The Vizconde de Eza oceanographic vessel begins the Porcupine 2021 campaign to assess fisheries resources on the west coast of Ireland

The Spanish oceanographic vessel Vizconde de Eza begins the Porcupine 2021 campaign to assess fisheries resources on the west coast of Ireland

The oceanographic vessel Vizconde de Eza, from the General Secretariat for Fisheries, has departed from the port of Vigo heading for waters off the west coast of Ireland, where it will carry out the Porcupine 2021 campaign, which aims to assess the demersal resources of this area, which It is a fishery of great importance for the Spanish fishing fleet.


The return of the Vizconde de Eza to Vigo is scheduled for 07 October.

The campaign, also called “SP-PORC-Q3”, will last for 36 days during which a team of 15 scientists will carry out studies with the aim of obtaining abundance indices of the benthic and demersal fauna of the Porcupine bank, with special attention to commercial species of interest to the Spanish fleet, such as hake, monkfish, roosters and Norway lobster.

The Spanish Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food said, “These campaigns are one of the main methods of direct study of exploited fishing populations, which derive from the need to obtain independent data on fishing activity for the correct management of the target populations of the fishing grounds.

“For the evaluation of fishery resources, data of stratified indices of abundance of the main commercial species are obtained, the distribution patterns of demersal and benthic species are described, the patterns of spatial distribution and sizes, the strength of recruitment, are studied. the location of the juveniles and the growth and reproduction data of the main species are obtained. In addition, acoustic surveys will be carried out to characterize the bottoms and hydrographic stations to obtain data on the water column.”

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Porcupine 2021 is the twenty-first campaign carried out in the area, born by proposal of Spain due of the entry into service of the oceanographic vessel Vizconde de Eza, In response to the communication of the “International Bottom Trawl Survey Working Group” of lack of data in the area. The continuation of this type of research is essential in the field of the European Union in terms of fisheries and environmental management. With its development, the commitments acquired in the framework of the European “Data Collection Framework” and the National Basic Data Program are fulfilled.

The Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food says that it maintains its commitment to better knowledge of the sea and its resources to guarantee their protection and sustainable management. For this reason, through the General Secretariat for Fisheries, it continues to invest efforts in developing research campaigns on board its oceanographic vessels, which will undoubtedly lead to an improvement in knowledge and therefore to a sustainable management of our resources. seas.

The collaboration with the Spanish Institute of Oceanography facilitates the access and use of the vessels of the General Secretariat of Fisheries to the research staff, making the best equipment available to the scientists for the purposes of the campaign, and the optimization of the available resources

Research vessels of the fleet of the General Secretariat of Fisheries

The fleet of oceanographic vessels of the General Secretariat for Fisheries is a firm commitment of the Government of Spain, through the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, with the sustainable management of fisheries resources. The vessels Emma Bardán, Miguel Oliver and Vizconde de Eza carry out more than 500 research days each year in both national and international campaigns, embarking teams of scientists who evaluate the state of the fisheries with the objective of maximum sustainable yield.

The Viscount of Eza, chosen to carry out this campaign, is one of the most sophisticated fisheries and oceanographic research vessels in the world. Measuring 53 meters long and 13 meters wide, its dynamic positioning system allows it to stay in the same point without changing its position, compensating for adverse conditions of waves, currents or wind.

The ship is a large floating research centre, as it has specialized laboratories (biology, physics, acoustics, wet and computer science) equipped with advanced scientific instrumentation. Its hull, reinforced in the bow, allows it to work between floating ice. In addition, it can perform fundus surveys up to 5,000 meters deep.

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