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Development of methods to better describe social and economic outputs from fishing effort/landings for fishing vessels and allocate these to marine space. This is required to link fishing activity with the social and economic benefit that accrues from it.
Presently the MMO collects and publishes data in relation to commercial fisheries and landings. This data covers:
fishing gear type
port of landing
catch location (ICES rectangle for over 10 metre vessels, ICES area for under 10 metre vessels)
As such, this dataset is detailed and covers all commercial fish landings. Though as noted we do not have complete spatial data on the catches of under 10 metre vessel catches.
Recreational fishing (sea angling) has some limited data collection, though this is not linked to spatial activity information, which is less available than for commercial fishing and is derived from surveys.
There is a requirement to look at methods of improving the linkage between the data available on fish catches and the data available on where fishing activity takes place. This requirement is for further work to improve this linkage, through developing and testing new methods, but also potentially by looking for new sources of data, or making suggestions to improve current ones.