EU standing request on catch scenarios for zero TAC stocks 2022; western Baltic spring-spawning herring (Clupea harengus)
ICES has provided estimates of the estimated catches of western Baltic spring-spawning herring (WBSS herring), under the assumption that only the fleets that target other species or stocks will be fishing in 2023.
For herring (Clupea harengus) in subdivisions 20–24, 6142 tonnes (t) of spring spawners (Skagerrak, Kattegat, and western Baltic) are estimated to be caught, assuming the same catch as in the intermediate year 2022 for the human-consumption fleet in the North Sea (fleet A), which targets North Sea autumn-spawning herring. Fleet D, which targets sprat and is usually considered in this scenario, is assumed to have negligible catches (zero catch) in the forecast based on the low catch of WBSS herring catches in this fleet in recent years. This leads to the assumption that 3.a TAC is fully taken by the C-fleet.
WBSS herring has been advised a zero catch since 2018. The current assessment estimates a slowly increasing SSB since 2020 following the large decrease in fishing mortality in the recent years. The estimated SSB resulting from the F = 0 catch scenario in the 2022 advice compared to the same scenario in the previous advices (2018-2021), however, clearly shows an upward increase in the rebuilding time as catches of WBSS herring still occurs.
Published under the auspices of the following ICES Steering Group or Committee