Long time I haven’t updated the blog, although I prepared some posts earlier but the upload was not working properly the last days…
I want to start off this post with a picture showing you how rough the sea is at this moment (two days ago, it is still rather calm but a little more gray is covering the sky…) before recapitulating what has happened since my last post…
Weekend in GalwayLast weekend I think everybody accepted the opportunity and went on shore, before leaving for another 3 weeks at sea. After having spent the weekend in Galway and/or its surroundings with truly great weather, we are back on track since the departure on Monday morning.
On Tuesday evening we made our first haul. It turned out to be more then expected, we thought it would be a very small catch, but it turned out to be a 3 ton, more or less pure blue whiting trawl (with a few hakes and silver smelts in it as it can be expected when you fish close to the bottom)
On Wednesday morning we did our second trawl and this time we were rather sure it would be blue whiting which turned out to be true. We caught 4 tons of blue whiting, again with some hake and a few squids, which is to be expected as long as we fish so close to the bottom, as it can be seen on the echogram below. Good news for Joe, this haul even contained two mesopelagic species…
Third TrawlLater in the evening, we shot the net for the third time on what you can see on the echogram below. It were the first schools to occur at the normal blue whiting depth around 400, 500 m in rather deep waters >1000m. When we took in the haul we though only found very little blue whiting, some oarfishes and loads of mesopelagics. To my opinion though this only means that we missed the blue whiting, not that there was none.
Fourth TrawlTo make sure my assumption was tight we went on with another trawl a couple of hours later on a similar acoustic marking, this time the catch was more or less pure blue whiting, still mixed with a few rather big oarfishes (biggest one approx. 1.40 m) and few mesopelagics.
Yesterday we did our 5th trawl on a rather clear blue whiting note on the echogram. We caught a total of approximately6 tons pure blue whiting.
The further north we go, the clearer, the more typical and the more dense the acoustic detections of blue whiting appear. So we expect more fish to come in the next couple of days.
Further we adjusted our cruise track slightly, to get a better overlap with the other vessels, being a little bit ahead of us, taking a little shortcut to the North.
Today we had to make a little detour towards Killybegs and drop a member of the crew due to unfortunate personal circumstances.
We will probably be back on our track around 9ish tonight. The pictures below show our modified cruise track and the position of Tridens as well as the other participating vessels at 9:00 GMT this morning.