After the heavy fishing that takes place on blue whiting west of Ireland every spring, with its tight marks and short tows, the character of the fishery changes as the fish migrate northwards through Faroese waters.
This is when fishing for blue whiting is all about long tows and scattered fish – which calls for gear capable of filtering efficiently.
Vónin’s 2600 metre trawl, a scaled-up version of the successful 2300 trawl, has been in use by a number of Faroese vessels this year, with Gøtunes (ex-Gitte Henning), Tróndur í Gøtu and Arctic Voyager all reporting good results, while a fourth Faroese pelagic vessel has also ordered a 2600 trawl.
‘It’s designed with this large opening for fishing blue whiting in the Faroese zone, very different to the spring fishery west of Ireland,’ Vónin’s Frederik Hansen said.
‘This is a big trawl and it’s only marginally heavier to tow than the 2300 gear. With the right rigging, this trawl achieves a fishing circle 270 metre opening horizontally and 135 metres vertically, making it ideal for dispersed fish.’
The 2600 metre trawls in use by the Faroese pelagic vessels are rigged with eight-panel bellies, which give the aft section of the trawl a more even shape, providing a better water flow and opening the meshes more effectively, while also allowing the belly to open more fully during the tow.
‘There’s a growing interest in this trawl after the results that Gøtunes, Tróndur í Gøtu and Arctic Voyager have seen on blue whiting,’ he said.