The Norwegian pelagic registered 41,900 tonnes of mackerel by the fleet in week 40 of 2023. Photo: Norges Sildesalgslag
“Great catch on the mackerel, and some herring from the north,” reports Kennerth Garvik of Norges Sildesalgslag for week 40 of 2023
We had the best mackerel week of the autumn with a total of 41,900 tonnes in the logbook. The best catch days were Sunday with 10,900 tonnes and Thursday with 10,600 tonnes, while the lowest was Friday with 600 tonnes, due to gales in the mackerel field.
The purse seine group contributed the most with 30,400 tonnes, and from the other groups, coastal fishing had 6,700 tonnes, SUK 3,000 tonnes, and the trawl group 1,100 tonnes. From foreign boats, we have 700 tonnes.
The majority of this week’s mackerel fishing has been in the North Sea in the British zone. From the Norwegian Sea and along the coast for the smallest coastal boats, only modest amounts have been caught, and fishermen report poor mackerel concentrations in these areas.
The average size of mackerel caught from the sea ranges from 333 g at the lowest to 490 g at the highest, with an average of 434 g.
Out of this week’s quantity, over 38,000 tonnes were caught with a purse seine. Buyers and Japanese inspectors who examine the fish upon landing report very good quality mackerel in the past week. There has been little bait, and the fat has settled, resulting in a nice consistency of fish meat.
A glance at the quota situation shows that 178,000 tonnes have now been caught out of the quota of 246,433 tonnes (including last year’s transfer). There is still expected to be significant mackerel fishing activity ahead. However, low-pressure systems coming from the west may hinder fishing at times.
Norwegian Spring Spawning Herring (NVG herring):
From four boats, we have a total of 3,400 tonnes. Catches range from 400 tonnes to 1,050 tonnes.
The herring has been caught in two different areas, with most of it being 15-25 nautical miles north of Torsvåg (the northern tip of Vannøya). Further north in the western part of Tromsøflaket, there has also been fishing.
The herring closest to shore has been more scattered and catches here have been taken with trawl nets. In the northern field, there are reports of more herring, and here, purse seining has been more suitable.
The sizes of the herring range from 295 to 315 grams, with the highest average weight in the northernmost areas. Buyers report that the herring is fatty, with the fat not having properly settled. Normally, this would be optimal for the best fillet use later in the autumn.
Fishing on “Kanten” (the Edge):
From six different boats that have fished on “Kanten” for meal/oil production, we have 1,050 tonnes of Norway pout, just under 600 tonnes of blue whiting, 280 tonnes of horse mackerel, and 120 tonnes of North Sea herring.