One of the main tasks of MRI is to advice the government on TAC's and sustainable fishing strategies. The advice is based on the following:
Projection of catches and stock sizes
Long term management scheme
An advisory board of scientists scrutinises the assessment work for all the species made by individual scientists of MRI and makes recommendations on TAC�s. The MRI advice for some of the major Icelandic stocks are also reviewed by the Advisory Committee on Fisheries Management (ACFM) of ICES.
In order to make a stock assessment following information is needed:
Samples from the landings (age, length, weight, maturity, sex etc.)
Echo surveys for herring, capelin and oceanic redfish
CPUE for the different fleet categories based on logbooks
Fish is aged by means of otoliths and scales. Based on the total landings and the age composition of the landings the numbers of fish caught from each year class can be estimated. Proportional decline in the numbers landed from year to year for a certain year class is an estimator of the total annual mortality of that yearclass. By subtracting the natural mortality from the total mortality the fishing mortality can be estimated and hence the stock size can be back-calculated by means of different models as LTVPA, ADAPT or TSA.
The development of stock size and catch projections for next coming 2-3 years is based on following information:
Information on recruitment from pre-recruit surveys
Assumed natural mortality (predation)
Long term management
MRI is working on long term management strategy for main the marine stocks. This is in agreement with the United Nations conventions on conservation, sustainability and precautionary approach in the fisheries management. Long term management schemes (catch rules) for cod, capelin and summer spawning herring are already in force.