Canada is required to account for all fishing mortality of Georges Bank cod (Gadus morhua) and one aim is to reduce the bycatch in the offshore scallop fishery. In order to reduce bycatch and to minimize disturbance to spawning aggregations of cod by the offshore scallop fishery on Georges Bank, DFO has implemented time-area closures since 2005. To inform resource managers in determining appropriate area closures for the offshore scallop fishery on Georges Bank during the cod spawning seasons, Fisheries and Aquaculture Management (FAM) asked the following question. “What does a review of 5Z cod distribution, particularly at spawning time, reveal about the spatial and temporal trends of the species and its overlap with the offshore scallop fishery? Highlight areas of high 5Z cod distribution using the cells which have already been defined and used in previous years.” This document provides the requested information on the spatial distribution of cod abundance and its overlap with scallop catches on Georges Bank. The information provided in this document is an update of information provided annually since 2006.
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