Conservationists: British mackerel no longer sustainable fish

Jan 22, 2013
Mackerel on sale in Male, Maldives on October 20, 2007. Mackerel has been struck off a list in Britain of sustainable fish fit for the plate as conversationists warn that overfishing is leading to depleting stocks.

Mackerel has been struck off a list of sustainable fish by British conversationists who warn that overfishing is depleting stocks.

Previously championed as a healthy and ethical option packed with the fatty acid Omega-3, the should now be eaten only occasionally and where possible from local sources, the Marine Conservation Society (MCS) said.

The has removed from its "fish to eat" list, recommending herring and sardine as alternatives.

Mackerel populations in the Atlantic have shifted northwest from Britain towards Iceland and the Faroe Islands, where they are being heavily fished, the group said.

"The stock has moved into Icelandic and Faroese waters, probably following their prey of small fish, and squid," said Bernadette Clarke, fisheries officer at the MCS.

"As a result, both countries have begun to fish more mackerel than was previously agreed.

"The total catch is now far in excess of what has been scientifically recommended and previously agreed upon by all participating countries."

Along with mackerel, gunard has also been taken off the list because of concerns about population levels of the fish, which is traditionally swept up by vessels fishing for other species and is often thrown back into the sea.

Herring, coley and Dover sole from the English Channel, on the other hand, can be eaten with a clear conscience, while whiting from the Celtic Sea off the south coast of Ireland has been given the green light for the first time.

Explore further: Zimbabwe vows to export elephants despite criticism

Related Stories

Harvesting of small fish species should be cut: study

Jul 22, 2011

(PhysOrg.com) -- New research on the fishing of small fish species near the bottom of their food chains suggests harvesting at levels previously thought to be sustainable could have devastating effects on ...

Putting a price on sea fish

Apr 19, 2011

Hakan Eggert's studies from Iceland and the Gullmar fjord on the Swedish west coast, reveal that when commercial fishermen are given fishing rights they voluntarily choose more sustainable fishing methods and earn far more. ...

Recommended for you

Winter proves tough on deer, states weigh hunting limits

9 hours ago

Wildlife regulators in states where deer hunting is a way of life and an important tourism draw are implementing or considering deep cuts to hunting permits after a tough winter killed off many of the animals.

Sea lion strandings: The view from the rookery

13 hours ago

For a few months now, sea lion pups have been stranding on the coast of Southern California. So many have washed up, emaciated and exhausted, that marine mammal care centers can scarcely hold them all. But ...

Securing the supply of sea scallops for today and tomorrow

13 hours ago

Good management has brought the $559 million United States sea scallop fishery back from the brink of collapse over the past 20 years. However, its current fishery management plan does not account for longer-term ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.