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Science Response 2023/030

Update of stock status indicators of the Estuary and Gulf of St. Lawrence (Divisions 4RST) capelin stock in 2022


The stock assessment of the Estuary and Gulf of St. Lawrence (EGSL) Atlantic capelin (Mallotus villosus) in Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization (NAFO) Divisions 4RST is carried out every two years and the last assessment took place in April 2022. During this assessment, the available evidence (low approximations of fishing mortality and the composite index describing the status of the stock around the long-term average) indicated that any of the harvest levels attained over the last decade were unlikely to pose a risk to the 4RST capelin stock in 2022. However, the recommendation of a total allowable catch (TAC) for the 2023 fishing season was not possible due to lack of information at the time of the assessment. The next full assessment is scheduled for winter 2024. The Fisheries and Aquaculture Management Branch has requested an update of stock indicators to determine whether any changes have occurred in the status of the resource that would require adjustments to the management plan based on the adopted conservation approach.

This Science Response Report results from the regional peer review on the update of stock status indicators for capelin in the Estuary and Gulf of St. Lawrence (NAFO 4RST) in 2022 held on April 12, 2023.

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