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Alfonsino - South East Atlantic
Marine Resource  Fact Sheet
Stock status report 2016
Alfonsino - South East Atlantic
Fact Sheet Citation  
Alfonsino
Owned bySouth East Atlantic Fisheries Organisation (SEAFO) – More
Related observationsLocate in inventorydisplay tree map
 
Species:
FAO Names: en - Splendid alfonsino, fr - Béryx long, es - Alfonsino besugo, ar - عُنقُد طويل, zh - 红金眼鲷
Geographic extent of Alfonsino - South East Atlantic
Main Descriptors
Considered a single stock: No        Spatial Scale: Regional
Management unit: Yes        Reference year: 2015
 
 
Biological State and Trend
State & Trend Descriptors
FIRMS
Exploitation rateUncertain/Not assessed
Abundance levelUncertain/Not assessed
History
 

In recent years the Korean trawl fishery was the only fishery targeting the alfonsino in the SEAFO CA. This fishery finished it activity in 2014. During the period 2010-2013 two fishing vessels participated in the fishery.

Although primarily considered as a midwater trawl fishery, 94% of the tows recorded by onboard observers were classified as “Demersal”. Whether or not these trawls were bottom trawls remains uncertain, and this is an issue that still requires clarification.

The first Korean vessel operated as a stern trawler with the following fishing gears (Table 1):

HAMPIDJAN NET is a bottom otter trawl with two-piece nets of 66 m in length. The head rope is 48 m long; ground rope is 50 m; the height, width and girth of the net are 5.5 m, 30 m and 100 m, respectively. The cod-end mesh size is 120 mm. The ground gear is 50 m in length and 903 kg in weight, and the float is 1,018 kg.

MANUFACTURED NET is a four-piece net with a overall length of 66.9 m. The lengths of the head rope and ground rope are 59.0 m and 77.9 m, respectively. The height, width and girth of the net are 5.5 m, 200 m and 83 m, respectively. The cod-end mesh size is 120 mm. The ground is 77.9 m in length and the weight of the ground is 2,068 kg. The float is 913.200 kg with the floating rate of 44%.

MIDWATER NET is 210 m long. The lengths of head rope and ground ropes are 93.6 m. The height and width of the net are 70.0 m and 240-260 m, respectively. The girth of the net is 816 m and the cod-end mesh size is 120 mm.


Table 1 Fishing gear specifications at vessel 1.
Gear Specifications

HAMPIDJAN NET

bottom trawl

MANUFACTURED NET

bottom trawl

MIDWATER NET
Otter board type VRS-TYPE VRS-TYPE VRS-TYPE
  material Steel Steel Steel
  size (mm) 2,300 x 4,030 2,750 x 4,900 1,854 x 3,818
  weight (kg) 3,930 4,320 2,000
  under water weight (kg) 2,619 2,473 1,145
Trawl Net purpose

bottom fishing

(figure1)

bottom fishing

(figure2)

mid-water fishing

(figure3)

  net length overall(m) 66 66.9 210.0
  head rope (m) 48 59.0 93.6
  ground rope (m) 50 77.9 93.6
  net height (m) 5.5 5.5 70
  net width (m) 30 200 240~260
  net girth (m) 100 83 816
  mesh size (mm) 120 120 120

The second Korean vessel was also stern trawler which operated with two types of fishing gears:

a mid-water trawl net; and the bottom trawl net. The gear used for the operation in the SEAFO Convention Area was the mid-water KITE gear. The height of the net’s gate is approximately 50 m, and the total length is around 280 m. When net is settled, it sinks underwater and the sinking depth of the net is controlled by the wire ropes. The upper and lower parts of the bottom trawl net PE Net have attached plastic buoys and rubber balls respectively. As in the case of KITE gear the wire ropes control the sinking depth of the settled gear.
Habitat and Biology
Climatic zone: Temperate.   Bottom type: Unspecified.   Depth zone: Slope (200 m - 1000 m).   Horizontal distribution: Oceanic.   Vertical distribution: Demersal/Benthic.  


Alfonsino has a global distribution and has been reported from all tropical and temperate oceans (excluding from the northeast Pacific and Mediterranean Sea) between latitudes of about 65° N and 43° S. It occurs from depths of about 25 m to at least 1300 m (Busakhin 1982). In the Atlantic Ocean the species occurs at both at western (Gulf of Maine to the Gulf of Mexico) and eastern Atlantic (off south western Europe and the Canary Islands to South Africa) (Fig. 1). This species is benthopelagic: adults inhabit the outer shelf (180 m) and slope to at least 1,300 m depth, probably moving further from the bottom at night but ascending to feed in midwater during the night; often found over seamounts and underwater ridges. There are no estimates of migration behaviour. The species is oviparous; spawning in batches. Eggs, larvae and juveniles are pelagic.
Figure 1 The distribution of Alfonsino (B. splendens) (source: FishBase).


Geographical Distribution
Jurisdictional distribution: Straddling between High Seas and EEZ


During the period from 2010 to 2011 the Korean trawl vessels caught Alfonsino mainly in the northern part of Division B1and in the southern part in 2012 and 2013 (Fig. 2-5). The three main fishing grounds in Division B1 are shown in these figures.
Figure 2 Annual estimated catch (1.6 tonnes) of Alfonsino in 2013 derived from the Observer Reports aggregated to 100km diameter rectangle.


Figure 3 Annual estimated catch of Alfonsino in 2012 derived from the Observer Reports aggregated to 100km diameter rectangle.


Figure 4 Annual estimated catch of Alfonsino in 2011 derived from the Observer Reports aggregated to 100km diameter hexagonal cells.
Figure 5 Annual estimated catch of Alfonsino in 2010 derived from the Observer Reports aggregated to 100km diameter rectangle hexagonal cells.
Water Area Overview
Spatial Scale: Regional

Geo References
Resource Structure
Considered a single stock: No
Exploitation
 

Table 2 presents Alfonsino catches by country, as well as fishing gear and the divisions in which the catch was taken. Historically, the main fishing countries worked in the SEAFO CA included Russia (bottom trawl) in the late 1970s, Ukraine in the mid-1990s, Russia (bottom trawl), Norway (bottom trawl), Spain (MWT /BLL), Poland and Namibia (bottom trawl) in the late 1990s. In recent years South Korea conducted a trawl fishery for 4 years and the reported landings during 2010 to 2013 were, 198 tonnes, 196 tonnes, 172 tonnes and 1.6 tonnes, respectively. Historically the highest catches of the fish were recorded by Russia with 2,972 and 2,800 tons in 1977 and 1997 respectively, Poland 1,964 tonnes in 1995, and Norway 1,066 tonnes in 1998.


Table 2a Catches (tonnes) of Alfonsino (B. splendens) made by various countries.

Flag State
Namibia Norway Russia Portugal Ukraine Korea
Fishing method Bottom trawl Bottom trawl Bottom trawl Bottom trawl UNK Mid-water trawl
Management Area B1 A1 UNK UNK UNK B1
Catch details (t) Ret. Dis. Ret. Dis. Ret. Dis. Ret. Dis. Ret. Dis. Ret. Dis.
1976         252#              
1977         2972#              
1978         125#              
1993                 172§      
1994                        
1995 1#   N/F N/F                
1996 368#   N/F N/F         747§      
1997 208#   836   2800#       392§      
1998 N/F N/F 1066   69§              
1999 1   N/F N/F     3§          
2000 <1   242       1§          
2001 1   N/F N/F     7§          
2002 0   N/F N/F     1§          
2003 0   N/F N/F     5§          
2004 6   N/F N/F 210              
2005 1   N/F N/F 54              
2006 N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F <1          
2007 N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F
2008 N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F
2009 N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F
2010 N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F 159 0
2011 N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F 165 0
2012 N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F 172 0
2013 N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F 13 0
2014 N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F
2015 N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F
2016* N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F

* Provisional (Oct 2016) N/F = No Fishing. Blank fields = No data available. UNK = Unknown. # = Values taken from the Japp (1999). § = Values from FAO. Ret.= Retained catch. Dis. = Discarded catch


Table 2b Catches (tonnes) of Alfonsino (B. splendens) made by various countries.
Nation Spain Poland Cook Island Mauritius Cyprus South Africa
Fishing method Mid-water trawl and Longlines UNK Bottom trawl Bottom trawl Bottom trawl Bottom trawl
Management Area UNK UNK UNK UNK UNK B1
Catch details (t) Ret. Dis. Ret. Dis. Ret. Dis. Ret. Dis. Ret. Dis. Ret. Dis.
1976                        
1977                        
1978                        
1993                        
1994                        
1995     1964§               60#  
1996                     109#  
1997 186§                   124#  
1998 402§                      
1999                        
2000                        
2001 2                      
2002                        
2003 2                      
2004 4       142   115   437      
2005 72                      
2006 N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F
2007 N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F
2008 N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F
2009 N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F
2010 N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F
2011 N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F
2012 N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F
2013 N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F
2014 N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F
2015 N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F
2016* N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F N/F

* Provisional (Oct 2016) N/F = No Fishing. Blank fields = No data available. UNK = Unknown.# = Values taken from the Japp (1999). § = Values from FAO. Ret.= Retained catch. Dis. = Discarded catch.
Assessment
 

It should be recognized that the data available for assessment is extremely sparse and represents a short time series. The perception of the stock as described is based on only 3 years (2010-2012) of catch and effort data. Catch and effort data for 2013 was not used in the assessment of the nominal CPUE due to an incomplete fishing season. Length frequency distributions could not be derived based on the insufficient length samples submitted to the Secretariat.

Catch and effort data per haul on Alfonsino were collected by Korean vessels for only 4 years from 2010 to 2013, however, only 2011-2012 were used for assessment due to an incomplete fishing season for 2013. These data, although short in series, could be used to get a perception of the trend in nominal CPUE.
Data

The data used to calculate CPUE of Alfonsino were derived from fishing hauls in which the total catch of Beryx splendens represented more than 80% of the total combined catch per set of P. richardsoni and Beryx splendens caught by Korean trawls around the Valdivia Bank. This criterion is used since the catches of these two species are negatively correlated, i.e. when one of these two species occurs in the haul the other is usually very low.

In each haul the estimate of CPUE of Beryx splendens is represented as the ratio of total catch of the species by the haul duration time.
Assessment Model
Type:  Others

Nominal CPUE was used to derive a perception of the development of the fishery in the period 2010-2012.
Assumption

The SC explored the possibility of applying a local depletion model (DeLury, 1947; Leslie and Davis, 1939). It was decided, however, not to pursue this option as the data did not satisfy the assumptions of the method.
Length data and frequency distribution
Data

Using the data collected by Korean trawl fisheries between 2010 and 2013, the length frequency distributions were analysed (Table 3 and Fig. 6). The catch landing data in 2013 were not enough to represent the situation of the southern area of Division B1. The length of Alfonsino in the southern area of Division B1 was the largest with average 26.5 cm and 28.0 cm at the 3rd quartile, with two modes at 22 cm and 27 cm in 2011. In the southern area of Division B1 the length of the fish was also the largest in 2011 and reached about 50 cm fork length. No trend appeared in 2012 (May-June) due to paucity of samples (23 samples). Overall length trends between the areas during 2012-2013 were asymmetric. The length of the species in the northern part was larger than that of southern part in 2012 and 2013.


Table 3 Results of length composition of Alfonsino collected by Korean vessels in SEAFO CA (B1) (2010-2012).
  2010 2011 2012 (5~6) 2012(11) 2013
  South North South North South North South North South North
No. of samples 200 841 174 593 514 23 77 - 97 5
Minimum length 19.0 17.0 20.0 15.0 17.0 26.0 24.0 - 17.0 25.0
Maximum length 42.0 47.0 50.0 48.0 34.0 35.0 39.0 - 31.0 34.0
Average length 25.8 24.8 26.5 27.8 24.8 31.0 31.5 - 23.7 27.4
Median length 25.0 24.0 25.0 28.0 25.0 32.0 32.0 - 22.0 26.0
1stquartile length 23.0 22.0 23.0 25.0 23.0 30.0 29.0 - 21.0 25.0
3rdquartile length 27.0 26.0 28.0 31.0 26.0 32.5 34.0 - 27.0 27.0
Figure 6 Fork length distribution of Alfonsino (Beryx splendens) by depth for 2010-2013.


Table 4 Summary of fork length distribution of Alfonsino (Beryx splendens) by depth for 2010-2013.
  2010 2011 2012(5~6) 2012(11)
  South North South North South North South North
No. of Samples 841 200 174 593 514 23 77 -
Average Depth (m) 210.9 211.1 229.6 238.4 323.8 288.5 248.2 -
Average FL (cm) 25.8 24.8 26.5 27.8 24.8 31.0 31.5 -


Figure 7 The number of individuals of Alfonsino sampled per haul over the period 2010 to 2013 in the SEAFO CA. Data from Observer Reports submitted to SEAFO. N = number of hauls sampled per year; n = total number of individuals sampled.


Table 5 Number of sets by year, minimum and maximum number of individuals per set and the number of individuals sampled during the period 2010 to 2013 in the SEAFO CA.
Year No. of Sets Observed Mean Individuals Min. Individuals Max. Individuals Mean sample size/tonnes
2010 7 17.429 10 25 0.92
2011 7 19.143 5 75 1.36
2012 29 7.345 1 16 0.06
2013 7 3.143 1 7 1.94
Length-weight relationships
Data

Figure 8 shows the length and weight relationship of Alfonsino for 2010-2013. Two parameters of the length-weight relationship were 0.022 for α and 3.010 for β of combined sex of Alfonsino.
Figure 8 Relationship between length and weight of Alfonsino (B. splendens) in the SEAFO CA for 2010 - 2013.
Age data and growth parameters
Assumption

The maximum observed age of Alfonsino in the Guinean Gulf was 20 years. The growth parameters of Alfonsino were estimated as K=0.097 year^-1, Linf=48 cm, and t0=-3.08 year^-1 using the specimens from Guinean Gulf (López-Abellán et al. 2008).
Data

The reproductive parameters of Alfonsino were analysed as follows. Spawning season was evaluated as the period from November to February (Nova Caledonia). Length at 1st maturity was estimated as fork length 39.67 cm for females (95% c.i.=39.34, 40.02 cm) and 36.88 cm for males (95% c.i.=36.45, 37.36 cm) (Flores et al. 2012). Fecundity was calculated as 270,000 – 650,000 eggs (source: FishBase).

The biological productivity of B. splendens is likely to be moderate to low in general (Anonymous, 2007). Alfonsinos are serial spawners and reproduce in the areas that they normally inhabit. Average size at sexual maturity appears to be about 30–34cm (4–6 years old), and can vary between localities (González et al. 2003). The annual numbers and proportion of the fish by gonad maturity stage by Korean trawl fisheries during the period of 2010 - 2013 are presented in Table 6 and Figure 9. Time of spawning also varies markedly between seasons. The proportion of immature fishes was 99.4%, 91.4%, 98.6% and 97.1% in 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013, respectively. The fish, which is in pre-spawning and spawning gonad stages, appeared from October indicating that the spawning season may start from sometime after October. To get more accurate reproduction results of Alfonsino in the SEAFO Area, there is a need to collect data for a few more years.


Table 6 Annual number of fish by maturity stages of Alfonsino (B. splendens) in the SEAFO CA for 2010 to 2013.
Year Month Maturity stage
    Immature Developing Pre-spawning Spawning Spent
2010 Sep 882 66 6 0 0
  Oct 33 6 0 0 0
  Nov 0 20 0 0 0
2011 Jan 95 239 0 0 0
  Sep 37 1 0 0 0
  Oct 18 20 12 0 0
  Nov 26 77 34 2 0
2012 May 16 7 0 0 0
  Jun 452 32 0 0 0
  Nov 29 40 3 5 0
2013 Oct 42 4 0 0 0
  Nov 28 25 3 0 0


Figure 9 The proportion of maturity stage of Alfonsino in the SEAFO CA for 2010-2013. (1:immature, 2: developing, 3: pre-spawning, 4: spawning, and 5: spent)
Results
Reference Point
 

No biological reference points could be determined and the SC suggests using an empirical Harvest Control Rule (HCR) to regulate the fishery until the data situation is improved. A candidate HCR consists of the average catch of the last three years to which a 20% uncertainty cap is applied.

ICES Harvest Control Rules, category 5: Data poor stocks (only landings data). Calculation of average catch for three years (2010- 2012) as

And calculation of the catch advise as
Overall Assessment Results

The progression in CPUE over time showed marked variability and no clear trend as observed in figure 13.
Figure 13 Plot of nominal CPUE for 2010-2012.
Management
Management unit: Yes

Management Advice

There have been no landings of alfonsino in the last 3 years (including 2016). The SC was therefore unable to apply the HCR previously proposed by the SC and accepted by the Commission.

Alfonsino is a seamount-associated species that form aggregations, and the experience worldwide is that serial depletion of aggregations at different seamounts can happen. In the recent fisheries for the species in SEAFO the fishery was concentrated on a single seamount summit, the Valdivia Bank, where it was mainly a bycatch in the target fishery for pelagic armourhead. The only information available from 2015 is the limited observations from the RV Dr Fridtjof Nansen survey noting that only scattered specimens of the species occurred in the main fishing area.

It is also recognized that the last three year’s interruption in the exploitation has provided potential for recovery of the resource in the main fishing area on Valdivia Bank. There is however not enough information from any source to determine with certainty whether recovery has happened or not happened.

The SC however recognised that without future fishery data nor survey information the basis for providing scientific advice will deteriorate. The SC therefore discussed what advisory option would be most appropriate while maintaining the potential for data provision from a fishery. It must also be taken into account that the alfonsino is mainly a bycatch and that the catches will depend on the activity level in the target fishery for armourhead.

The SC considered the TAC level advised in 2013 as precautionary at that time. Considering no fishing pressures last 3 years and development of the resource, The SC recommends a TAC of 200 t (status quo) for the SEAFO CA, of which a maximum of 132 tonnes may be taken in Division B1.
Source of information
 
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