The working group on Baltic International Fish Surveys (WGBIFS) of the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES) met at the Thünen Institute of Baltic Sea Fisheries between 30th March and 3rd April 2016.
25 scientists of all Baltic rim countries collated data from last year’s internationally coordinated research cruises to assess the abundance of the commercially exploited fish stocks of the Baltic Sea. Apart from the evaluation of data, standardisation of the surveys, the equipment used and methods as well as the data storage were discussed.
Time series of stock indices for cod, flatfishes (brill, dab, flounder, plaice and turbot) as well as for herring and sprat were prepared and the spatial distribution of the stocks described.
The fisheries independent stock parameters derived from the surveys are used for the stock assessment, along with commercial catch data. The annual assessment forms the basis of ICES’ catch advice for the following year.