The 2018 Capelin Stock Assessment Technical Briefing for 2J3KL was held by DFO today, March 12.
DFO indicated the biomass of 2J3KL capelin is primarily environmentally-driven. Fisheries removals are an exceptionally small proportion of total removals. Additionally, DFO indicated that predation removals are on the order of a million tonnes annually, making removals from the commercial fishery a drop in the total removals bucket.
While the fishery is focussed on spawning capelin, so too is the bulk of capelin predation. Seabirds, whales and cod migrate to inshore Newfoundland and Labrador to feed on spawning capelin.
Signs from the capelin assessment technical briefing were not encouraging for the 2018 fishery. However, given the small size of capelin removals, there is no indication that reductions to the fishery will affect the capelin stock trajectory.
The technical briefing by DFO Science on the 2018 Capelin Stock Assessment for 2J3KL is available to read here.