Last updated on 2 January 2017

SUMMARY

SUMMARY

IDENTIFICATION

SCIENTIFIC NAME(s)

Solea solea

SPECIES NAME(s)

Common sole, European Dover sole

Several studies indicated absence of population structure for sole populations in the Northeast Atlantic (Rolland et al., 2007). Recently, Cuveliers et al. (2012) revealed a clear genetic structure for sole in this region with at least three different populations: Kattegat/Skagerrak region, the North Sea and the Bay of Biscay, and with indications for a fourth population, namely the Irish/Celtic Sea. This study supports the current approach by ICES for assessing sole as biological stock units in the North Sea (ICES subarea IV), Skagerrak and Kattegat (ICES Division IIIa and Subdivisions 22–24) and Bay of Biscay (ICES Divisions VIIIa,b).

Adjacent sole assessment units defined by ICES- although not clearly identified as biological stocks- are: Eastern Channel (ICES Division VIId), Western Channel (ICES Division VIIe), Celtic Sea (ICES Divisions VIIf,g), Irish Sea (ICES Division VIId, SW of Ireland (ICES Divisions VIIh-k), West of Ireland (ICES Divisions VIIb,c) and Atlantic Iberian waters (ICES Divisions VIIIc and IXa).


ANALYSIS

Strengths

The stock has been within safe biological limits since 2012 and objectives of stage 1 (i.e., stock rebuilding) are currently met. IUU fishing is not an issue. A precautionary management plan is in place.

Weaknesses

Stock recovery can be related to strong year classes rather than to management options. Fishing mortality is decreasing but remains slightly above FMSY.

Options

Mesh size and minimum land size should be revised to promote discards’ reduction (of plaice) and benefit the stock. The recent increase in discard should also be investigated. Fishing mortality should continue to be reduced. Objectives, TAC procedures and effort limitations will be redefined in line with the second stage of the management plan.

FISHSOURCE SCORES

Management Quality:

Management Strategy:

≥ 8

Managers Compliance:

9.5

Fishers Compliance:

10

Stock Health:

Current
Health:

9.3

Future Health:

9


FIPS

No related FIPs

CERTIFICATIONS

  • CVO pulse sole & plaice:

    Withdrawn

Fisheries

Within FishSource, the term "fishery" is used to indicate each unique combination of a flag country with a fishing gear, operating within a particular management unit, upon a resource. That resource may have a known biological stock structure and/or may be assessed at another level for practical or jurisdictional reasons. A fishery is the finest scale of resolution captured in FishSource profiles, as it is generally the scale at which sustainability can most fairly and practically be evaluated.

ASSESSMENT UNIT MANAGEMENT UNIT FLAG COUNTRY FISHING GEAR
North Sea EU/Norway Denmark Bottom trawls
Set gillnets (anchored)
Trammel nets
France Trammel nets
Netherlands Beam trawls
Seine nets
Set gillnets (anchored)
Single boat bottom otter trawls

Analysis

OVERVIEW

Last updated on 4 September 2013

Strengths

The stock has been within safe biological limits since 2012 and objectives of stage 1 (i.e., stock rebuilding) are currently met. IUU fishing is not an issue. A precautionary management plan is in place.

Weaknesses

Stock recovery can be related to strong year classes rather than to management options. Fishing mortality is decreasing but remains slightly above FMSY.

Options

Mesh size and minimum land size should be revised to promote discards’ reduction (of plaice) and benefit the stock. The recent increase in discard should also be investigated. Fishing mortality should continue to be reduced. Objectives, TAC procedures and effort limitations will be redefined in line with the second stage of the management plan.

1.STOCK STATUS

STOCK ASSESSMENT

Last updated on 4 September 2013

The North Sea stock is assessed as a single stock although different subpopulations, based on egg distribution and tagging experiments, are identified (ICES, undated).
The age-based analytical assessment (XSA) uses two survey indices and one commercial index; discards and bycatch are not included.

Uncertainties are related to underestimation of fishing mortality (F) and overestimation of the stock spawning biomass (SSB). There may be some bias associated with the commercial data used to tune the assessment, because of gradual changes in gear composition (ICES, 2013a).

SCIENTIFIC ADVICE

Last updated on 4 September 2013

From 2010 ICES has started to gradually implement a Maximum Sustainable Yield (MSY) approach in its advice, which will generally be more cautious than the heretofore used precautionary approach (PA). During the transition, three options for catch advice will be presented: according to the MSY approach, the PA, and to a management plan satisfying fishery objectives that has been found to be precautionary (ICES, 2010b).

MSY approach: Following the MSY approach, implies a reduction in F to 0.22 (= Fmsy), resulting in landings of less than 11,194 tonnes in 2014 and expecting to lead to an SSB of 46,916 tonnes in 2015.

Precautionary approach: Adopting the PA and Fpa=0.40 would result in landings of 18,540 tonnes in 2014 and SSB at 39,175 tonnes in 2015.

Management plan (stage one, as rules for stage 2 are not yet defined): implies 10% decrease in F (to 0.21), resulting in landings of 11,194 tonnes, and a decrease in SSB to 46,070 tonnes in 2015 (ICES, 2013a).

Reference Points

Last updated on 04 Sep 2013

Reference points were revised in 2011. The precautionary biological reference point (Bpa) equals MSY Btrigger and SSB target of the management plan (stage one), at 35,000 tonnes; the limit reference point (Blim) is set at 25,000 tonnes. The precautionary fishing mortality reference point Fpa = Ftarget of the first stage of the management plan = 0.4; FMSY=0.22. The second stage of the management plan, which is not yet implemented, anticipates an Ftarget (ages 2-6) of 0.2 (ICES, 2013a).

CURRENT STATUS

Last updated on 4 September 2013

ICES states that the stock is currently in “full reproductive capacity" and that harvest levels are “appropriate”, i.e. in cccordance to management targets. SSB in 2013 was estimated at 50,546 tonnes, above BMSY and increasing. F has been decreasing and in 2012 was estimated at 0.30, below Fpa but still slightly above FMSY. The 2010 and 2011 year classes were below the long term average (ICES, 2013a).

Trends

Last updated on 04 Sep 2013

Landings increased from 12,000 tonnes to around 33,000 tonnes in the late 1960s, decreased in the sequent decade, increased to up to 35,000 tonnes (the maximum high) in 1990 and since then are progressively decreasing. SSB declined progressively during the 1980s due to high F (at 0.62 in 1984), with sporadic peaks as a result of strong year classes. During the 2000s it oscillated around Bpa and Blim, but has been increasing since 2009 and is above Bpa since 2012. F has been decreasing since 1996 (after the maximum peak at 0.71) and is below Fpa since 2008 (ICES, 2013a).

2.MANAGEMENT QUALITY

MANAGEMENT

Last updated on 1 October 2013

Sole is captured in a mixed fishery of flatfish and jointly managed with European plaice Pleuronectes platessa (ICES, 2012a; Keus et al., 2011); and directly targeted with gillnets (Rogers and Stocks, 2001). The TAC for 2013 was set at 14,000 tonnes (Regulation (EU) No 40/2013), in line with ICES advice. Mesh size of gillnets is 92mm and 96mm is very common to minimize the catch of non-target species (Keus et al., 2011). Effort (kW/days) by gillnets (and for all gear types) diminished due to effort restrictions introduced for the cod recovery. Minimum landing size is 24cm (ICES, 2012a). Additional controls such as Vessel Monitoring System (VMS) controls and regulations are applied to vessels over 15m and will be implemented in 12-15m vessels in 2011 (Keus et al., 2011).

A management plan is in place since 2007 with the aim to ensure the return of the stock (first stage) and the application of exploitation levels that guarantee high long-term sustainable yields (second stage) (ICES, 2012a,b; further details in the “Recovery plans” section). As stage one objectives are assumed to have been met, a proposal was recently made by Netherlands to redefine the target F to 0.25; but implementation of this second stage is not yet defined (ICES, 2013a).

Recovery Plans

Last updated on 01 Oct 2013

The multi-annual and two-phased management plan adopted by the European Commission (EC) (Regulation No 676/2007), for European plaice and Common sole, was implemented in 2008 and is in accordance with the PA (ICES, 2012a). First stage, as a recovery plan, aims to ensure that the sole stock is within safe biological limits (SSB>35,000 tonnes and F2-6<0.4) for two consecutive years, reducing F by 10% each year with a maximum TAC variation of 15% per year. Second stage, as a management plan, aims to ensure that the exploitation of the stock sole is on the basis of MSY, maintaining F(2-6)≤0.2. There are evidences that stage one objectives have been met (due to SSB maintenance above 35,000 tonnes for two consecutive years). According to ICES, amendments should thus be decided for stage two to redefine the objectives such as the procedure for the set TAC and effort limitations (ICES, 2013a).

COMPLIANCE

Last updated on 4 September 2013

In recent years catches generally been below the set TAC. Discarding is relatively low and IUU fishing is insignificant (ICES, 2013a).

3.ENVIRONMENT AND BIODIVERSITY

FishSource Scores

MANAGEMENT QUALITY

As calculated for 2013 data.

The score is ≥ 8.

A multiannual and two-stage management plan is in place since 2007, for both sole and plaice fisheries in the North Sea, which according to the ICES evaluation is considered to be precautionary. The plan consists of two main stages: recovery plan during its first stage and a management plan during its second stage. According to ICES, the objectives of stage 1 are currently met. The implementation of the second stage is not yet defined, however (ICES, 2013a).

As calculated for 2012 data.

The score is 9.5.

This measures the Set TAC as a percentage of the Advised TAC.

The Set TAC is 16.2 ('000 t). The Advised TAC is 15.7 ('000 t) .

The underlying Set TAC/Advised TAC for this index is 103%.

As calculated for 2011 data.

The score is 10.0.

This measures the Estimated catch as a percentage of the Set TAC.

The Estimated catch is 11.5 ('000 t). The Set TAC is 14.1 ('000 t) .

The underlying Estimated catch/Set TAC for this index is 81.5%.

STOCK HEALTH:

As calculated for 2012 data.

The score is 9.3.

This measures the SSB as a percentage of the SSBpa.

The SSB is 46.7 ('000 t). The SSBpa is 35.0 ('000 t) .

The underlying SSB/SSBpa for this index is 133%.

As calculated for 2011 data.

The score is 9.0.

This measures the F as a percentage of the F management target.

The F is 0.296 (age-averaged). The F management target is 0.400 .

The underlying F/F management target for this index is 74.0%.

To see data for biomass, please view this site on a desktop.
To see data for catch and tac, please view this site on a desktop.
To see data for fishing mortality, please view this site on a desktop.
No data available for recruitment
No data available for recruitment
To see data for management quality, please view this site on a desktop.
To see data for stock status, please view this site on a desktop.
DATA NOTES
  1. Fpa=Ftarget=0.4 defined in the first stage of the management plan implemented in 2007 (EC No 676/200); the second stage, on the basis of MSY, aims to maintain F2-6≤0.2, but there was a recent proposal to change target F to 0.25 (ICES, 2013a). The new plan, – subject to those amendments – was considered precautionary, but its implementation has yet to defined.
  2. Fat low biomass is not set thus score #1 was determined qualitatively.
  3. The set TAC comprises EU waters of ICES areas II and IV (Regulation (EU) No 40/2013).
  4. Landings include unallocated landings since 1982 (ICES, 2013a).

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Fishery Improvement Projects (FIPs)

No related FIPs

Certifications

Marine Stewardship Council (MSC)

SELECT MSC

NAME

CVO pulse sole & plaice

STATUS

Withdrawn on 17 November 2016

SCORES

Certification Type:

Sources

Credits
  1. Andrews, J, Cappell, R., and R. Millner, 2015. 2nd Annual Surveillance Report Prepared for Cooperative Fishery Organisation (CVO). Intertek Fisheries Certification (IFC), June 2015. 45pphttps://www.msc.org/track-a-fishery/fisheries-in-the-program/certified/north-east-atlantic/cooperative-fishery-organisation-cvo-north-sea-plaice-and-sole/assessment-downloads-1/82111_CVO_Surveillance_Report_2015_Final_060615.pdf
  2. Cappell, R., Millner, R., Pawson, M. and Combes, J. 2012. MSC Assessment Report for Dutch North Sea Plaice and Sole Fishery. Version: 5 Public Certification Report. Intertek Moody, December 2012. 340pp.http://www.msc.org/track-a-fishery/fisheries-in-the-program/in-assessment/north-east-atlantic/cooperative-fishery-organisation-cvo-north-sea-plaice-and-sole/assessment-downloads-1/20121219_PCR_PLA193.pdf
  3. Cappell, R. , Pawson, M., Millner, R., 2013. CVO North Sea Plaice and Sole Fishery – Annual Surveillance Report. Intertek Moody Marine, November 2013. 36pphttp://www.msc.org/track-a-fishery/fisheries-in-the-program/certified/north-east-atlantic/cooperative-fishery-organisation-cvo-north-sea-plaice-and-sole/assessment-downloads-1/20131211_SR_PLA193.pdf
  4. Cuveliers, E.L., Larmuseau, M.H.D., Hellemans, B., Verherstraeten, S.L.N.A., Volckaert, F.A.M., and Maes, G.E. 2012. Multi-marker estimate of genetic connectivity of sole (Solea solea) in the North-East Atlantic Ocean. Marine Biology, v. 159, 15 pp. http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs00227-012-1905-x
  5. Fisheries Society of the British Islands (FSBI), 2001. Marine protected areas in the North Sea. Briefing Paper 1, Fisheries Society of the British Isles, Granta Information Systems, 82A High Street, Sawston, Cambridge, 12 p.http://www.fsbi.org.uk/assets/brief-marine-protect-norefs.pdf
  6. Food Certification International Ltd, 2012. Surveillance Visit - Report for CVO Sole Gillnet Fishery, 3rd Annual Surveillance, December 2012. 23pp.http://www.msc.org/track-a-fishery/fisheries-in-the-program/certified/north-east-atlantic/CVO-sole-Gillnet/assessment-downloads-1/20121220_SR_SOL38.pdf
  7. Food Certification International (FCI), 2013. Surveillance Report 1 for the DFPO Denmark North Sea Sole Fishery. Food Certification International (FCI) Ltd. September 2013. 30 pp.http://www.msc.org/track-a-fishery/fisheries-in-the-program/certified/north-east-atlantic/dfpo_denmark_north_sea_sole/assessment-downloads-1/20130916_SR_V2_SOL239.pdf
  8. Food Certification International (FCI), 2014. On-Site Surveillance Visit - Report for DFPO Denmark North Sea Sole Fishery. 2nd Annual Surveillance. July 2014. 41pphttp://www.msc.org/track-a-fishery/fisheries-in-the-program/certified/north-east-atlantic/dfpo_denmark_north_sea_sole/assessment-downloads-1/20140918_SR_v3_SOL239.pdf
  9. Hammond, P.S., Bearzi, G., Bjørge, A., Forney, K., Karczmarski, L., Kasuya, T., Perrin, W.F., Scott, M.D., Wang, J.Y., Wells, R.S. & Wilson, B. 2008. Phocoena phocoena. In: IUCN 2012. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2012.1. [Accessed on 25 June 2012].http://www.iucnredlist.org/apps/redlist/details/17027/0
  10. Hervàs, A., Keus B.J., Read A. and Frederiksen M. 2012. DFPO Denmark North Sea sole Public Certification Report. Food Certification International Ltd, May 2012. 248 pp.http://www.msc.org/track-a-fishery/in-assessment/north-east-atlantic/dfpo-denmark-north-sea-sole/assessment-downloads-1/20120607_PCR.pdf
  11. ICES, undated. ICES Fish – map, Sole - Solea solea. http://www.ices.dk/marineworld/fishmap/ices/pdf/sole.pdf
  12. ICES, 2010a. Report of the ICES Advisory Committee, Book 6: The North Sea 6.4.10 Ecoregion: North Sea. Stock: Sole in Subarea IV (North Sea). Advice summary for 2011, 10 pp.http://www.ices.dk/sites/pub/Publication%20Reports/Advice/2010/2010/sol-nsea.pdf
  13. ICES, 2010b. Report of the ICES Advisory Committee, 2010. ICES Advice, 2010. Books 1 - 11. 1, 928 pp.http://www.ices.dk/sites/pub/Publication%20Reports/ICES%20Advice/2010/ICES%20ADVICE%202010%20BOOK%201.pdf
  14. ICES, 2011a. Report of the ICES Advisory Committee, Book 6: The North Sea 6.4.10 Ecoregion: North Sea. Stock: Sole in Subarea IV (North Sea). Advice summary for 2012, 11 pp.http://www.ices.dk/sites/pub/Publication%20Reports/Advice/2011/2011/sol-nsea.pdf
  15. ICES, 2011b. Report of the Working Group on the Assessment of Demersal Stocks in the North Sea and Skagerrak (WGNSSK), 4 - 10 May 2011, ICES Headquarters, Copenhagen. ICES CM 2011/ACOM:13. 1214 pp.http://www.ices.dk/sites/pub/Publication%20Reports/Expert%20Group%20Report/acom/2011/WGNSSK/WGNSSK%202011.pdf
  16. ICES, 2012a. Report of the ICES Advisory Committee, Book 6: The North Sea 6.4.10 Ecoregion: North Sea. Stock: Sole in Subarea IV (North Sea). Advice summary for 2013, 11 pp.http://www.ices.dk/sites/pub/Publication%20Reports/Advice/2012/2012/sol-nsea.pdf
  17. ICES, 2012b. Report of the Working Group on the Assessment of Demersal Stocks in the North Sea and Skagerrak (WGNSSK), 27 April - 3 May 2012, ICES Headquarters, Copenhagen. ICES CM 2012/ACOM:13.1346 pp.http://www.ices.dk/sites/pub/Publication%20Reports/Expert%20Group%20Report/acom/2012/WGNSSK/WGNSSK%202012.pdf
  18. ICES, 2013a. Report of the ICES Advisory Committee, Book 6: The North Sea 6.4.27 Ecoregion: North Sea. Stock: Sole in Subarea IV (North Sea). Advice summary for 2014, 11 pp.http://www.ices.dk/sites/pub/Publication%20Reports/Advice/2013/2013/sol-nsea.pdf
  19. ICES, 2013b. DRAFT Report of the Working Group on the Assessment of Demersal Stocks in the North Sea and Skagerrak (WGNSSK), 24 - 30 April 2013, ICES Headquarters, Co-penhagen. ICES CM 2013/ACOM:13. 6 pp.http://www.ices.dk/sites/pub/Publication%20Reports/Expert%20Group%20Report/acom/2013/WGNSSK/DRAFT%20Report%20of%20the%20Working%20Group%20on%20the%20Assessment%20of%20Demersal%20Stocks%20in%20the%20North%20Sea%20and%20Skagerrak.pdf
  20. Keus, B., Medley, P., Southall, T., Smith, R., 2011. The Dutch Fisheries Organisation (DFO) Gill Net Sole Fishery, 2nd Annual Public Surveillance Report, MSC Sustainable Fisheries Certification, 19 pp.http://www.msc.org/track-a-fishery/certified/north-east-atlantic/dfo-gill-net-sole/assessment-downloads-1/20111201_2nd_SR_Dutch_gillnet_sole.pdf
  21. Regulation (EC) No 676/2007 of 11 June 2007 establishing a multiannual plan for fisheries exploiting stocks of plaice and sole in the North Sea. 6 pp.http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=OJ:L:2007:157:0001:0006:EN:PDF
  22. Regulation (EU) No 40/2013 of 21 January 2013 fixing for 2013 the fishing opportunities available in EU waters and, to EU vessels, in certain non- EU waters for certain fish stocks and groups of fish stocks which are subject to international negotiations or agreements. 2013.http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=OJ:L:2013:023:0054:0153:EN:PDF
  23. Regulation (EU) No 44/2012 of 17 January 2012 fixing for 2012 the fishing opportunities available in EU waters and, to EU vessels, in certain non- EU waters for certain fish stocks and groups of fish stocks which are subject to international negotiations or agreementshttp://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=OJ:L:2012:025:0055:0147:EN:PDF
  24. Rogers, S. and Stocks, R. 2001. North and Sea Fisheries, Technical report produced for Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA2), Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science, 40 pp.http://cefas.defra.gov.uk/media/20461/tr_003.pdf 
  25. Rolland, J. L.; Bonhomme, F.; Lagardère, M.; Hassan, M.; Guinand, B. 2007. Population structure of the common sole (Solea solea) in the Northeastern Atlantic and the Mediterranean Sea: revisiting the divide with EPIC markers. Marine Biology, v. 151 (1). 17 pp. http://archimer.ifremer.fr/doc/2007/publication-2400.pdf 
  26. Southall, T., Medley, P., Keus, B., Gill, M., McFadden, M. 2009. Public Certification Report for the Dutch Fisheries Organisation (DFO) Gill Net Sole Fishery, MSC Sustainable Fisheries Certification, Food Certification International Limited, 100 p.http://www.msc.org/track-a-fishery/certified/north-east-atlantic/dfo-gill-net-sole/assessment-downloads-1/23.11.2009dsgn-pcr.pdf
References

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