Based on the newly established analytical assessment for this stock, ICES classifies the arctic Sebastes mentella as in good reproductive capacity and stable. The spawning stock biomass has been steadily increasing since 1992 and the total stock biomass has fluctuated around one million tonnes since 2001. The current fishing mortality is low although there are no estimations for possible IUU (Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated) catches. Due to recruitment failure for year-classes 1996-2003 it is projected that SSB will slightly decline in coming years and return to current levels afterwards. The rate of recovery will depend on the fishing mortality.
ICES advises on the basis of the MSY approach that a commercial fishery can operate on Sebastes mentella in Subareas I and II, given that the total catch level, including bycatches and discards, does not exceed 24 000 tonnes. Measures currently in place to protect juveniles have proven successful and should be maintained.
Recommended TAC 2014: not to exceed 24 000 tonnes
Recommended TAC 2013: not to exceed 47 000 tonnes
NEAFC TAC 2013: 19 500 tonnes
Expected total catch 2013: 24 000 tonnes