The quantity of mackerel in the waters around Iceland, the Faroe Islands and between east Iceland and the coast of Norway is estimated to have been 2.7 milion tons this summer, of which 1.1 million tons, or 42 percent, are believed to have been in Icelandic fishing grounds.
Fishing in Iceland. Photo by Bjarni Brynjólfsson.
This was concluded after a joint expedition by Icelandic, Faroese and Norwegian marine researchers, Morgunbladid reports.
The same parties conducted an expedition in the summer of 2010 when the total size of the mackerel stock was estimated at 4.4 million tons with a similar amount being in Icelandic waters as this summer.
The difference in the total stock size between years is believed to lie in the fact that this year’s expedition took place in a smaller area.
This summer’s conclusions are said to confirm that the oldest mackerel travels the longest in search for food. According to Fréttabladid, they also confirm the importance of Icelandic waters in the mackerel’s search for food in the summer.
The negotiations between Iceland, the European Union and Norway on how to split the mackerel quota will resume on October 18.
In spite of the significant presence of mackerel in Icelandic waters, the country’s negotiation parties believe Iceland has a limited claim to the shared mackerel quota, a position which Icelandic authorities have been unwilling to accept.
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