Pelagic Fish Resources And Their Fishery Around Qatar
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The existing pelagic fishery around Qatar is relatively smaller than the demersal fishery. Inshore and offshore gillnetting trolling and even bottom trawling, contribute to the production of pelagic fish species. About 30 pelagic species are of commercial significance, but only sardines, king-mackerels and sharks were identified as the main varieties. The sardines are the most abundant pelagic variety but are practically unexploited and large quantities of sharks entering the gillnet fishery are discarded. Though the productions of large and samll pelagic varieties are estimated to be 570 M. tons and 70 M. tons per annum, their maximum potential yields are considered to be in the regions of 2,200 M.tons and 20,000 M.tons, respectively. Around Qatar, the extent of the area with high density of any one pelagic species is less than 50% of the total area of the Qatar waters. The north-east and north coasts are relatively richer areas than the west and south-east coasts. The size ranges of various species entering the fishery and their distribution behaviour, are discussed. High seasonality in the availability of these fish to the fishery is evident, and it appears to be influenced by the seasonal changes in the environmental conditions.