000 tonnes.

Allowable catches of sea scallops in North Kurile zone has been considerably increased in 2012, namely, to 1,170 tonnes. Quotas of sea cucumbers are supposed to be risen by more than 8,000 tonnes of which 6,200 tonnes in Kamchatka Kurile subarea and 2,050 tonnes in East Sakhalin subarea. In Primorye area 3000 tonnes of eelgrass are allowed to catch.

So, according to TINRO-centre scientists, there is a reserve for increase of catch volumes in Russian EEZ. Fishing stocks are in good conditions and not overexploited what gives the fishermen the opportunity to increase catches.

The above provisional advice is however subject to ecological examination and approval.

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