The latest in the Series of ICES Survey Protocols (SISP, no. 11), the document was compiled by members of the Working Group on International Deep Pelagic Ecosystem Surveys (WGIDEEPS) and describes the survey conducted in the Irminger Sea and adjacent waters. It looks back at the history of the survey, paying special attention to the current practices and procedures that are in place – such as trawl gears and acoustic equipment, area coverage, sampling methods and data collected.
WGIDEEPS is the expert group responsible for coordinating international trawl-acoustic surveys on pelagic beaked redfish in the respective areas. Formerly known as the Working Group on Redfish Surveys (WGRS), their name change reflects the fact that the survey has moved from being an exclusively redfish one to an ecosystem one.
Pelagic beaked redfish have been surveyed since 1982 in the Irminger Sea and 2007 in the Norwegian Sea, carried out either by individual nations or collaboratively. The area coverage and methodology, however, have varied, and often the area coverage has been limited. The surveys are predominantly hydroacoustic, although pelagic trawling has been used to estimate redfish biomass where acoustics aren’t possible.