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This review presents information on the status of selected shellfish stocks in Ireland. In addition, data on the fleet (<13 m) and landings for all species of shellfish (excluding Nephrops and mussels) are presented. The intention of this annual review is to present stock assessment and scientific advice for shellfisheries which may be subject to new management proposals or where scientific advice is required in relation to assessing the environmental impact of shellfisheries especially in areas designated under European Directives.
The Stock Book is the principal annual publication of the Marine Institute's Fisheries Ecosystems Advisory Services (FEAS). Its purpose is to provide the latest impartial scientific advice on the commercially exploited fish stocks of interest to Ireland. The Stock Book is used by the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine - (DAFM) at the Total Allowable Catch (TAC) negotiations with the EU in December and throughout the year at fisheries management meetings.
The overall aim of this project was to increase Ireland’s capacity for the generation of integrated monitoring of biological effects and chemical measurement data and for the completion of a pilot scale assessment of the quality of the Irish marine environment at a number of selected locations.
New Connections II (2011-2013) complements its predecessor New Connections (2007-2010) published in 2011, and together they record the success of the Irish marine research community in competitive EU funded programmes such as FP7, INTERREG-IV, LIFE+, COST and the Lifelong Learning Programme. Over the period 2007-2013, 111 Irish marine research groups (including SMEs) participated in 210 marine related EU funded marine projects winning grant aid of over €70m.
This “Atlas of Commercial Fisheries Around Ireland” uses informatics, the science of processing data into information, to give useful new insights into fishing activities and fisheries resources. Fishing is one of the most significant ocean uses in the waters around Ireland with around 1000 vessels active on a daily basis. More than 8 million hours of fishing effort spent annually are mapped by gear and country. Landings statistics are summarised by port. Fishing activities and landings values and volumes within the Irish Exclusive Economic Zone are estimated for 2012. Landings of the key commercial species are mapped individually and by gear. This information is put into context by maps of effort and landings at a broader European scale and by the historical time series of landings that are provided for each species.
This report represents a continuation of the Annual Reports published by the Salmon Research Agency of Ireland, now integrated them into the Fisheries Ecosystem Advisory Services Group (FEAS)of the Marine Institute.The data presented creates a unique record of fish rearing and wild fish census data for the past 43 years. This data is an essential component in the local, regional and national management of salmon, sea trout and eel and is becoming ever more valuable in the light of increasing pressures on natural stocks, such as exploitation, habitat degradation and global climate change scenarios. The fish monitoring facilities in Newport, along with the reared and ranched salmon stocks held in Burrishoole, are also essential for the evaluation of novel enhancement techniques, alternative stocks and ranching and evaluation of interactions between farmed, ranched and wild strains.
The Irish Maritime Development Office (IMDO) of the Marine Institute publishes the Irish Maritime Transport Economist each year to provide a descriptive statistical analysis of the Irish ports and shipping services sector, as well as the many factors influencing its performance.Turning to the performance of the sector in 2013, it is clear that a number of indicators give cause for greater optimism than has been the case in recent years. The volume of trade that moves through Irish ports is a reliable indicator of national economic performance and activity.
Blanket peat catchments are important biodiversity refugia and are increasingly recognised for their role in regional carbon and water balances. A key pressure on these catchments is forest clearfelling which increases stream phosphorus potentially leading to eutrophication. However, these unique systems are underrepresented in the development of bioassessment monitoring programmes and so are at risk to impacts. In this study, a multiple before-after-control-impact (MBACI) study was designed in three neighbouring peatland catchments and provided a unique opportunity to assess the impact of forest clearfelling events on macroinvertebrate and phytobenthic assemblages. Statistical analysis revealed substantial differences in the macroinvertebrate assemblages after clearfelling with higher abundances of chironomids. Macroinvertebrate derived indices EPT, diversity and species richness were significantly reduced. This was accompanied by a shift in functional feeding group representation away from shredders and collector–filterers to a dominance of collector–gatherers after clearfelling. In contrast, forest clearfelling did not significantly impact the diatom assemblages and diatom derived indices remained static for the duration of the study period.
Coordination of the survey was initiated in the meeting of the Working Group on International Pelagic Surveys (WGIPS) and continued by correspondence until the start of the survey. During the survey, updates on vessel positions and trawl activities were collated by the survey coordinator and distributed to the participants twice daily. The survey design used and described in ICES (2014) allowed for a flexible setup of transects and good coverage of the spawning aggregations. Due to acceptable - good weather conditions throughout the survey period, the survey resulted in a high quality coverage of the stock. Transects of all vessels were consistent in spatial coverage and timing, delivering full coverage of the respective distribution areas within 14 days.
Acoustic surveys on blue whiting (Micromesistius poutassou) spawning aggregations in the north east Atlantic have been carried out by the Institute of Marine Research (IMR) Norway since the early 1970s. The 2014 survey was part of an international collaborative survey using the vessels RV Celtic Explorer (Ireland), RV Fridtjof Nansen (Russia), RV Tridens (Netherlands) and the RV Magnus Heinason (Faroes). The total combined area coverage extended from the Faroe Islands in the north (62° N) to south of Ireland (52° N), with east -west extension from 4°-19° W. International survey participants meet shortly after the survey to present data and produce a combined relative abundance stock estimate and report.The combined survey report is presented annually at the WGIPS meeting held in January. The information presented here relates specifically to the Irish survey.