The  Greenland  halibut  fishery  in  NAFO  Subarea  0  from  1996   to  2011  

Anna  Olafsdo+r   George  Rose  
Centre  for  Fisheries   Ecosystem  Research,   Memorial  University     Prepared  for:     ArcAc  Fishery  Alliance   Oceans  North  Canada    


Greenland  halibut  most  valuable  Canadian  ground  fish   species  in  NW  AtlanAc    


Outline  –  Total  Allowable  Catch  (TAC)  has  double  in  the  last   decade  despite  minimal  biological  knowledge  on  stock    
Background:     •     biology  of  Greenland  halibut   •     the  fishery  in  Subarea  0     Analysis:     •   catch  length  frequency  data   •   fish  size  by  gear  type   •   yield-­‐per-­‐length   •   number  of  individual  fish  for  a  ton  caught     RecommendaAons:   •   more  reserach  needed   •   “slot-­‐length”  approach  to  harvesAng  should  be   considered,  reducing  fishing  of  length  <45cm  and  >80cm   •   Small  Fish  Protocol  (<45cm)  enforced  

Limited  knowledge  on  biology  of  Greenland  halibut  in  0A   and    0B   Age   Growth  rate   Size  at  maturity   Spawning  stock  biomass   Fishing  mortality  

Background:  biology  

? X  

Yield-­‐per-­‐recruit   Biological  reference  points   Fishing  sustainability   Risk  assessment  on  current  TAC  

TAC  and  catch  in  Subarea  0  doubled  between  2000  and  2011    

Background:  fishery  

Available  catch  length  frequency  data  from  the  fishery  

Analysis:  at-­‐sea  observer  data  

In  0A  –  trawl:  length  of  fish  has  declined  since  2006      

Analysis:  length  frequency  

In  0B  –  trawl:  length  of  fish  has  increased  since  2006      

Analysis:  length  frequency  

Gillnets:  limited  changes  in  fish  length  since  fishery  began  

Analysis:  length  frequency  

Trawls  ocen  violate  Small  Fish  Protocol  (max  15%  <  45cm)    



Analysis:  Small  Fish  Protocol  

Gillnets  catch  larger  fish  than  do  trawls  

Analysis:  fish  length  

Sustainable  fishery  is   balancing  birth  and  death  
reproducAon   growth  

stock  biomass  
fishing   mortality   natural   mortality  

Yield  can  be  esAmated  
Yield-­‐per-­‐length  models:  

1)  calculate  yield  per  individual   assuming    specific  fishing   mortality  

2)  esAmate  at  what  length   fishing  should  start  for   maximum  yield  

fisheries  science  

Gillnets  uAlize  fish  growth  potenAal  befer  by  catching   larger  fish    
F  =  fishing  mortality   Z  =  total  mortality  

Analysis:  yield-­‐per-­‐length  

Fishing  mortality  affects  yield-­‐per-­‐length  

F  =  fishing  mortality   Z  =  total  mortality  

Analysis:  yield-­‐per-­‐length  

Trawls  catch  twice  as  many  number  of  fish  for  a  ton  caught   than  do  gillnets  

Analysis:  number  per  ton  

Annually  trawls  catch  3-­‐4  million  fish  and  gillnets  1-­‐1.5   million  in  Division  0A    

Analysis:  number  per  ton  

Summary:  apply  precauAonary  approach  unAl  more   biological  informaAon  on  stock  are  available           Conclusions:

1)  Research  needed  to  establish  sustainability  of  fishery  and   biological  reference  points   2)  Small  versus  large  fish?    Immature  versus  mature  fish?  

1)  more  research   2)  consider  “slot-­‐length”  approach  to  harvesAng,  reducing   fishing  of  lenght  <45cm  and  >80cm  

All  13  years  

3)  enforce  the  small  fish  protocol  (<45cm)  

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