Foreign Vessel Surveys

Ocean View.

A number of foreign marine scientific research programmes (FMSR) are undertaken in Irish waters each year. Summary details of the surveys are available in the table below. 

If you're interested in participating in any of these surveys as the Irish Observer onboard, please see details of our Foreign Vessel Observer Scheme to check that you qualify. 

All observers are required to comply with current Covid-19 safety regulations and protocols on board the relevant vessel. 


 UK CEFAS ENDEAVOUR (C END X/23) Celtic Sea, Bristol Channel and western Channel The aim is to resume the time-series (2018-2020) groundfish survey across the entire Celtic Sea region and western English Channel  Jan 1st  Mar 2nd Observer welcome
UK MRV Scotia ICES Management area VIA Bottom trawl survey targeting juvenile gadoid species. Jan 15th Mar 6th Observer welcome
UK FV Achilles Area Vlla - Irish Sea The objective of this survey is to estimate the distribution, abundance and population structure of cod, haddock and whiting in the Irish Sea by semi-pelagic trawling, using commercial fishing gear. Feb 20th  Mar 25th Observer welcome
UK CEFAS ENDEAVOUR (C END 4/23) Celtic Sea, Bristol Channel and western Channel Ground-fish survey using 4m beam trawls operating as part of the internationally-coordinated Working Group on Beam Trawl Surveys (WGBEAM) for southern and western waters and formed part of a coordinated survey with the Republic of Ireland  Feb 26th  Apr 18th Observer welcome
Netherlands Tridens Western approaches and West of Ireland Estimate the spawning stock abundance of Blue Whiting using acoustic methods. Mar 8th  Apr 13th Observer welcome
Spain Vizconde de Eza South Porcupine Sea Bight up to North British Islands To estimate both the spawning stock biomass and the total biomass at the spawning time of the European blue whiting stock by the echo integration method March 25th  April 7th  Observer welcome


MV Vendla Atlantic Ocean Northwest of Ireland Acoustic assessment of the blue whiting spawning stock Mar 21st Mar 30th  Observer welcome
UK Scotia The Rockall Plateau, NW Slope and NW Ireland To conduct a trawl survey to estimate the abundance and distribution of anglerfish Apr 14th Apr 30th Observer welcome
Norway Fiskebas Atlantic Ocean West of Ireland & Scotland Tagging and biological sampling of mackerel Apr 19th May 16th Observer welcome
Belgium RV Belgica Porcupine Seabight, Southwest of Ireland. This project studies the sedimentary processes linked to the Belgica mound contourite drift and the Gollum channels in the Porcupine Seabight. Jun 7th Jun 24th Observer welcome
UK RRS Discovery Whittard Canyon, the canyon interfluves and canyon heads, Lower Whittard Channel DY166: NMF-MARS Commissioning and Science trials Jun 18th  Jul 5th Observer welcome
UK Cefas Endeavour Irish & Celtic Sea Irish Sea and Bristol Channel Beam trawl survey  Sep 6th  Sep 25th  Observer welcome