Length-optimized cod fishing

Author: Henrik Svedäng, Joakim Hjelm, Michele Casini, Filip Kjäll, Friederike Ziegler, Sara Hornborg, Bengt Gunnarsson, Johan Stål, Staffan Larsson
Year published: 2013

Original title: "Längdoptimerat torskfiske i Östersjön Rapport av fas 1"
Number of pages: 35

Although the stock of cod in the Eastern Baltic Sea is large and is on the so-called Maximum Sustainable Yield (MSY) the cod grows poorly and are both skinny and small. Studies in Phase 1 focused on investigating whether it is possible to get a more equal size composition and quality of growth within the stock by targeting larger individuals when fishing. The result shows that the cod stock completely is dominated by small individuals, which leads to scarcity in prey which in turn affects the growth of the fish. This situation is a result of long time fishing of only the large individuals, but also to the spread of anoxic bottoms in the Baltic Sea seems to have an unexpectedly large impact on the cod. The results means that the project's original idea that the fishermen should help to improve the cod stocks by only catch large individuals probably needs to be revised.

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