Sustainable shrimp fishery in Skagerrak (38994)

Project Details


The main objective of the Norwegian-Swedish-Danish research project "Sustainable shrimp fishery in the Skagerrak" was to clarify whether there are one or more shrimp stocks in the Skagerrak. The management of shrimp fishing in the Skagerrak and Norwegian Deep 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 was answered by collecting and genetically analyzing several thousand shrimp from Skagerrak and northern Kattegat, Norwegian Channel and the Norwegian fjords. The analyzed shrimps came both from research cruises and commercial fisheries. The kinship of the collected shrimp was examined with modern DNA technique and the results compared with existing knowledge of the biology of the species. This knowledge was obtained from scientific sources as well as from the fishing industry in terms of skipper interviews.

The genetic analyses revealed that shrimps in Skagerrak and Norwegian Deep all belong to the same stock, but also that some of the fjord-populations are genetically distinct (can be considered separate stocks). These results are published in ICES Journal of Marine Science in 2015.

The fisher information collected in the project was not only focused on shrimp biology but also addressed economical and technical aspects of the shrimp fishery. In this way, scientists have gained an understanding of both how shrimp populations are structured and distributed in the Skagerrak and of the economic importance. The exchange of knowledge between researchers and fishers was an important aspect of the project and was facilitated by regular meetings and interview schemes in all three countries.
Another primary objective of the project was to improve the current assessment of the Skagerrak shrimp stock by developing a new length-based analytical model. DTU Aqua was in charge of this part of the project and in an assessment benchmark in 2012 the developed model was accepted.

The project was coordinated by Institute for Marine Research, Norway and funded by EU, InterReg (regional collaboration).

Research area: Fisheries Management
Research area: Marine Living Resources
Effective start/end date01/01/201031/12/2013