Last updated on 14 December 2015

SUMMARY

SUMMARY

IDENTIFICATION

SCIENTIFIC NAME(s)

Trachurus trachurus

SPECIES NAME(s)

Atlantic horse mackerel

COMMON NAMES

Southern horse mackerel, Atlantic horse mackerel, European horse mackerel, scad

The southern stock is one of four stocks of horse mackerel in the Northeast Atlantic - WesternNorth SeaSaharo-Mauritanian - that have been distinguished based on genetic, parasite, morphometric, otolith and life history trait analyses (Abaunza et al. 2008), but the boundaries of their distribution areas have not been conclusively determined (ICES, 2009a). The border between the southern and the western horse mackerel stocks may, therefore, lie at the level of Cape Finisterre on the coasts of Galicia at 43°N while the southern limit of the southern horse mackerel stock is not as evident due to the lack of samples from the north of Africa (ICES, 2015). Since 2010 the management area and advice area have been identical (ICES, 2012a).


ANALYSIS

Strengths

Management area and advice area are the same since 2010. Fishers’ compliance has been strong. In 2014, set TAC followed the scientific advice but in 2015, managers set TAC below the scientific advice. Fishing mortality (0.044) has decreased since 2010 and is well below FMSY. Recruitment in 2011 and 2012 was well above long-term average. The outputs of the assessment of this stock show no signs of depletion and indicate a sustainable exploitation level.

Weaknesses

No management objectives have been explicitly defined and no reference points proposed. Confidence intervals for the assessment are very wide, showing a high uncertainty in the estimates. A single TAC is set for all Trachurus species. The most recent assessment is more uncertain than usual due to the missing IBTS survey in 2012.

FISHSOURCE SCORES

Management Quality:

Management Strategy:

≥ 6

Managers Compliance:

10

Fishers Compliance:

10

Stock Health:

Current
Health:

≥ 6

Future Health:

10


RECOMMENDATIONS

CATCHERS & REGULATORS

1. Advocate and support scientific institutions on establishing biomass reference points.
2. Catchers to provide data on the environmental impact of trawls.

RETAILERS & SUPPLY CHAIN

1. Write to ICES requesting that biomass reference points for the stock are developed.
2. Ask your supply chain to review, in association with catchers, the environmental impact of their trawl and seine gear and provide a response on status and any ongoing mitigation projects.
3. Contact the Pelagic Regional Advisory Council advising that the fishery does not presently meet your sustainability sourcing criteria and requesting advice on any planned mitigation and / or improvements.


FIPS

No related FIPs

CERTIFICATIONS

No related MSC fisheries

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
NE Atlantic southern stock EU Portugal Bottom trawls
Purse seines
Spain Bottom trawls
Purse seines

Analysis

OVERVIEW

Last updated on 7 May 2015

Strengths

Management area and advice area are the same since 2010. Fishers’ compliance has been strong. In 2014, set TAC followed the scientific advice but in 2015, managers set TAC below the scientific advice. Fishing mortality (0.044) has decreased since 2010 and is well below FMSY. Recruitment in 2011 and 2012 was well above long-term average. The outputs of the assessment of this stock show no signs of depletion and indicate a sustainable exploitation level.

Weaknesses

No management objectives have been explicitly defined and no reference points proposed. Confidence intervals for the assessment are very wide, showing a high uncertainty in the estimates. A single TAC is set for all Trachurus species. The most recent assessment is more uncertain than usual due to the missing IBTS survey in 2012.

RECOMMENDATIONS

Last updated on 28 June 2016

Improvement Recommendations to Catchers & Regulators

1. Advocate and support scientific institutions on establishing biomass reference points.
2. Catchers to provide data on the environmental impact of trawls.

Recommendations to Retailers & Supply Chain

1. Write to ICES requesting that biomass reference points for the stock are developed.
2. Ask your supply chain to review, in association with catchers, the environmental impact of their trawl and seine gear and provide a response on status and any ongoing mitigation projects.
3. Contact the Pelagic Regional Advisory Council advising that the fishery does not presently meet your sustainability sourcing criteria and requesting advice on any planned mitigation and / or improvements.

1.STOCK STATUS

STOCK ASSESSMENT

Last updated on 6 May 2015

An analytical assessment (AMISH model) is used. The assessment generally includes commercial landings data (landings and age and length frequencies from catch sampling) and abundance indices from (combined index) from Spanish and Portuguese trawl surveys (Pt-GFS-WIBTS-Q4 and Pt-GFS-WIBTS-Q4) as input data. However, there was no survey index for 2012 from the Portuguese survey due to logistical constraints; thus, it was not included in the assessment (ICES, 2013a,b).

Confidence intervals for the assessment are very wide, showing a high uncertainty in the estimates of F, SSB, and recruitment in recent years. Discards are not included in the assessment but are considered low (ICES, 2014a).

The basis for the assessment has not changed from last year, except for assumptions around recruitment in 2012.Estimates of recent recruitment are more uncertain than usual. This is due to the missing IBTS survey in 2012. The survey and catch data give an estimate of the 2012 recruitment being the highest in the time series. Due to the uncertainty, the 2012 year class was assumed to be at the previous maximum level (recruitment in 2011) (ICES, 2014a).

SCIENTIFIC ADVICE

Last updated on 6 May 2015

Given the high uncertainty in the assessment estimates, ICES current advice for this stock is solely based on the MSY approach. Following the MSY approach implies increasing current fishing mortality by a factor of 2.4, resulting in catches of 71,824 tons in 2015, over twice the 2014 TAC. This is expected to lead to an increase of the Spawning Stock Biomass (SSB). Keeping the fishing mortality in 2015 at 2014 levels (0.046) would imply catches of 31,000 tons for Trachurus trachurus. ICES advise that managers may want to consider limiting the increase in catch because the assessment and current recruitment estimates are more uncertain than usual (ICES, 2014a). The uncertainty is mainly due to the missing survey in 2012. Since 2010, the management area and advice area are the same (ICES, 2010b).

Reference Points

Last updated on 06 May 2015

No reference points have yet been defined for this stock (ICES, 2014a). A proxy for FMSY based on F35%SPR (0.11) has been in use since 2013 (ICES, 2014a).

CURRENT STATUS

Last updated on 6 May 2015

The current state of the stock cannot be evaluated against biological reference points, as none have been defined yet. However the outputs of the 2014 assessment of this stock show a stable spawning stock biomass at long term average levels (ICES, 2014a) and show no signs of depletion and indicate a sustainable exploitation level (ICES, 2014b). Fishing mortality (0.044) has decreased since 2010 being at present around 60% below the long-term average and below the proxy for FMSY (0.11). Recruitment in 2011 is estimated to be well above long-term average due to two good recruitments events spotted by the surveys in 2011 and 2012 (ICES, 2014b). More recent recruitments estimates are lower but more uncertain than usual (ICES, 2014a).

Trends

Last updated on 06 May 2015

Landings and fishing mortality (F) have been relatively stable since the late 1990s, with a decrease in F in the tree most recent years. The spawning stock was relatively stable until 2007, but has been on a decreasing trend since then until 2011. The spawning stock has been increasing in the last years and is now at long-term average. Recruitment appears to follow a cyclical pattern, with occasional strong year classes, the latter of which in 2011 and 2012 (ICES, 2014a). Landings reached the lowest value in 2003 but have been present an increasing trend since then. In 2012 Portuguese bottom trawl fleet, Portuguese purse seine fleet and Spanish purse seine fleet showed a similar exploitation pattern with a great presence of juveniles and lower abundance of adults (ICES, 2013b).

2.MANAGEMENT QUALITY

MANAGEMENT

Last updated on 19 December 2008

No management objectives are explicitly defined for this stock. In 2010, the EU followed the ICES advice and started setting separate TACs for ICES Division VIIIc and Subarea IX: the later corresponding to the southern stock of horse mackerel (ICES, 2010b). Set TACs have remained however above advised TACs, with exception in 2012 and 2014. In 2013, the TAC was set at 30,000 tonnes (EC No. 39/2013), 13% above the advised TAC (26,000 tonnes)(ICES, 2013a). In 2014, set TAC followed the scientific advice (35,000 tonnes) (EC 43/2014) but for 2015, managers set TAC below the scientific advice (Regulation (EU) 2015/104; ICES, 2014a). The set TAC applies to all Trachurus spp., whereas ICES’ advice applies only to Trachurus trachurus in Division IXa.

A minimum landing size of 15 cm is in force for Trachurus trachurus in the European Union (Regulation (EC) No 850/98). For both Portugal and Spain fleets, no more than 5 % by live weight of the total catches retained on board may consist of horse mackerel between 12 and 14 cm (EC No. 39/2013).

Recovery Plans

Last updated on 19 Dec 2008

Not applicable.

COMPLIANCE

Last updated on 6 May 2015

Until 2009, the area and species covered by management measures and scientific advice did not coincide. Compliance by fishers has been however strong, and the TAC has generally not been exceeded when considering either TAC areas or advice areas. Landings in 2012 (25,000 tonnes) were 19% lower than the set TAC.In 2013, landings (29,000 tonnes) almost reached the TAC (30,000 tonnes) (ICES, 2014b). Discards are thought to be minimal (ICES, 2013a; ICES, 2014a).

3.ENVIRONMENT AND BIODIVERSITY

BYCATCH
ETP Species

Last updated on 6 May 2015

Horse mackerel is part of the diet of several top predators in the region including cetaceans and seabirds (ICES, 2008b). Cetacean bycatch has been observed during purse – seining, occurring particularly with the common dolphin Delphinus delphis (Wise et al., 2005).

In an interview study, fishers reported incidental bycatch of cetaceans, mainly in trawls, purse-seines, and single-panel bottom-set gillnets, identifying common dolphin as the species most frequently bycaught (53.3%), followed by non-identified cetaceans (23.3%) and bottlenose dolphin (18.3%), (Goetz et al., 2013).

Purse-seines bycatch mainly occurred in shallower waters (<100 m). According to fishers, animals encircled in purse-seines usually survived, either by escaping unaided or being helped to escape by the lowering of the corkline. (Goetz et al., 2013).

Purse-seines can be considered to have a low impact on cetacean mortality due to the high survival rate of encircled dolphins (López et al., 2003; Aguilar, 1997; Wise et al., 2007; Hamer et al., 2008).

The Iberian Peninsula is of particular importance to numerous migrating seabird populations. Fisheries may affect seabird populations by supplying discards but discard estimates for the fishery are too incomplete to allow the effect to be quantified. Information on seabird bycatch in the fishery is also scarce. Demersal trawlers represent a particular bycatch hazard for the two species of sea turtles that occur year-round in the south of the region. Sea turtles have also been reported as bycatch in the purse seine-fishery, with the latest estimate for the Portuguese fleet of 24 captures per year (ICES, 2013c).

Other Species

Last updated on 6 May 2015

The pelagic target species captured by the vessels are sardine, Atlantic mackerel, Atlantic horse mackerel and anchovy. However, anchovy landings have been banned by the European Commission in this area throughout most of the past decade, due to the increased overexploitation of the fishery. Other bycatch species include bogue, white sea bream and common sole (Vázquez-Rowe et al., 2010).

Overall bycatches and discards are assumed as scarce by ICES (ICES, 2012a; ICES, 2014a). Specific regulations to reduce bycatch/discards, such minimum mesh sizes and minimum landing sizes, are in place in both Portuguese and Spanish fisheries.

The new CFP regulation provides for the obligation to land all catches of species subject to TACs or limits and that they are attributed to the respective quotes. The regulation (UE) N o 1380/2013 establishes control of landings of more than ten tonnes of horse mackerel and for the mackerel fishery entered into force from January 2015 and includes the preparation of discards plans.

HABITAT

Last updated on 20 October 2009

Bottom trawling is known to impact on benthic communities, and this has been observed in the Bay of Biscay, with a decrease in the mean trophic level of demersal and benthic fisheries and severe declines in some fish and crustacean species (ICES, 2008d). Maerl beds and the cold-water coral Lophelia pertusa are known to be present in this ecoregion (ICES, 2008e). L. pertusa, which has a diverse community associated with it, is a recent subject of concern due to the damage that is found to be caused by bottom trawling (ICES, 2002; Hall-Spencer and Stehfest, 2009).

Marine Reserves

Last updated on 20 Oct 2009

Closed areas to either purse-seining or bottom trawling operate at certain times of the year. In addition, the extension to marine areas of the EU Natura 2000 network of special conservation areas, under the Birds Directive 79/409/EEC and the Habitats Directive 92/43/EEC is currently underway and special fishery management measures may be applied. Existing marine protected areas within the stock’s distribution include six areas in Spain, ranging from a Natural Landscape to a National Park and ten areas on the Portuguese coast among Protected Landscapes, Nature Reserves and Nature Parks (Wood, 2007) of which at least one, the Berlengas Nature Reserve, is known to implement certain fishing restrictions (RCM No. 000/2007).

FishSource Scores

SELECT SCORES

MANAGEMENT QUALITY

As calculated for 2015 data.

The score is ≥ 6.

No management objectives are explicitly defined; no reference points have been set except a provisional proxy for FMSY. There is considerable uncertainty in the assessment although it’s thought stock size has been generally underestimated and fishing mortality overestimated (ICES, 2014a). (ICES, 2014a). The outputs of the assessment of this stock show no signs of depletion and indicate a sustainable exploitation level. Fishing mortality is estimated at low levels (ICES, 2014b).

As calculated for 2015 data.

The score is 10.0.

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

The Set TAC is 59.5 ('000 t). The Advised TAC is 71.8 ('000 t) .

The underlying Set TAC/Advised TAC for this index is 82.8%.

As calculated for 2013 data.

The score is 10.0.

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

The Catch is 29.4 ('000 t). The Set TAC is 30.0 ('000 t) .

The underlying Catch/Set TAC for this index is 97.9%.

STOCK HEALTH:

As calculated for 2015 data.

The score is ≥ 6.

No biomass reference points are defined for this stock. The Spawning Stock Biomass (SSB) was re-estimated in 2014 to be relatively stable and the long term average although the assessment is more uncertain than usual. Recruitment in 2011 and 2012 was estimated to be well above average (ICES, 2014a).

As calculated for 2013 data.

The score is 10.0.

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

The F is 0.0440 (age-averaged). The F management target is 0.110 .

The underlying F/F management target for this index is 40.0%.

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

Notes:
1) Set TAC applies to all Trachurus spp. and to Subarea IX since 2010 whereas all other parameters apply only to T. trachurus in Division IXa, apart from landings up to 1991, which are from Division VIIIc and Subarea IX.
2) As no reference points are defined for the stock, the precaution of the management strategy and the present and future health of the stock have been scored qualitatively.
3) Advised TAC for 2015 (71,800 tonnes) is based on the MSY approach.
4) Spanish catches from Subdivision IXa South are only available since 2002 (included in the time-series).

Download Source Data

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Fishery Improvement Projects (FIPs)

No related FIPs

Certifications

Marine Stewardship Council (MSC)

No related MSC certifications

Sources

Credits
  1. Aguilar, A. ,1997. Inventario de los cetáceos de las aguas atlánticas peninsulares: aplicación de la directiva 92/43/CEE. Memoria Final. Departamento de Biología Animal (Vert.), Facultad de Biología, Universitat de Barcelona. 189 pp.http://www.magrama.gob.es/es/costas/publicaciones/bm_bbdd_inventario_atlanticas_tcm7-18374.pdf
  2. Costa, M.E., Erzini, K. and Borges, T.C., 2008. Bycatch of crustacean and fish bottom trawl fisheries from southern Portugal (Algarve). Scientia Marina, 72: 801-814.http://www.icm.csic.es/scimar/download.php/Cd/d10ace2a4d5486c59a618328daf151b9/IdArt/3758
  3. EC, 2008. Non-paper: Review of the TAC-areas for horse mackerel. European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries.http://www.pelagic-rac.org/images/stories/Documents/recommendations/2008-2009/consultation_20080527_ec_-_horse_mackerel_areas.pdf
  4. EC 39/2013. Council Regulation (EU) No 39/2013 of 21 January 2013 fixing for 2013 the fishing opportunities available to EU vessels for certain fish stocks and groups of fish stocks which are not subject to international negotiations or agreements. Official Journal of the European Union, 25.1.2013.http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=OJ:L:2013:023:0001:0053:EN:PDF
  5. Goetz, S., Read, F.L., Santos, M.B., Pita, C., and Pierce, G.J., 2013. Cetacean–fishery interactions in Galicia (NW Spain): results and management implications of a face-to-face interview survey of local fishers. ICES Journal of Marine Science. http://icesjms.oxfordjournals.org/content/early/2013/09/15/icesjms.fst149.abstract
  6. Hall-Spencer, J.M. and Stehfest, K.M., 2009. Assessment of Lophelia pertusa reefs in the OSPAR area. Joint Nature Conservation Committee (JNCC) - OSPAR Commission. 29 pp.http://www.ospar.org/html_documents/ospar/html/p00423_AT%20BDC%20REVISED%20VERSION%20UK_Lophelia.pdf
  7. Hamer, D., Ward, T. and McGarvey, 2008. Measurement, management and mitigation of operational interactions between the South Australian sardine fishery and short-beaked common dolphins (Delphinus delphis). Biological Conservation, 141: 2865–2878.http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0006320708003273
  8. ICES, 2002. Distribution of cold-water corals in the Northeast Atlantic in relation to fisheries.http://www.ices.dk
  9. ICES, 2008a. Report of the ICES Advisory Committee on Fishery Management, Advisory Committee on the Marine Environment and Advisory Committee on Ecosystems, Book 7: The Bay of Biscay and Iberian Seas. 7.4.4 Southern horse mackerel (Trachurus trachurus) (Division IXa).http://www.ices.dk/sites/pub/Publication%20Reports/ICES%20Advice/2008/ICES%20ADVICE%202008%20Book%207.pdf
  10. ICES, 2008b. Report of the Working Group on Widely Distributed Stocks (WGWIDE), 2-11 September 2008, ICES Headquarters, Copenhagen (ICES CM 2008\ACOM:13).http://www.ices.dk/sites/pub/Publication%20Reports/Expert%20Group%20Report/acom/2008/WGWIDE/01%20-%20Introduction.pdf
  11. ICES, 2008c. Report of the ICES Advisory Committee, Book 7: The Bay of Biscay and Iberian Seas. 7.3.2 Assessment and advice regarding fisheries.http://www.ices.dk/sites/pub/Publication%20Reports/ICES%20Advice/2008/ICES%20ADVICE%202008%20Book%207.pdf
  12. ICES, 2008d. Report Of The Working Group For Regional Ecosystem Description (WGRED), 25–29 February 2008, Copenhagen, Denmark (ICES CM 2008/ACOM:47).http://www.ices.dk/sites/pub/Publication%20Reports/Expert%20Group%20Report/acom/2008/WGRED/wgred_2008.pdf
  13. ICES, 2008e. Report of the ICES Advisory Committee, Book 7: The Bay of Biscay and Iberian Seas. 7.1 Ecosystem overview.http://www.ices.dk/sites/pub/Publication%20Reports/ICES%20Advice/2008/ICES%20ADVICE%202008%20Book%207.pdf
  14. ICES, 2009a. Report of the Working Group on Widely Distributed Stocks (WGWIDE), 2-8 September 2009, Copenhagen, Denmark (ICES CM 2009/ACOM:12).http://www.ices.dk/sites/pub/Publication%20Reports/Expert%20Group%20Report/acom/2009/WGWIDE/WGWIDE09.pdf
  15. ICES, 2009b. Report of the ICES Advisory Committee, Book 7: The Bay of Biscay and Iberian Seas. 7.4.4 Horse mackerel (Trachurus trachurus) in Division IXa (Southern stock).http://www.ices.dk/sites/pub/Publication%20Reports/ICES%20Advice/2009/ICES%20ADVICE%202009%20Book%207.pdf
  16. ICES, 2010a. Report of the ICES Advisory Committee, Book 7: The Bay of Biscay and Western Iberian Seas. 7.4.6 Horse mackerel (Trachurus trachurus) in Division IXa (Southern stock).http://www.ices.dk/sites/pub/Publication%20Reports/ICES%20Advice/2010/ICES%20ADVICE%202010%20BOOK%207.pdf
  17. ICES, 2010b. Report of the Working Group on Widely Distributed Stocks (WGWIDE), 28 August - 3 September 2010, Vigo, Spain (ICES CM 2010/ACOM:15)http://www.ices.dk/sites/pub/Publication%20Reports/Expert%20Group%20Report/acom/2010/WGWIDE/WGWIDE%202010.pdf
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  19. ICES, 2011a. Report of the ICES Advisory Committee, Book 7: The Bay of Biscay and Atlantic Iberian waters 7.4.6 Ecoregion: Bay of Biscay and Atlantic Iberian waters. Stock: Horse mackerel (Trachurus trachurus) in Division IXa (Southern stock). Advice summary for 2012, 5 pp. http://www.ices.dk/sites/pub/Publication%20Reports/ICES%20Advice/2011/ICES%20ADVICE%202011%20BOOK%207.pdf
  20. ICES, 2011b. Report of the Working Group on Anchovy and Sardine (WGANSA), 24 - 28 June 2011, Vigo, Spain. ICES CM 2011\ACOM:16. 470 pp.http://www.ices.dk/sites/pub/Publication%20Reports/Expert%20Group%20Report/acom/2011/WGHANSA/WGANSA%202011%20.pdf
  21. ICES, 2012a. Report of the ICES Advisory Committee, Book 7: The Bay of Biscay and Iberian Seas. 7.4.4 Horse mackerel (Trachurus trachurus) in Division IXa (Southern stock).http://www.ices.dk/sites/pub/Publication%20Reports/Advice/2012/2012/hom-soth.pdf
  22. ICES, 2012b. Report of the Working Group on Southern Horse Mackerel, Anchovy and Sardine (WGHANSA), 23 - 28 June 2012, Azores (Horta), Portugal. ICES CM 2012/ACOM:16. 544pp. http://www.ices.dk/sites/pub/Publication%20Reports/Expert%20Group%20Report/acom/2012/WGHANSA/WGHANSA%20Report%202012.pdf
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  27. ICES, 2014a. Report of the ICES Advisory Committee, Book 7:The Bay of Biscay and Iberian Seas. 7.4.4 Horse mackerel (Trachurus trachurus) in Division IXa (Southern stock). http://www.ices.dk/sites/pub/Publication%20Reports/Advice/2014/2014/hom-soth.pdf
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  33. Regulation (EC) No 850/98 of 30 March 1998 for the conservation of fishery resources through technical measures for the protection of juveniles of marine organisms. 55 pp.http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=OJ:L:1998:125:0001:0036:EN:PDF
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  36. Wise L, Ferreira M, Silva M, Sequeira M, Silva A, 2005. Study of the interactions between marine mammals and the purse-seine fishery on the west coast of Portugal (in Portuguese). Relatórios Científicos e Técnicos IPIMAR, Série digital nº25.http://ipimar-iniap.ipimar.pt/servicos/biblioteca/edicoes/relatorios-s-digital/Reln26final.pdf
  37. Wood LJ, 2007. MPA Global: A database of the world’s marine protected areas. Sea Around Us Project, UNEP-WCMC & WWF [accessed on 17 October 2009].http://www.mpaglobal.org/
References

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    Atlantic horse mackerel - NE Atlantic southern stock

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