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Thread: Days at sea / CFP / Quota talks

  1. #381
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    North Sea cod can be eaten with 'clear conscience'

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-40642230



    North Sea cod is now sustainable and can be eaten with a "clear conscience", a fisheries body has said.

    The fish has been considered under threat for more than a decade after stocks fell to 36,000 tonnes in 2006.

    But the industry has agreed measures to help regenerate the population, including new nets and closing spawning areas to fishing.

    The Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) said it could now be sold with its "blue tick" label.

    The label indicates that North Sea cod caught by Scottish and English boats is "sustainable and fully traceable".

    Cod stocks in the North Sea reached 270,000 tonnes in the 1970s. After the 2006 low, the fishing industry began work with the Scottish government and the EU Fisheries Council to agree a recovery plan.

    The MSC said the announcement that cod was now sustainable was a "momentous achievement" for the industry and was the result of work of a coalition of fishing organisations, supermarkets, seafood brands and the industry body Seafish.

    However, conservation body WWF has warned that historically, the population of North Sea cod remains at a low level.

    The stocks have to be independently assessed before they can be given the MSC blue tick.

    Cod is one of the UK's most popular fish, with almost 70,000 tonnes eaten each year, but the MSC said a recent YouGov survey showed there was confusion about whether it was sustainable or not.

    Toby Middleton, MSC programme director for the north-east Atlantic said: "Today's certification marks the end of the cod confusion.

    "If you can see the MSC label on your cod, you know that it has come from a sustainable source. By choosing fish with that label, you will be helping to protect stocks long into the future."

    He added: "Thanks to a collaborative, cross-industry effort, one of our most iconic fish has been brought back from the brink.

    "Modified fishing gear, catch controls, well-managed fishing practices - all these steps have come together to revive a species that was in severe decline."

    As part of the plan to regenerate stocks, boats were allocated a certain number of days fishing which were linked to the conservation measures they signed up to.

    The fishing industry is also able to close fishing areas at short notice to protect local populations and has developed a system of remote monitoring using CCTV cameras on board boats.

    Mike Park, chairman of the Scottish Fisheries Sustainable Accreditation Group said: "This is a massive development for the catching sector and is a testament to the power of collective action.

    "The years of commitment to rebuilding North Sea cod has shown that fishermen are responsible and can be trusted to deliver stable and sustainable stocks. The consumer can now eat home-caught cod with a clear conscience."
    Post-Brexit policy

    However, the WWF has warned that the population levels of North Sea cod remained low compared with 50 years ago.

    Lyndsey Dodds, head of UK marine policy at WWF said: "The recovery of cod in the North Sea reflects what's possible if fishermen work together with fisheries managers, scientists and the wider industry to recover fish stocks.

    "However, the amount of North Sea cod at breeding age is well below late 1960s levels and recovery remains fragile.

    "If we're to get North Sea cod back on British plates for good, it's vital that we don't lose focus on sustainably managing fish stocks and ensuring the protection of the marine wildlife and habitats as the UK develops its post-Brexit fisheries policy.

    "Embracing new technology and installing cameras on the UK fleet would be a highly cost-effective and efficient way to help manage and monitor cod catches, as well as the range of other fish also caught by these boats."

  2. #382
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    North Sea cod can be eaten with 'clear conscience'

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-40642230



    North Sea cod is now sustainable and can be eaten with a "clear conscience", a fisheries body has said.

    The fish has been considered under threat for more than a decade after stocks fell to 36,000 tonnes in 2006.

    But the industry has agreed measures to help regenerate the population, including new nets and closing spawning areas to fishing.

    The Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) said it could now be sold with its "blue tick" label.

    The label indicates that North Sea cod caught by Scottish and English boats is "sustainable and fully traceable".

    Cod stocks in the North Sea reached 270,000 tonnes in the 1970s. After the 2006 low, the fishing industry began work with the Scottish government and the EU Fisheries Council to agree a recovery plan.

    The MSC said the announcement that cod was now sustainable was a "momentous achievement" for the industry and was the result of work of a coalition of fishing organisations, supermarkets, seafood brands and the industry body Seafish.

    However, conservation body WWF has warned that historically, the population of North Sea cod remains at a low level.

    The stocks have to be independently assessed before they can be given the MSC blue tick.

    Cod is one of the UK's most popular fish, with almost 70,000 tonnes eaten each year, but the MSC said a recent YouGov survey showed there was confusion about whether it was sustainable or not.

    Toby Middleton, MSC programme director for the north-east Atlantic said: "Today's certification marks the end of the cod confusion.

    "If you can see the MSC label on your cod, you know that it has come from a sustainable source. By choosing fish with that label, you will be helping to protect stocks long into the future."

    He added: "Thanks to a collaborative, cross-industry effort, one of our most iconic fish has been brought back from the brink.

    "Modified fishing gear, catch controls, well-managed fishing practices - all these steps have come together to revive a species that was in severe decline."

    As part of the plan to regenerate stocks, boats were allocated a certain number of days fishing which were linked to the conservation measures they signed up to.

    The fishing industry is also able to close fishing areas at short notice to protect local populations and has developed a system of remote monitoring using CCTV cameras on board boats.

    Mike Park, chairman of the Scottish Fisheries Sustainable Accreditation Group said: "This is a massive development for the catching sector and is a testament to the power of collective action.

    "The years of commitment to rebuilding North Sea cod has shown that fishermen are responsible and can be trusted to deliver stable and sustainable stocks. The consumer can now eat home-caught cod with a clear conscience."
    Post-Brexit policy

    However, the WWF has warned that the population levels of North Sea cod remained low compared with 50 years ago.

    Lyndsey Dodds, head of UK marine policy at WWF said: "The recovery of cod in the North Sea reflects what's possible if fishermen work together with fisheries managers, scientists and the wider industry to recover fish stocks.

    "However, the amount of North Sea cod at breeding age is well below late 1960s levels and recovery remains fragile.

    "If we're to get North Sea cod back on British plates for good, it's vital that we don't lose focus on sustainably managing fish stocks and ensuring the protection of the marine wildlife and habitats as the UK develops its post-Brexit fisheries policy.

    "Embracing new technology and installing cameras on the UK fleet would be a highly cost-effective and efficient way to help manage and monitor cod catches, as well as the range of other fish also caught by these boats."

  3. #383
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    Bolder management vital for spurdog recovery

    http://fiskerforum.dk/en/news/b/bold...urdog-recovery

    The latest scientific advice on spurdog points to the reintroduction of a by-catch allowance as the most sensible management strategy to recover the stock, according to the NFFO, which states that this would prevent the needless discarding of dead catch, remove an incentive to retain smoothhound as substitution, and restore the evidence base generated by the fishing fleet that underpins management decision-making.

    The ICES advice was discussed by the NFFO East Anglia Committee at its latest meeting in Norwich on 17th July.

    Despite a general upturn in North Sea stocks, the inshore finfish fleet in East Anglia is facing unprecedented pressures on the five stocks; cod, sole, bass, thornback ray and blonde ray that the fleet has customarily depended on.

    Cod has failed to show up on the local grounds for the last two years. EU bass measures are biting hard. Industry recently fought off a further tightening of measures by Eastern IFCA that had proposed an extension of the closed season for liners, but the proposal was subsequently withdrawn when the impact to the fleet was made clear. Successive cuts to skates and rays under group TAC management have also constrained landings despite rapidly increasing abundance of thornback ray in the area.

    ‘While not explicitly targeted, spurdog is inevitably an unavoidable part of the mixed fishery for the East Anglian liners,’ East Anglia Committee Chairman Steve Wightman said.

    ‘It makes no sense to be discarding dead by-catch and the fleet could be generating data that would help to improve the detail and reliability of the assessment.’

    The latest ICES advice highlights that current estimated discard levels of around 2500 tonnes, if translated into a landed by-catch, would be consistent with the recovery of the stock similar to assuming a zero catch. The advice shows that after a long period of decline in biomass, the spurdog population has been recovering for over a decade, but would take another three decades to fully recover to MSY Btrigger due to the biology of the species.

    A zero TAC for the stock was introduced in 2011, and this year, in order to prevent the stock inevitably becoming an ultimate choke under the Landing Obligation, it was moved to the prohibited species list.

    The NFFO states that both measures have had the effect of removing catch information from the scientific process. On a more positive note, a UK derogation was introduced last year to allow for a limited trial of spurdog avoidance measures by the South West trawl fleet, the culmination of earlier efforts by the Federation and the Cornish FPO to make inroads into the issue.

    ‘Let’s do what we can to keep fishing mortality at a minimum as the stock continues to recover, but let’s not forget there are other objectives in fisheries management too - minimising discards, getting away from data poor fisheries and maintaining viable fishing livelihoods,’ Steve Wightman said. ‘If we follow the latest ICES advice there is an opportunity to progress beyond the initial trials in the South West to get a more sensible management strategy in place for the stock as a whole.’

    ICES advice on spurdog can be found here. http://www.ices.dk/sites/pub/Publica...dgs-nea.pdf%20

    Source: NFFO

  4. #384
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    Work Under Way on December Council Priorities

    http://nffo.org.uk/news/work-under-w...riorities.html

  5. #385
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    Push for fishers to land catch in Scotland

    https://www.pressandjournal.co.uk/fp...h-in-scotland/

    This could force the Spanish off the register I guess although this is an attempt to prevent ANY Scottish boat being transferred to England/Wales/Northern Ireland if they land more times there than in Scotland ( SNP demanding any non-Scots boat that lands more than 50% of their catches into Scotland be transferred without appeal onto the Scottish register along with registration/licence & Quota

  6. #386
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    Fishermen threaten SNP ministers with legal action over plan to force them to land more catch in Scotland

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017...an-force-land/

  7. #387
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    No way Nicola! Sturgeon faces angry revolt from Scottish fisherman over new quotas

    http://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/849...onomy-Minister

  8. #388
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    Mackerel mayhem

    http://fiskerforum.dk/en/news/b/mackerel-mayhem

    Norwegian vessel operators’ federation Fiskebåt has levelled some sharp criticism at the ICES decision to recommend a 35% cut the mackerel fishery, reducing it to 560,000 tonnes.

    According to Fiskebåt director Audun Maråk, the ICES rationale is based on egg surveys and overshooting quotas in recent years, while the research organisation also says that recruitment has been questionable and that the stock may have moved northwards.

    ‘The stock has continued to grow despite the recommended quotas having been exceeded in recent years,’ Audun Maråk said, commenting that this has been remarked upon by both ICES and the Norwegian Institute of Marine Research.

    ‘I would like to remind you what the researchers from the Institute of Marine Research said at the annual meeting of Fiskebåt Sør last December; "What we see is that recruitment of mackerel has been very good. When the stock increases, it needs more food and increases its range." This has also been the view of the fishermen,’ he said, adding that ICES assumes that the stock has not increased, but only moved to new areas.

    ‘For those who are concerned with the recommendations and advisory framework, it becomes very difficult when the advice is contradictory. Fiskebåt will go through the quota recommendations thoroughly and make its final assessments,’ he said.

    Audun Maråk also stated that in the quota agreement between the EU, the Faroe Islands and Norway, a stability rule of plus/minus 20% of the agreed TAC (total quota) is accepted as long as the spawning stock is over three million tonnes.

    ICES has recommended a 546,472 tonne quota for Atlanto-Scandian herring, a 15% cut over the 2017 figure, and a 1,387,872 tonne quota for blue whiting, an increase of 3%.

    ‘The quotas for these stocks were as expected,’ Audun Maråk said.

    Source: Fiskebåt

  9. #389
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  10. #390
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    The risk of under-fishing, N-E Atlantic over-fishing has ended

    http://fiskerforum.dk/en/news/b/the-...hing-has-ended

    A group of international scientists is currently looking into whether the fisheries in Northern European waters are now seriously under-fished. Dr Henrik Sparholt, who for many years held a senior position within ICES, recently presented an outline of a research project to understand this development with more precision, to a meeting of the Executive Committee of the North Sea Advisory Council.

    A growing understanding of how ecosystems work and the gradual integration of this new knowledge into management advice lies behind this new approach. None of this was particularly relevant when our stocks were overfished but the situation has radically changed in the last decade.

    According to Dr Sparholt, ICES science confirms that overfishing has ended in the N-E Atlantic fisheries, major fish stocks have been rebuilt and that exploitation is considered to be around one-third of what it was 5-8 years ago.

    In his presentation he set out that under these circumstances, multi-species and ecosystem interactions – essentially who eats who in the marine ecosystem - becomes much more important and it is therefore correspondingly important that this shift is taken into account when setting harvest rates. Current single species assessment models are unrealistic because they do not take into account predation effects. The project’s aim is to bring more realism into the science and into the management advice – it is then up to fisheries managers what they do with that advice.

    He explained that a shift to an ecosystem Fmsy is already underway with these type of considerations already being taken into account in the massive and successfully managed Barents Sea and Icelandic cod fisheries. In the former, interactions between cod, capelin and herring are already taken into account, and in the latter, interactions between cod, shrimp and capelin are factored in. Ecosystem considerations are not yet taken into account in EU fisheries management decisions when setting TACs.

    Increasing fishing mortality on cod to 50% above single species Fmsy, in order to limit predation on herring or reduce the scope for cannibalism, which can be quite prevalent with cod, is the type of management action that might follow integration of ecosystem factors into management advice.

    Dr Sparholt highlighted the costs of under-fishing but also pointed to the drawbacks of harvesting on the basis of ecosystem Fmsy – more year-on-year variability. As major predators, cod and hake are likely to be two stocks that would see the biggest change in such a shift, with mackerel, herring and plaice seeing much less change.

    ‘We have known for some time that species interactions are important and that these are not yet being taken into account in most management decisions in our fisheries,’ said NFFO Chief Executive Barrie Deas.

    ‘When fishing pressure was too high, this did not matter so much but this project suggests that consideration of how to use the new knowledge is now becoming a matter of urgency. It is vital to avoid overfishing but equally there is an ethical imperative not to waste fish that could be generating income and feeding people.’

    ‘Scientists and the fishing industry have already begun to consider the implications of rebuilding of the cod stocks in our waters for the populations of high-value crab, lobster and nephrops (prawn) fisheries, which in general have been doing very well during the period when demersal stocks were depleted. The shift from single stock to multi-species /ecosystem, scientific advice is unlikely to be like flicking a switch.’

    ‘It is more likely to involve a progressive inclusion of ecosystem factors into management decisions. For example, the level cannibalism in cod is likely to depend on the extent to which adults and young fish occupy the same marine space. Following the best available scientific advice is hard-wired into our fisheries legislation and our political decision-making processes. It looks like in the future we will have to be as concerned as much with controlling under-fishing as we have in the past been about dealing with over-fishing.’

    Source: NFFO

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