Marine Institute

Scientific Interpretation and Catch Advice

Salmon jumping

The data which are collected and analysed from the various scientific monitoring programmes are used to provide a detailed profile of catch, stock and survival around the Irish coast. All data generated are used in national and international forums to establish quotas for high seas fisheries and home-water fisheries and produce rational management plans for salmon stocks.

National advice on salmon stocks

Research results are presented to Inland Fisheries Ireland to assist in setting stock conservation targets. All relevant information to base our current assessments is contained in the report "The Status of Irish Salmon Stocks and Precautionary Catch Advice". Further supporting information for every river where information is available is also provided.

The catch advice provided in this report stated that :

Scientific advice is provided in the context of meeting National and International obligations. In this regard the only situation where both can be met is where fisheries take place on stocks that are exceeding Conservation Limits, with the catch being limited to or less than the number of fish in excess of the Conservation Limit.

The Standing Scientific Committee advises the overall exploitation in most districts should immediately decrease, so that Conservation Limits can be consistently met. Furthermore, due to the different status of individual stocks within the stock complex, mixed stock fisheries present particular threats to the status of individual stocks. Thus, the most precautionary way to meet national and international objectives is to operate fisheries on river stocks that are shown to be within precautionary limits i.e. those stocks which are exceeding their Conservation Limits.

New management measures are constantly coming on stream in an effort to maintain stocks at self-sustaining levels.

International advice on salmon stocks

At the end of each season Marine Institute scientists come together with colleagues from the international scientific community to assess their findings at an international Working Group on North Atlantic Salmon under the auspices of the International Council for the Exploration of the Seas (ICES). Participants include scientists from Canada, USA, Russian Federation, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark UK, Iceland, Faroe Islands, Germany and France. Irish data are used in conjunction with data from the other North Atlantic salmon producing nations of the world to assess the status of stocks and measures which are needed to conserve or rebuild stocks. This includes providing specific catch advice for the mixed stocks fisheries of the Faroes Islands and Greenland.

We complete our mission by presenting our advice and the international advice from ICES to the Irish Government, the European Union (EU) and to international bodies such as the North Atlantic Salmon Commission (NASCO).

Other sources of information