Herring fishing in perfect weather
‘We just took our second tow pair trawling with Ingunn AK, and we have around 600 tonnes of herring on board, so now we’re steaming to Vopnafjördur. There was a spell of unsettled weather last night, but since then and through the day today there has been perfect flat calm weather. We’re right in the centre of the depression and it’s a great place to be,’ joked skipper Stefán Geir Jónsson on Lundey NS.
When we spoke to him, Lundey was in a position on the outer edge of the Glettinganes Bank, 65 nautical miles east of Vopnafjördur. The fine weather there is a surprise considering the storm conditions across the whole of northern Iceland with heavy snow, many power lines down and roads closed across a wide area.
According to Stefán Geir Jónsson, their trip started two days ago with two night and evening hauls taken alongside Faxi RE now that HB Grandi’s pelagic vessels are pair trawling on herring. Last night they took a third haul and Faxi departed to discharge in Vopnafjördur with close to 600 tonnes of herring on board. Ingunn arrived on the fishing grounds to replace Faxi and to tow alongside Lundey. The first haul was completed this morning and a second tow after midday yielded a further 300 tonnes of herring after a five hour tow.
‘This is good quality, large herring and there isn’t any mackerel in the catch,’ Stefán Geir Jónsson said.
Magnús Róbertsson, factory manager at Vopnafjördur, agreed with the skipper’s opinion, commenting that most of the herring is in the 350 to 370 grammes size bracket, and all of the herring is produced into frozen butterfly fillets.
HB Grandi’s herring fishery began last week on the back of a successful mackerel season, with Lundey, Ingunn and Faxi landing their entire catches to the factory at Vopnafjördur. Faxi is now alongside at Vopnafjördur and as soon as its fish is discharged will be on its way back to fishing grounds to join Ingunn to continue fishing.