This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government
The Marine Management Organisation (MMO) is providing early notification to the fishing industry that fishing patterns for Western Waters (ICES Area VII) edible and spider crab are ahead of forecasts. This makes an end of year closure more likely in order to ensure that the UK stays within the EC-set effort limits under the Western Waters Regime.
Any potential closure of the area VII crab fishery would affect over 15 metre vessels only.
In July of this year, with agreement with industry representatives, a days at sea limit was adopted for this fishery for the remainder of 2014. However, data shows that on Thursday 30 October 2014 effort uptake in this fishery was at 85 percent, which is ahead of our end of year forecasts. The MMO has notified the fishing industry to enable them to work together on how best to use the remaining effort for this year.
The MMO will continue to monitor effort uptake on a weekly basis and will review the position if:
Industry-representatives successfully negotiate an effort swap with another Member State
Bad weather restricts the current rate of effort uptake in the fishery
The MMO receives fishing activity plans from vessels that indicate some vessels may deviate from current fishing activity patterns
The MMO is working with both the fishing industry and Defra to meet commitments under the Western Waters Regime and avoid incurring penalties from the European Commission.