Biomass of Antarctic krill in the Scotia Sea in January/February 2000 and its use in revising an estimate of precautionary yield
In January and February 2000, a collaborative survey designed to assess the biomass of Antarctic krill across the Scotia Sea was conducted aboard research vessels from Japan, Russia, the UK and the USA using active acoustic and net sampling. Survey design, sampling protocols, and data analysis procedures are described. Mean krill density across the survey area was estimated to be 21.4 gm(-2), and total biomass was estimated to be 44.3 million tonnes (CV 11.4%). This biomass estimate leads to a revised estimate of precautionary yield for krill in the Scotia Sea of 4 million tonnes. However, before the fishery can be permitted to expand to this level, it will be necessary to establish mechanisms to avoid concentration of fishing effort, particularly near colonies of land-breeding krill predators, and to consider the effects of krill immigrating into the region from multiple sources.