Commercial catch data in the RMI EEZ in 2015

"A total of 444,993 tons of tuna was transshipped in Port Majuro in 2015"

HIGHLIGHT

Commercial catch data in the RMI EEZ in 2015

Catch tonnage declined for all three types of commercial fishing gear used in the Matshall Islands' EEZ. The catch was just over 30,000 tons in 2015 compared to over 80,000 tons in 2014. This reflected, in part, tuna migration patters that were affected by the El Niño weather phenomenon.

  • Purse seine vessels:  The total catch by purse seine fleets operating in the Marshall Islands' EEZ was 26,694 tons in 2015, a drop of about 60 percent compared to the 70,235 tons caught in 2014 by purse seiners. The 2015 catch is the lowest since 2011. The US fleet accounted for close to half of this catch, followed by the FSM Arrangement fleet, Taiwan and Marshall islands flagged vessels, Skipjack tuna dominated the catch, accounting for over 80 percent of the total.
  • Longline vessels: Similar to the purse seine catch, tuna caught by longliners declined by nearly 50 percent in 2015 compared to the previous year. The domestically-based foreign longline fleet is comprised of vessels from China, Taiwan and FSM and managed and operated under Marshall Islands Fishing Venture, Ltd., which is a subsidiary of Luen Thai. The tuna off-loaded at the Fishing Venture in Majuro result in exports of chilled tuna species to markets in the US, China and Canada. In contrast, Japanesse longline vessels offload their catch in ports in Japan. The catch in 2015 was estimated at 4,097 tons compared to 7,798 tons in 2014. It is the lowest in over four years. Over half of the catch was bigeye tuna (2,286 tons), while yellowfin (1,380 tons), other (309 tons), and albacore (122 tons) accounted for the balance. The largest portion of the 2015 longline volume was caught by Chinese vessels (2,155 tons), followed by vessels from FSM (1,666 tons), Japan (230 tons) and Taiwan (46 tons).
  • Pole and line vessels:  Catch levels of tuna by pole and line vessels decreased 82 percent compared to the previous year. This is partly the result of a cline from 20 to 13 vessels in the Japanesse pole and line fleet, the only using this type of gear in the Marshall Islands' EEZ. Skipjack tuna accounted for nearly 100 percent of the 618 tons caught in 2015. This was the lowest total tonnage caught since 2011, when 269 tons were reeled in. The Marshall Islands has yet to place observers on board coverage for validation purpose has not been achieved.
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