Nephrops in the Norwegian Deep, Demersal otter trawl

Nephrops norvegicus
Content last updated
29 October 2019
Stock
Nephrops in the Norwegian Deep, Functional Unit 32
Management
EU
Stock Status
3 of 5
Moderate risk
Management
3 of 5
Moderate risk
Bycatch
5 of 5
Very high risk
Habitat
3 of 5
Moderate risk

Stock status

3 of 5
Moderate risk

The stock status of Nephrops in Norwegian Deeps, FU32 has been scored a moderate risk. This is because the stock size is unknown but the fishery is considered to exert harvest rates considerably below those for maximum sustainable yield (FMSY).

Management

3 of 5
Moderate risk

The fishery management of Nephrops in Norwegian Deeps, FU32 has been scored moderate risk. This is because the biennial assessment for this unit is considered to be data limited. Unlike most other FUs in ICES Subarea 4, the TAC for EU vessels fishing in the Norwegian Deeps is set specifically, potentially allowing more control although it is currently set above the advised TAC.

However, the advised TAC has not been fully taken since 2005 (1,033t) and current landings are lower than the advised TAC.

Surveillance of the fishery is considered effective with adequate enforcement and compliance.

Bycatch

5 of 5
Very high risk

The bycatch risk of this fishery are scored very high risk. This is because the bycatch and reported discard rates are high (>50%) in Nephrops trawls due to the small cod end mesh requirements of the target species.  However, measures to reduce bycatch and discards in these fisheries have been the subject of much research over the years, resulting in technical measures which improve selectivity, which in turn have been implemented as a statutory requirement.  Further measures, such as modified trawl designs, have been implemented on a non-statutory basis.   Furthermore, the cod recovery plan has been implemented in this area and this is expected to have had an influence on the discarding levels in North Sea demersal fisheries and the incoming EU landings obligation is also intended to reduce discarding.   Norwegian law also stipulates a larger minimum mesh size than the EU for vessels targeting the Norwegian Deeps Nephrops and demersal finfish fisheries at 120mm, though Nephrops are landed as a bycatch from shrimp trawlers with mesh sizes as low as 35mm.

Habitat

3 of 5
Moderate risk

The habitat risk of this fishery has been scored a moderate risk. This is because, with in the core area of this fishery there are vulnerable marine habitats identified and currently there is some spatial management to avoid trawling affecting these habitats.   However, there remains some uncertainties about the location of some sensitive seabed habitats so these remain at risk.