Nephrops, South Minch (Division 6.a, FU12), Creel fishery
- Content last updated
- 04 June 2019
- Nephrops in South Minch; Functional Unit (FU) 12
- European Union
- Stock Status
Very low risk
Nephrops in the South Minch has been scored low risk for stock status. This because the harvest rate is below the advised rate for Maximum Sustained Yield (FMSY), and the stock is estimated to be above the level at which it can be sustainably harvested level (MSY Btrigger). Consequently, this stock is considered to be harvested sustainably within safe biological limits.
The management of the stock of Nephrops in the South Minch has been identified as a low risk. This is The functional unit (stock) is assessed annually by ICES. The Total Allowable Catch (TAC) is set for the West of Scotland (ICES Sub area 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 are scored as a low risk. There are no routine discard surveys of creel fisheries. Although bycatch levels are 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 are scored as a very low risk. 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.