Fishing for euros: how mapping applications can assist in maintaining revenues under the Landing Obligation

Julia Calderwood*, Kristian Schreiber Plet-Hansen, Clara Ulrich, David G. Reid

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

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With the introduction of the Landing Obligation (LO) in EU fisheries, there is an increasing need for fishers to avoid unwanted catches while maximizing revenues. Improving understanding of the spatio-temporal dynamics of unwanted catches could assist the fishing industry optimize catches by altering where they fish. How following such advice relates to revenues and fishery dynamics requires more consideration. We take an existing hotspot mapping methodology and examine how it could be used to identify fishing opportunities under the LO in Irish (Celtic Sea) and Danish (North Sea and Skagerrak) demersal fisheries. We consider if fishing effort can be relocated to avoid unwanted catches while maintaining revenues. The value per unit effort of fishing activity in both areas was often linked to high catch rates of key demersal species (cod, haddock, hake, and whiting). Our analyses indicated, however, that there are options to fish in areas that could provide higher revenues while avoiding below minimum conservation reference size catches and choke species. This was evident across both case study areas demonstrating that hotspot mapping tools could have wide applicability. There does, however, remain a need to explore how the displacement of vessels may further alter species distributions and fleet economics.
Original languageEnglish
Article numberfsaa116
JournalICES Journal of Marine Science
Issue number7-8
Pages (from-to)2567-2581
Number of pages15
Publication statusPublished - 2020


  • Discards
  • Economics
  • Fishing tactics
  • Hotspot maps
  • Landing obligation
  • Spatial avoidance


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