External Organisations

  • Institute of Marine Research, Norway
  • University of Gothenburg, Sweden
  • Lund University, Sweden
  • Directorate of Fisheries, Norway
  • Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Fisheries, Denmark
  • Danish Fishermen's Association, Denmark
  • Norwegian Fishermen’s Association, Norway

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The main objective of the Norwegian-Swedish-Danish research project "Sustainable shrimp fishery in the Skagerrak" is to clarify whether there are one or more shrimp stocks in the Skagerrak.

The current management of shrimp fishing in the Skagerrak and Norwegian Channel is based on the perception of the shrimp resource as one large population. However, biological differences between shrimps (e.g. the size at sex change) indicate that there may be several stocks in the area.

The question of one or more stocks will be answered by collecting and genetically analyzing several thousand shrimp from Skagerrak and northern Kattegat, Norwegian Channel and the Norwegian fjords. The shrimps come both from research cruises and commercial fisheries. The kinship of the collected shrimp is examined with modern DNA technique and the results compared with existing knowledge of the biology of the species. This knowledge is obtained from scientific sources as well as from the fishing industry in terms of skipper interviews.

The first indicative genetic results from the project can be expected in the autumn 2011, but it will take two years before there has been analyzed enough shrimp to say whether there are one or more stocks in the Skagerrak. The fisher information collected in the project is not only focused on shrimp biology but also addresses economical and technical aspects of the shrimp fishery. In this way, scientists will gain an understanding of both how shrimp populations are structured in the Skagerrak and of the economic importance of individual stocks - if in fact there are several stocks.

The exchange of knowledge between researchers and fishers is an important aspect of the project and is facilitated by regular meetings and interview schemes in all three countries.

Another primary objective of the project is to improve the current assessment of the Skagerrak shrimp stock by developing a new length-based analytical model. DTU Aqua is in charge of this part of the project and the goal is to have such a model implemented in the standard ICES assessment. A prototype model is going to be presented this year (2011) at NAFO-ICES assessment meeting in October in Halifax, Canada, and a final model is going to be part of a benchmark exercise for this ICES stock assessment in 2012.

The project is coordinated by Institute for Marine Research, Norway.


  • Research areas: Fisheries Management & Marine Living Resources
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ID: 2289819