Profile updated on 22 May 2023





Scomber colias


Atlantic chub mackerel, Chub mackerel

The Atlantic chub mackerel, Scomber colias, is widely distributed on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean, including the Mediterranean and Black Seas (ICES 2020)(ICES 2021).

The dynamics and stock identity of Atlantic chub mackerel in Atlantic European and Atlantic African waters remain unknown (ICES 2021). A recent ICES workshop mentioned a potential distribution boundary in the Strait of Gibraltar based on latitudinal trends of several biological parameters, which would support the separation of an NW African stock, but the connectivity of the Mediterranean distribution is unclear (ICES 2021). Further studies are underway (ICES 2020)(ICES 2021).

While no assessment is conducted in European and Mediterranean waters, the FAO CECAF assesses chub mackerel within NW African waters as a single stock (FAO 2020)


  • CECAF, the FAO Fishery Committee for the Eastern Central Atlantic, conducts regular stock assessments of the main small pelagic species in NW Africa. The last assessments were conducted in 2020 and 2021 considering multiple models and data sources. In the case of the chub mackerel, a single stock in the NW African region was considered (FAO 2020)(FAO 2022). Results from the 2021 assessment are considered preliminary (FAO 2022).
  • The fishery of small pelagic species, including chub mackerel, is regulated through a fishery management plan that includes effort limits and closed areas (Ministère de l’Agriculture et de la Pêche Maritime (MAPM) 2015)(FAO 2020).


Management Quality:

Management Strategy:

≥ 6

Managers Compliance:

≥ 6

Fishers Compliance:

≥ 6