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Herring deep west of Reykjanes

The first Icelandic summer-spawning herring of the year were caught last week after the fleet searching for them found the fish deep off the Reykjanes Peninsula and Faxaflói Bay. 

According to Albert Sveinsson, skipper of HB Grandi’s pelagic vessel Víkingur, the herring are dispersed over a wide area, but appear to be in good condition and have an average weight of around 300 grammes.

Víkingur was steaming east off Eyjafjörður when we spoke to Albert Sveinsson yesterday, and he expected to be alongside at Vopnafjördur late that evening.

‘It wasn’t easy to find them this time. We sailed in the middle of October, as did Venus, to look for herring and there was nothing to be seen off the west coast. We did one blue whiting trip and then went back to the west coast. That time there was a storm blowing and couldn’t see much, and before long we were back in Reykjavík. We stayed there until there were reports of herring, so we sailed and had our first haul on Saturday,’ he said, adding there are now four boats fishing for herring there.

‘We started around sixty nautical miles west of Garðsskagi and worked our way northwards from there. The last of five tows was hauled deep in the Kolluáll Gully yesterday and we started steaming for Vopnafjörður at 1600.’

He commented that it is not easy to estimate just how much herring there is west of Iceland.

‘The marks weren’t strong and the herring appear to be dispersed over a very wide area. It seems to be the same situation everywhere. Fishing is slowest around the middle of the day and is at its best in the morning and late in the afternoon,’ Albert Sveinsson said.