3.9.4 Anthropogenic impact: Fishing activity

Fishing activity. Photo: Stein Tronstad, Norwegian Polar Institute

Fisheries and other harvesting 2018
Typography
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Fishing activity in the Barents Sea is tracked by the Vessel Monitoring System (VMS). Figure 3.9.4.1 show fishing activity in 2017 based on Russian and Norwegian data. VMS data offer valuable information about temporal and spatial changes in fishing activity. Figure 3.9.4.2 show the use of gear in 2017 and annual fishing intensity reported to the Norwegian fishery authorities in 2011-2017. The most widespread gear used in the Barents Sea is bottom trawl; but long lines, gillnets, Danish seines, and handlines are also used in demersal fisheries. Pelagic fisheries use purse seines and pelagic trawls. The shrimp fishery used special bottom trawls.

The fishing intensity west of Svalbard in the central to northern part of the Barents Sea has increased in the period from 2011 to 2017. Updates for 2018 is not available at the time of the WGIBAR meeting.

Figure 3.9.4.1. Location of Russian and foreign fishing activity from commercial fleets and fishing vessels used for research purposes in 2017 as reported (VMS) to Russian authorities. These are VMS data linked with logbook data (source: PINRO Fishery statistics database).Figure 3.9.4.1. Location of Russian and foreign fishing activity from commercial fleets and fishing vessels used for research purposes in 2017 as reported (VMS) to Russian authorities. These are VMS data linked with logbook data (source: PINRO Fishery statistics database).

Figure 3.9.4.2 a) Type of gear used in 2017 and b) Location and intensity of Norwegian and foreign fishing activity from commercial fleets (larger than 15m) and fishing vessels used for research purposes in 2011; 2012; 2013; 2014; ; 2015; 2016; 2017 as reported (VMS) to Norwegian authorities. This is VMS data linked with logbook data. (source: Norwegian Directorate of Fisheries).Figure 3.9.4.2 a) Type of gear used in 2017 and b) Location and intensity of Norwegian and foreign fishing activity from commercial fleets (larger than 15m) and fishing vessels used for research purposes in 2011; 2012; 2013; 2014; ; 2015; 2016; 2017 as reported (VMS) to Norwegian authorities. This is VMS data linked with logbook data. (source: Norwegian Directorate of Fisheries).

From 2011 onwards, minimum mesh size for bottom trawl fisheries for cod and haddock is 130 mm for the entire Barents Sea; previously the minimum mesh size was 135 mm in the Norwegian EEZ and 125 mm in the Russian EEZ. It is still mandatory to use sorting grids. Minimum legal catch size was harmonized at the same time: for cod from 47 cm (Norway) and 42 cm (Russia) to 44 cm for all, and for haddock from 44 cm (Norway) and 39 cm (Russia) to 40 cm for all.

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