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Research Document - 2004/079

Atlantic mackerel (Scomber scombrus L.) fishery and biology in NAFO Subareas 3 and 4 in 2003

By Grégoire, F., Lévesque, C., Guérin, J.,
Hudon J., Lavers, J.


In 2003, landings of Atlantic mackerel (Scomber scombrus L.) in the northwest Atlantic totalled 65,512 t, up to 3,372 t from 2002. In eastern Canada, 34,413 t were landed, a submit since 1960, including 26,295 t in Newfoundland only. The most important catches of this province were realized in unit areas 4Rb, 4Rc, and 4Rd. The other important unit areas were 4Tf and 4Xm, located respectively in the Magdalen Islands and close to Halifax, Nova Scotia. The catch at age associated to the 2003 Canadian landings was characterized by a very large number of fish 4 years old, from the 1999 year-class. At ages 1 to 4 years old, the fish in this year-class accounted for
63 %, 68 %, 77 %, and 75 % of the total catch (in numbers) made between 2000 and 2003. Such values have never been observed in the year-classes that have dominated the fishery since the late 1960s.

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