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Pollachius pollachius 

Scope: Global & Europe
Language: English
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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Actinopterygii Gadiformes Gadidae

Scientific Name: Pollachius pollachius (Linnaeus, 1758)
Common Name(s):
English Pollack, Callagh, Coalfish, Dover Hake, European Pollock, Grass Whiting, Greenfish, Green Pollack, Lythe, Margate Hake
French Colin, Lieu Jaune, Merlan, Merluche Blanche
Spanish Abadejo, Abadexo, Abadira, Badexo, Barriao, Barrionda, Ferrete
Synonym(s):
Gadus pollachius Linnaeus, 1758

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2014
Date Assessed: 2013-10-16
Assessor(s): Cook, R., Fernandes, P., Florin, A., Lorance, P. & Nedreaas, K.
Reviewer(s): Ralph, G.
Justification:
Pollachius pollachius is found in the northeastern Atlantic, from Norway, the Faroes and Iceland to the Bay of Biscay. There is no consensus on stock identity within the northeastern Atlantic, and this species is considered a data-limited stock throughout its range (no defined reference points, no biomass info, genetic structure not aligned with management units). Aggregated landings for this species in the Northeastern Atlantic Fishing Region have declined by almost 30% over the past 20 years (or three generation lengths), which may be a reflection of reduced fishing mortality. This is an important recreational species and there have been recorded declines in maximum body size consistently with abundance over the last century. Trawl survey data throughout the region are variable, with no clear trends except for in the Skagerrak and Kattegat region, where there have been declines of 80% in catch rates over the past 30 years, although this is a very small portion of its distribution. However, in the North Sea, which is considered the majority of the range, data indicate stable but variable population trends. It is listed as Least Concern. However, there is concern over populations in Skagerrak and Kattegat, as trawl survey data and estimates of biomass show a drastic decline over the past 30 years.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:Pollachius pollachius is restricted to the eastern Atlantic Ocean, where it is found from Norway, the Faroe Islands and Iceland south to the Bay of Biscay. It is found at depths of up to 200 metres (Cohen et al. 1990).
Countries occurrence:
Native:
Belgium; Denmark; Estonia; Faroe Islands; France (France (mainland)); Germany; Guernsey; Iceland; Ireland; Jersey; Latvia; Lithuania; Netherlands; Norway; Poland; Russian Federation (European Russia, Kaliningrad); Spain (Spain (mainland)); Sweden; United Kingdom (Great Britain, Northern Ireland)
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Native:
Atlantic – northeast
Additional data:
Lower depth limit (metres):200
Upper depth limit (metres):1
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:This species is restricted to the northeast Atlantic with its primary distribution from Biscay northwards around the British Isles, in Skagerrak and along the Norwegian coast where it is fairly common up to the Lofoten Islands. It is rare at Faroe and Iceland and in the Baltic. Landings data suggest two distinct centres of distribution: one in the northern North Sea/Skagerrak extending into the Eastern Channel, the Celtic Sea, the Irish Sea and the northern part of the French west coast (ICES 2011).

There is no consensus on stock identity within the northeastern Atlantic and this species is considered a data-limited stock throughout its range (no defined reference points, no biomass info, genetic structure not aligned with management units). Global FAO reported aggregated landings from the Northeastern Atlantic Fishing Region peaked in the mid 1970s at roughly 18,000 tonnes and have since gradually declined to current levels below 10,000 tonnes (FAO 2011 FishstatJ database searched February 2014). Reported landings to FAO have declined about 30% over the past 20 years from about 14,000 tonnes in 1992 to about 10,000 tonnes in 2011, which may be a reflection of reduced fishing mortality. This is an important recreational species but there is not directed fishery. Trawl survey data throughout the region are variable, with no clear trends except for in the Skagerrak and Kattegat region, where there are declines of 80% in catch rates over the past 30 years, although this is a very small portion of its distribution. However, in the North Sea, which is considered the majority of the range, it is thought to have stable but variable population trends.

An investigation of the population genetic structure of this species along the European Coast found weak but significant genetic differentiation between samples originating from the western English Channel and the Bay of Biscay (Charrier et al. 2006). In a 2009 review of molecular population genetic studies, no mismatches were found between genetic structure and management units in this species (Reiss et al. 2009). However this is based on a review of one paper. Along the Norwegian Skagerrak coast, the abundance of this species exhibits periodic fluctuations of 2.0 to 2.5 years (Fromentin et al. 1997). 









Current Population Trend:Unknown
Additional data:

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:Pollachius pollachius is a bentho-pelagic species which is mostly found close to the shore over hard bottoms. It usually occurs at 40 to 100 m. depth, but is found down to depths of 200 metres. The tendency of this species to remain close to rocky shores, hard bottoms or wrecks make it difficult to catch with trawls and poorly suited for monitoring by research surveys (Charrier et al. 2006, ICES 2013). It is a major predator of juvenile Atlantic Cod, Gadus morhua (Salvanes et al. 1995). This species has a maximum length of 130 cm and a maximum published weight of 18.1 kg. However, this species has shown declines of maximum body size consistently with abundance over the last century (Genner et al. 2010).

Pollack tend to be solitary except during the spawning period, when they form aggregations which are sometimes targeted for fishing. Growth is rapid, approaching 10 cm per year. Age at first maturity is roughly three years and maximum age is roughly eight years (Cohen 1990). However, this species may be longer lived, similar to Pollachius virens, and have a maximum age of 15 years (ICES WGNEW 2012). A generation length of 4.3 years was used to assess this species by HELCOM (HELCOM 2013), and a generation length of seven years was used in the Swedish National Red List. Generation length is therefore estimated to range between four to seven years.
Systems:Marine
Generation Length (years):4-7

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: This is species is caught primarily in recreational fisheries. It is caught with bottom and pelagic trawls, longlines, and gillnets (Cohen et al. 1990). This species is aquacultured by Chile and Spain (Kjesbu et al. 2006).

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): This species is mainly caught as bycatch in mixed species fisheries. There is no targeted fishery for this species, other than a recreational fishery. This species may experience recruitment failure in some regions due to eutrophication (Johannessen et al. 2012).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: This is a managed species with Total Allowable Catch limits. However, all stocks are considered data-poor and lack reference points. It is listed as Least Concern in the Norwegian Red List, and Critically Endangered in the Swedish Red List (based on an 80% decline in individuals over the past 20 years, and a generation length of seven years). As there is no confirmed reproduction in the Baltic Sea, and it is estimated that less than 2% of the population occurs there, this species was Not Applicable for Assessment in the Baltic Sea (HELCOM 2013).

Citation: Cook, R., Fernandes, P., Florin, A., Lorance, P. & Nedreaas, K. 2014. Pollachius pollachius. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2014: e.T18125103A45098355. . Downloaded on 17 August 2018.
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