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Slow fishing for blue whiting

Pelagic vessels Venus and Víkingur are now in Vopnafjörður to land around 2100 tonnes of blue whiting, the results of their first trips off the east of Iceland.

According to Víkingur’s skipper Hjalti Einarsson, they docked in Vopnafjörður with around 800 tonnes for a week’s fishing.

‘There isn’t a lot of blue whiting to be seen on the fishing grounds, which are the bank off the Litla Deep to the south as far as the Vopnafjörður shallows to the north. The blue whiting are only caught during daylight and as soon as darkness falls, they disappear. We’ve been able to tow for ten hours a day, and then it’s all over until daylight,’ he said, adding that the blue whiting are unusually large, fine quality fish.

Several Icelandic vessels have been fishing for blue whiting recently, and Hjalti Einarsson expects this to continue for a while. While catches are nothing special, fishing grounds are very close to Vopnafjörður. There was virtually no by-catch in Víkingur’s first trip, and he commented that the main thing to avoid is the herring that has been present on east coast grounds through the autumn in large amounts.