Nephrops, Firth of Clyde and Sound of Jura, Creel fishery
- Content last updated
- 04 June 2019
- Nephrops in Firth of Clyde and Sound of Jura; Functional Unit (FU) 13
- European Union
- Stock Status
Very low risk
Nephrops in the Firth of Clyde and Sound of Jura has been scored a low risk for stock status. The stock is in a safe condition but harvested at a rate slightly above optimum. The abundance has been well above the level associated with sustainable harvesting (MSY Btrigger) but the rate of harvest has fluctuated just above that associated with maximum sustainable yield since 1995.
The management of the stock of Nephrops in the Firth of Clyde and Sound of Jura has been identified as a low risk.
The stock is assessed annually by ICES. Although the Total Allowable Catch (TAC) is set for the West of Scotland (ICES Subarea 6) as a whole, which could lead to increases in fishing effort on individual functional units. However, there are safeguards under the Multi Annual Plan for the management of Western Waters fisheries to avoid overexploitation of these individual functional units.
Surveillance of enforceable measures outside of quota management can be considered moderately effective with adequate enforcement and compliance.
The bycatch risk of this fishery is scored as a low risk. This is because there are no routine discard surveys of creel fisheries. Although bycatch levels are estimated to be quite high, survival is considered to be good for most species. Measures to improve selectivity are available but the extent of their use is not known. Ghost fishing from Nephrops creels is, based on experimental observations, considered negligible. There are interactions with benthic species (sea pens) considered of to be of conservation importance but little evidence of serious effects
The habitat risk of this fishery is scored as a very low risk. This is because Nephrops creelers target specific habitats containing burrowing mud communities. Whilst there is no immediate concern for the effects of creeling on these communities, there is a process in place under the OSPAR convention and UK Marine Acts to avoid adverse impacts through the designation of Marine Protected Areas.