Ecosystem overviews

Barents Sea Ecoregion

Pressure: Abrasion

Vessel monitoring system (VMS)-based maps show that the most widespread gears used in the central Barents Sea are bottom trawl and lines (Figures 4–6). Bottom trawling produces abrasion on the seafloor.

​Using VMS and logbook data it has been estimated that mobile bottom trawling techniques used by commercial fisheries in the 12 m+ vessel category have been deployed over approximately 91 010 km2 of the Barents Sea in 2018, corresponding to ca. 4.3% of the ecoregion's spatial extent (Figure 6). This figure excludes Russian fishing effort. The pressure is mainly concentrated close to the coastline and in the central Barents Sea.

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 Figure 4: Location of Russian fishing activity in all waters, and of non-Russian fishing activity within the Russian EEZ in 2014 as reported (VMS) to Russian authorities. Click image to enlarge. 

Figure 5: Location of Norwegian fishing activity in all waters, and non-Norwegian fishing activity within the Norwegian EEZ as reported (VMS) to Norwegian authorities. Click image to enlarge.


Figure 6: Surface and subsurface abrasion pressure expressed as the swept-area ratio from VMS data from 2014-2017 in the Barents Sea ICES ecoregion. Russian fishing effort is not included (ICES, 2019).

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Barents Sea Ecoregion

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