Marine Scotland

New publications from Marine Scotland Science provide new information needed for marine planning and licensing

December 19, 2014 by No Comments | Category Marine Scotland general, Marine Scotland Science, Scottish Marine and Freshwater Science report series

The second of two reports, published today, reports on the activity of inshore fishing boats over a 5 year period. This is the outcome of a major Marine Scotland project: “ScotMap – Mapping fishing activity in Scotland’s inshore waters”.

Fishing vessels over 15m long are fitted with Vessel Monitoring Systems (VMS) providing us with information on where they fish. Smaller vessels, which tend to fish more inshore waters have not been tracked in such a way and there has been little information on areas of Scotland’s seas that are important to this part of the Scottish fishing fleet.

To improve knowledge of the distribution and value of fisheries in inshore waters Marine Scotland carried out a fisheries mapping study known as ScotMap. Data, relating to fishing activity for the period 2007 to 2011, were collected during face-to-face interviews with over 1000 individual vessel owners and operators. Fishermen were asked about their fishing practices, and to identify the areas in which they fished, and quantify these in terms of importance and value. Data were aggregated and analysed to provide information on the value (monetary and relative importance) and usage (number of fishing vessels and crew) of the seas around Scotland.

This report provides a complete overview of the project, methodology, outputs and findings. The mapped outputs from ScotMap were published online in 2013 and can be downloaded from the ScotMap web page.

The data set that has been created is unique in Europe and is already being used to inform marine planning, offshore renewable energy licensing and Marine Protected Area management about the activities of the inshore fisheries sector.

Enquiries: Matt Gubbins


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