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28.07.2009

Big landings after heavy weekend fishing

Fishing on herring was exceptionally heavy at the weekend and most of those pelagic vessels that do not have processing on board are either in port or on their way there. Arnthór Hjörleifsson, skipper of HB Grandi’s Lundey NS, said that there had been extremely heavy fishing late Sunday in an area roughly 100 nautical miles east of Vopnafjördur.

Lundey was in port in Vopnafjördur yesterday and Arnthór Hjörleifsson said that he was waiting to tie up while Ingunn AK was discharging 1900 tonnes at the quayside. He estimated that Lundey has 1550 tonnes in its tanks after a trip pair trawling with Faxi RE, which was then steaming to Eskifjördur with around 1500 tonnes of fish on board.

According to Arnthór Hjörleifsson, the HB Grandi vessels and Thorsteinn ThH, which has been fishing opposite Ingunn, have been fishing on the northern side of this area where the proportion of mackerel in catches is lower.

‘We had practically no mackerel at all towards the end of the trip. Two days ago the herring suddenly started moving quickly eastwards, leaving the mackerel behind. The herring are excellent right now. The fish are fat, with practically no feed in them and just right for processing. The skippers of the factory vessels have been saying that there has been very little feed in the herring for an unusually long time now,’ Arnthór Hjörleifsson said.

According to HB Grandi’s pelagic operations manager Vilhjálmur Vilhjálmsson, they estimate that 17% of the fish now being discharged from Ingunn in Vopnafjördur is mackerel. The total proportion of mackerel in the herring catch can not exceed 12% between 9th of July and the 15th of September. Vilhjálmur Vilhjálmsson said that HB Grandi’s quota situation on herring is excellent and roughly half of the company’s 38,000 tonnes have been caught so far this year.

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