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Blue whiting goes quiet

‘The blue whiting fishery is very quiet now. It’s not as if this is a surprise, although there had been hopes that the good fishing would continue for a while,’ said Víkingur’s skipper Albert Sveinsson when we spoke to him.

Víkingur was towing in the southern part of the Ræsi grounds, around 50 nautical miles south-west of the Faroe Islands. By then, Víkingur and its crew had been at sea for a week, with 2100 tonnes in the tanks.

‘We have been doing long tows, up to twenty-four hours, and have been taking hauls of around 300 tonnes. There’s less today, but we’re hopeful. The blue whiting are very dispersed, ad they’re not easy to handle until they start to group together,’ Albert Sveinsson said.

He commented that they haven’t heard anything of the fishing further south in international waters, and it appears that the blue whiting have migrated north.

‘There was a Norwegian pelagic boat searching for blue whiting further south, but they didn’t find anything. They came up here yesterday and are fishing the northern Ræsi grounds.’

There are three Icelandic pelagic vessels fishing on the same grounds, with Venus and Aðalsteinn Jónsson fishing there, while Jón Kjartansson is on the way. In addition, there are a number of other fishing vessels, mainly from Russia and the Faroe Islands.

‘Venus has pretty much just arrived and they’re on their second tow. We could do with a good haul to finish the trip, and then we should manage one more trip before Seamen’s Day,’ Albert Sveinsson said.