April 1, 2021 – At today’s virtual advisory meeting, FFAW-Unifor representatives highlighted what continues to be an extremely positive news story in Gulf Atlantic Halibut. DFO Science has confirmed that this stock is the highest of the recorded time series comprised of fish from all size ranges. In the past 4 years, harvesters in Newfoundland and Labrador have participated in a Gulf-wide post-season longline survey, which added significant additional information to the assessment. The analysis from the survey concluded that it will take some more time to establish a biomass estimate.
“We’ve seen the unbelievable abundance of this stock and want to emphasize just how important this fishery has become to harvesters on the West Coast. Our request of a 30% increase for 2 years is very reasonable in consideration of this abundance,” said Loomis Way, harvester and FFAW Executive Board Member.
On other important species, the recommendation was Status Quo on 4RST Turbot and a 500mt increase on the current 1,000mt TAC for Northern Gulf Cod. On the latter, an excellent sign of new recruits captured in the 2020 Mobile Surveys has to be tempered against the significantly high natural mortality and the increasing presence of grey seals, noting the devastation attributed to cod and other marine species in the Southern Gulf.