The MFRI has issued its final advice for capelin in 2021. Image: MFRI
Fishing vessels operating on capelin off the east coast of Iceland have received another boost as the Icelandic Marine and Freshwater Research Institute has increased their advice on the total allowable catch for 2021.
The MFRI proposes that the capelin catch in the 2020/21 season will be 127,300 tonnes. This advice replaces the one issued on 24 January 2021. The advice is based on the sum of two expeditions that took place in the second half of January and gave an estimate of the size of the spawning stock of capelin totaling 650 thousand tonnes.
The first expedition took place on January 17 – 20 with the participation of three ships in the east of the country. The total stock assessment used the measurements of this expedition which were south of 65 ° N. The second expedition took place on 26 – 30 January with the participation of a total of eight ships and they covered the Westfjords, North and North of Austurmið (photo).
The results of the expedition included in the overall assessment consisted of measurements for the Westfjords, North Iceland and south to 65 ° N east of the country. The first expedition covered only the southern part of the capelin distribution area to the east of the country because storms prevented further measurements in the north. A week later, they finally had a chance to continue.
The distribution of capelin, together with assumptions about walking direction and timing, was the basis for a decision on the addition of the measurements in this way. The total coverage of these two expeditions is considered to cover the entire spawning capelin distribution area. This did not apply to measurements in December and the first half of January, and therefore their results were not used in this final consultation.
Advice on catch quotas is based on the 95% probability that the spawning stock in March will exceed 150,000 tonnes, taking into account predation. Accordingly, this total measurement leads to fishing advice of 127,300 tonnes in the winter of 2020/21 and replaces previous advice from January.