Atlantic Fisheries
Research Document 1996/075

The status of spiny dogfish (Squalus acanthias, L) in the Bay of Fundy, Scotian Shelf and southern Gulf of St. Lawrence (NAFO Divisions 4TVWX) in 1995

By J. McRuer; T. Hurlbut

Abstract

Although spiny dogfish have historically been regarded as nothing more than a nuisance by many inshore fishers, the relatively recent development of markets for dogfish products from North America has resulted in the establishment of directed fisheries in the Northwest Atlantic, including the Southern Gulf of St. Lawrence and the Scotian Shelf.

Research vessel data from surveys of the Scotian Shelf (NAFO Div. 4VWX) suggests an increase in the abundance of spiny dogfish since 1981, whereas data from surveys of the Southern Gulf (NAFO Div. 4T) suggests an increase in abundance since 1987.

Analyses presented during the most recent (1994) assessment of spiny dogfish in the Northwest Atlantic (NAFO Subareas 2-6) indicate that this stock is stable at best and has possibly begun to decline as a result of recent increases in exploitation (U.S. N.M.F.S. N.E.F.S.C. Ref. Doc. 1994).

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