Víkingur is expected to dock in Vopnafjörður at around midday on Wednesday with approximately 2600 tonnes of blue whiting on board. This is its first trip of the year on blue whiting west of Ireland, where a number of Icelandic, Faroese and Russian pelagic vessels are at work in international waters.
‘We sailed from Reykjavík on the 11th of March and started fishing on the 14th. It’s a long way to steam, 660 nautical miles from Reykjavík to the fishing grounds,’ Víkingur’s skipper Albert Sveinsson said, commenting that the fishery got off to a good start.
‘We had 1100 tonnes in the first 24 hours, and things slowed right down after that,’ he said, commenting that catch rates dropped as the blue whiting appeared to make their way eastwards into Irish waters.
‘I decided to move further north to where there had been good fishing, although that was also slowing down. In the next couple of tows we had 150 and 180 tonnes, and as we finished fishing we had 30 tonnes for a 13-hour tow,’ Albert Sveinsson said. He reported that the skippers fishing in international waters all agreed that the blue whiting appeared to be shifting eastwards rather than northwards towards the Faroese EEZ.
‘When we left the fishing grounds, there was some searching going on for blue whiting further south, and hopefully they’ll find some,’ he said, and added that the blue whiting caught in the trip is large, good quality fish and excellent raw material.