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Catches of fish, crustaceans, molluscs and other aquatic organisms by species and fishing area for EU and associated countries (in live weight equivalent of the landings).
The concepts and definitions used in the compilation of catch statistics are those laid down by the Coordinating Working Party on Fishery Statistics (CWP), of which Eurostat is one of the member organizations. These concepts and definitions have been in force since the late 1950's and are applied uniformly worldwide by the CWP and by the national authorities reporting to its member organizations. Therefore, though the quality of the data varies from country to country (being in many cases a function of the general characteristics of the national fishing industry), there is a high degree of comparability between countries and over time.
The data refer to the catch of freshwater, brackish water and marine species of fish, crustaceans, molluscs and other aquatic animals and plants, killed, caught, trapped or collected for all commercial, industrial, recreational and subsistence purposes.
In view of the importance of recreational fishing regarding some stocks and for certain countries, as well as the difficulty of distinguishing between recreational and subsistence fishing, the data should include the catches from recreational fisheries as well. However, it is recognised that certain countries are unable to supply the data for recreational fisheries.
The catches are expressed in the live weight equivalent of the landings. As such they exclude all quantities caught but not landed (for example: discarded fish, fish consumed on board). The unit used is generally the metric ton. Data for marine mammals (e.g. whales) and certain other animals (e.g. crocodiles) are expressed in the number caught.
The nominal catch data are normally derived from the landed quantities of the fishery products. For this purpose, the landed weight is converted to the live weight equivalent (nominal catch) by the application of factors.
Species: All species for which catches are reported to international organizations are included in the Eurostat's database. They are identified by the internationally assigned three letter identifier (e.g. COD = Atlantic cod, PLE = European plaice) according to the FAO ASFIS (Aquatic Sciences and Fishery Information System) list of Species for Fishery Statistics Purposes.
Fishing areas/regions: The catches are sub-divided by the area in which they occur.
The methodologies vary from country to country depending on the nature of their fishing industries. Basic documentation used in collecting the data from EU fisheries are fishing log-books, landings declarations and sales notes used in the management of catch quota and market management systems within the Common Fisheries Policy. The methodologies used by EEA member countries have been described in the Eurostat publication "Fisheries: The collection and compilation of fish catch and landing statistics in member countries of the European Economic Area". Those used by the New Member States are described in a working document "Fisheries: The collection and compilation of fishery statistics in European Union Candidate Countries"
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