Two research vessels and three commercial fishing vessels are now searching for capelin in Icelandic waters, according to a statement by Minister of Fisheries Kristján Thór Júlíusson.
Research vessel Árni Friðriksson is surveying waters off the Westfjords and Bjarni Sæmundsson is at work on shallower grounds off the north coast.
Commercial fishing vessels Aðalsteinn Jónsson, Ásgrímur Halldórsson and Polar Amaroq are searching waters off the Eastfjords, the north east and offshore northern grounds.
Twenty staff from the Marine Research Institute are at sea with these five vessels, in addition to crews, so around 80 people are directly involved in the capelin survey.
In line with changes to budgetary legislation for 2021, the Institute was awarded an additional ISK120 million for capelin survey work, on the basis of the winter capelin fishery having a significant economic importance.
The Institute has contracted with the operating companies behind the three commercial vessels to take part in the survey during January and February, and the additional funding opens possibilities to carry out survey work with a number of vessels simultaneously so that results can be obtained as quickly as possible when conditions allow.