|Opportunity for a fishery for Atlantic Saury (Scomberesox saurus) in the Nova Scotia portion of the southern Gulf of St. Lawrence|
Chaput, G.; Hurlbut, T. (2010). Opportunity for a fishery for Atlantic Saury (Scomberesox saurus) in the Nova Scotia portion of the southern Gulf of St. Lawrence. Fisheries and Oceans Canada: Canada. iv, 41 pp.
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This document presents information on the biology and fisheries of Atlantic saury (Scomberesox Saurus), with emphasis on the southern Gulf of St. Lawrence. It was prepared to address a request for a fishery for Atlantic saury in the Nova Scotia portion of the southern Gulf of St. Lawrence. Information is reviewed in relation to the objectives described in the DFO “POLICY ON NEW FISHERIES FOR FORAGE SPECIES”. There are large knowledge gaps related to the biology, distribution and abundance of Atlantic saury in the southern Gulf of St. Lawrence. Little is known of the role of Atlantic saury in the ecosystem and in particular the importance of Atlantic saury as prey for marine organisms. With the possible exception of the gannets, there is no information at present to identify a predator species which is highly dependent on Atlantic saury. Based on general characteristics of the biology and ecology of Atlantic saury, it qualifies as a forage species under the definition of the policy. At present, there is no directed commercial fishery for Atlantic saury in Canadian Atlantic waters. The lack of information on stock structure and abundance precludes the derivation of reference points and assessment indicators against which to evaluate fisheries exploitation. As such, the biological and management prerequisites defined by the policy which would be required in order for fisheries on forage species to take place cannot be met. Properly collected information which could be obtained during exploratory fisheries would improve the knowledge of Atlantic saury and would benefit the development of a long-term management plan.