The outlook for capelin fisheries became a little more positive yesterday when a capelin vessel from the Westmann Islands found new schools of capelin in Breidafjordur, Morgunbladid reported. [18.03.08]
Fishing for capelin has been pretty bleak this season as a moratorium on capelin fishing was issued in late February. The moratorium was lifted six days later as huge schools of capelin had been found off the south coast. The allowed quota was then set at 150,000 tons.
Capelin fishing vessels were not able to fish the set quota before the spawning season started off the south coast. After spawning it becomes worthless. The capelin caviar is worth the most and whole, quick frozen capelin is sold to Japan. The rest goes to making fish meal and oil.
Capelin is a very unpredictable fish and is sometimes hard to find. Usually it runs from north of Iceland, follows the east coast and then comes to the spawning grounds in the south. Occasionally the capelin stock splits up and parts of it run from the west. That has happened now, to the joy of fishing vessel owners and the capelin industry.