Herring and mackerel moving fast
‘Both herring and mackerel are moving quickly and as an example, we were fishing on a very good mark we found off Glettinganes three days ago. The marks were very strong and in three days we have followed this shoal as it has shifted around 100 nautical miles, first east and then south-east. Yesterday we towed for 30 nautical miles south-east and there was plenty to be seen. But in the evening it was as if everything disappeared. At first we thought the fish had dropped down to 100 fathoms, which isn’t unusual, but that wasn’t what had happened.’
This is according to Stefán Geir Jónsson, skipper on board Lundey NS for this trip, when we spoke to him in the afternoon when Lundey was steaming to Vopnafjördur with 380 tonnes on board. This is estimated to be 220 tonnes of herring and 160 tonnes of mackerel.
Stefán Geir Jónsson said that there had been little to be had during the night, and by the time the decision had been taken to head to Vopnafjördur, Lundey was 50 nautical miles off the Faroese line, with most of the fleet now fishing between 30 and 40 miles from the line. The fishing area right now is some 120 nautical miles directly east of Nordfjördur, while the fishing around the Hvalbak and Thors Bank areas, where pelagic boats and freezer trawlers have been fishing for several weeks, appears to have dried up completely.
‘The problem now is that we can’t seem to find anything other than mixed catches, when earlier in the summer it was no problem to find clean herring in one place and nothing but mackerel in another. Now it seems that the herring and mackerel are keeping to the same areas,’ Stefán Geir Jónsson said, adding that he had intended to add to what is in their tanks, but those plans didn’t work out when the fish were nowhere to be found.
‘We have about 100 nautical miles to go to Vopnafjördur, and as we have plenty of time, I’m hoping to see some decent marks on the way and take a bag or two,’ he said and commented that the factory is now processing fish landed by Faxi RE at Vopnafjördur, which is expected to be finished some time tonight. Ingunn AK is on its way back to fishing grounds and al three pelagic boats have contributed to keeping production running at full speed at the Vopnafjördur pelagic factory.