Illustration of Sole

Sole

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Seafood Variety

Harvest Method

Regions

Ocean Wise Recommended

Ocean Wise

Variety

Flathead sole

Hippoglossoides elassodon

Method

Wild

Bottom trawl

Location

Alaska

Overall Rating

3.5 / 5

Summary

Groundfish in Alaska are caught as part of a multi-species fishery. Out of the 43 species/gear combinations, only 1 was found to be unsustainable: shortspine thornyhead caught by bottom trawl. This species is covered in a separate report. Alaskan groundfish are exported worldwide.

Management of a multi-species fishery can be challenging. However in this case, management is excellent as regular stock-assessments are performed with up-to-date assessments available, and regulations exist regarding biological reference points, harvest control rules, and incorporation of uncertainty when determining catch limits. Much information is available on stock status, and data indicates that populations are healthy. The groundfish are fished at a sustainable rate.

Some non-targeted species caught in the Alaskan groundfish fishery include: steller sea lions, giant grenadiers, killer whales, starry flounders, tanner crabs, snow crabs, Pacific sleeper sharks, longnose skates, spiny dogfish, northern fulmar, atka mackerel, sharpchin rockfish, harlequin rockfish, black-footed albatross, laysan albatross, and Pacific halibut. Amongst these species include those whose stock status is of concern, whose inherent vulnerability to fishing pressure is high, or whose fishing mortality rates are high.

Bottom trawls have the potential to cause large amounts of habitat damage due to the fact that they drag across the ocean floor. Although longlines, pots, and jigs are immobile gear types, they nevertheless make contact with the ocean floor and have the potential to cause damage. In order to mitigate these impacts, a number of regulations including spatial restrictions are in place.

Learn more about harvest methods

Ocean Wise Recommended

Ocean Wise

Variety

Petrale sole

Eopsetta jordani

Method

Wild

Bottom trawl

Location

British Columbia

Overall Rating

2.8 / 5

Summary

Petrale sole and English sole are caught as part of a multi-species groundfish fishery in British Columbia. In 2012, BC landed $104.2 million worth of non-hake groundfish. A large proportion of the groundfish are exported to countries including the US, Japan, the UK and Russia.

Management of BC groundfish is moderately effective as management measures such as reference points and harvest control rules exist. However these measures are not applied to all stocks, and are not always supported by scientific research. The Committee on the Status Of Endangered Wildlife In Canada (COSEWIC) has identified several groundfish of threatened status, although recovery of these species is challenging given limited data. Fisheries officers are highly effective in enforcing management regulations such as total allowable catch. Vessels are monitored with 100% at-sea, 100% dockside and 100% observer coverage. English sole and petrale sole are moderately vulnerable to fishing pressure. The populations of both species are at healthy levels, and are fished at a sustainable rate. In 2012, 758 tonnes of petrale sole were landed.

Non-targeted species caught in the BC groundfish fishery include: bocaccio rockfish, green sturgeon, redstripe rockfish, soupfin shark, sharpchin rockfish, splitnose rockfish, spotted rackfish, sixgill shark, steller sea lion, Pacific halibut, giant grenadier, Pacific grenadier and flathead sole. Amongst these species include those whose stock status is of concern, whose inherent vulnerability to fishing pressure is high, or whose fishing mortality rates are high.

Bottom trawls have the potential to cause large amounts of habitat damage due to the fact that they drag across the ocean floor. Many of the species targeted by the BC groundfish fishery are found in areas of hard substrate which are more susceptible to damage than areas of soft substrate. In order to mitigate habitat damage, a number of regulations including spatial regulations are in place. For example, no commercial fishing activities are allowed in Rockfish Conservation Areas. In 2012, additional measures were imposed in order to protect corals and sponges.

Learn more about harvest methods

Ocean Wise Recommended

Ocean Wise

Variety

English sole

Parophrys vetulus

Method

Wild

Bottom trawl

Location

Washington, Oregon, California

Overall Rating

3.5 / 5

Summary

Groundfish in the US are caught as part of a multi-species fishery. Out of the 56 species/gear combinations, only 3 were found to be unsustainable: Kelp greenling from Oregon caught by handline, black and yellow rockfish from California caught by handline, and grass rockfish from California caught by handline. These species are covered in separate reports. Rockfish landings reached historically low levels in the early 2000’s. Recently, management has rebuilt the overfished stocks and 6 stocks are classified as rebuilding. In 2009, the value of the fishery was $66.1 million. Pacific cod caught in the US are sold locally. Rockfish are distributed throughout the west coast, and sablefish are mostly exported to Japan.

Management of a multi-species fishery can be challenging. However in this case, management is strong, as regular stock-assessments are performed, and regulations exist regarding biological reference points, harvest control rules, and incorporation of uncertainty when determining catch limits. In 2011, individual fishing quotas (IFQs) were established which requires 100% at-sea and dockside monitoring. Recent improvements in information availability on groundfish stocks have shown a general trend of increasing abundance and rebuilding stocks.

Some non-targeted species caught in the US Groundfish fishery include: Bocaccio rockfish, yelloweye rockfish, greenstriped rockfish, cowcod rockfish, spotted ratfish, darkblotched rockfish, shortbelly rockfish, splitnose rockfish, yellowtail rockfish, California sheephead, China rockfish, giant grenadier, black-footed albatross, big skate and California skate. Amongst these species include those whose stock status is of concern, whose inherent vulnerability to fishing pressure is high, or whose fishing mortality rates are high.

Bottom trawls have the potential to cause large amounts of habitat damage due to the fact that they drag across the ocean floor. In order to mitigate these impacts, a number of regulations including spatial restrictions are in place. For example, groundfish bottom trawling is prohibited in 25% of Essential Fish Habitat in waters shallower than 700 fathoms. The targeted groundfish are not classified as species of exceptional ecological importance, and a fishery ecosystem plan is currently being developed for the fishery.

Learn more about harvest methods

Ocean Wise Recommended

Ocean Wise

Variety

Yellowfin sole

Pleuronectes asper aka Limanda aspera

Method

Wild

Bottom trawl

Location

Alaska

Overall Rating

3.5 / 5

Summary

Groundfish in Alaska are caught as part of a multi-species fishery. Out of the 43 species/gear combinations, only 1 was found to be unsustainable: shortspine thornyhead caught by bottom trawl. This species is covered in a separate report. Alaskan groundfish are exported worldwide.

Management of a multi-species fishery can be challenging. However in this case, management is excellent as regular stock-assessments are performed with up-to-date assessments available, and regulations exist regarding biological reference points, harvest control rules, and incorporation of uncertainty when determining catch limits. Much information is available on stock status, and data indicates that populations are healthy. The groundfish are fished at a sustainable rate.

Some non-targeted species caught in the Alaskan groundfish fishery include: steller sea lions, giant grenadiers, killer whales, starry flounders, tanner crabs, snow crabs, Pacific sleeper sharks, longnose skates, spiny dogfish, northern fulmar, atka mackerel, sharpchin rockfish, harlequin rockfish, black-footed albatross, laysan albatross, and Pacific halibut. Amongst these species include those whose stock status is of concern, whose inherent vulnerability to fishing pressure is high, or whose fishing mortality rates are high.

Bottom trawls have the potential to cause large amounts of habitat damage due to the fact that they drag across the ocean floor. Although longlines, pots, and jigs are immobile gear types, they nevertheless make contact with the ocean floor and have the potential to cause damage. In order to mitigate these impacts, a number of regulations including spatial restrictions are in place.

Learn more about harvest methods

Ocean Wise Recommended

Ocean Wise

Variety

Rex sole

Glyptocephalus zachirus

Method

Wild

Bottom trawl

Location

California, Alaska

Overall Rating

3.3 - 3.5 / 5

Summary

Groundfish in Alaska are caught as part of a multi-species fishery. Out of the 43 species/gear combinations, only 1 was found to be unsustainable: shortspine thornyhead caught by bottom trawl. This species is covered in a separate report. Alaskan groundfish are exported worldwide.

Management of a multi-species fishery can be challenging. However in this case, management is excellent as regular stock-assessments are performed with up-to-date assessments available, and regulations exist regarding biological reference points, harvest control rules, and incorporation of uncertainty when determining catch limits. Much information is available on stock status, and data indicates that populations are healthy. The groundfish are fished at a sustainable rate.

Some non-targeted species caught in the Alaskan groundfish fishery include: steller sea lions, giant grenadiers, killer whales, starry flounders, tanner crabs, snow crabs, Pacific sleeper sharks, longnose skates, spiny dogfish, northern fulmar, atka mackerel, sharpchin rockfish, harlequin rockfish, black-footed albatross, laysan albatross, and Pacific halibut. Amongst these species include those whose stock status is of concern, whose inherent vulnerability to fishing pressure is high, or whose fishing mortality rates are high.

Bottom trawls have the potential to cause large amounts of habitat damage due to the fact that they drag across the ocean floor. Although longlines, pots, and jigs are immobile gear types, they nevertheless make contact with the ocean floor and have the potential to cause damage. In order to mitigate these impacts, a number of regulations including spatial restrictions are in place.

Learn more about harvest methods

Ocean Wise Recommended

Ocean Wise

Variety

Rock sole

Lepidopsetta bilineata

Method

Wild

Bottom trawl

Location

Alaska

Overall Rating

3.6 / 5

Summary

Groundfish in Alaska are caught as part of a multi-species fishery. Out of the 43 species/gear combinations, only 1 was found to be unsustainable: shortspine thornyhead caught by bottom trawl. This species is covered in a separate report. Alaskan groundfish are exported worldwide.

Management of a multi-species fishery can be challenging. However in this case, management is excellent as regular stock-assessments are performed with up-to-date assessments available, and regulations exist regarding biological reference points, harvest control rules, and incorporation of uncertainty when determining catch limits. Much information is available on stock status, and data indicates that populations are healthy. The groundfish are fished at a sustainable rate.

Some non-targeted species caught in the Alaskan groundfish fishery include: steller sea lions, giant grenadiers, killer whales, starry flounders, tanner crabs, snow crabs, Pacific sleeper sharks, longnose skates, spiny dogfish, northern fulmar, atka mackerel, sharpchin rockfish, harlequin rockfish, black-footed albatross, laysan albatross, and Pacific halibut. Amongst these species include those whose stock status is of concern, whose inherent vulnerability to fishing pressure is high, or whose fishing mortality rates are high.

Bottom trawls have the potential to cause large amounts of habitat damage due to the fact that they drag across the ocean floor. Although longlines, pots, and jigs are immobile gear types, they nevertheless make contact with the ocean floor and have the potential to cause damage. In order to mitigate these impacts, a number of regulations including spatial restrictions are in place.

Learn more about harvest methods

Ocean Wise Recommended

Ocean Wise

Variety

Petrale sole

Eopsetta jordani

Method

Wild

Bottom trawl

Location

Washington, Oregon, California

Overall Rating

3.1 / 5

Summary

Groundfish in the US are caught as part of a multi-species fishery. Out of the 56 species/gear combinations, only 3 were found to be unsustainable: Kelp greenling from Oregon caught by handline, black and yellow rockfish from California caught by handline, and grass rockfish from California caught by handline. These species are covered in separate reports. Rockfish landings reached historically low levels in the early 2000’s. Recently, management has rebuilt the overfished stocks and 6 stocks are classified as rebuilding. In 2009, the value of the fishery was $66.1 million. Pacific cod caught in the US are sold locally. Rockfish are distributed throughout the west coast, and sablefish are mostly exported to Japan.

Management of a multi-species fishery can be challenging. However in this case, management is strong, as regular stock-assessments are performed, and regulations exist regarding biological reference points, harvest control rules, and incorporation of uncertainty when determining catch limits. In 2011, individual fishing quotas (IFQs) were established which requires 100% at-sea and dockside monitoring. Recent improvements in information availability on groundfish stocks have shown a general trend of increasing abundance and rebuilding stocks.

Some non-targeted species caught in the US Groundfish fishery include: Bocaccio rockfish, yelloweye rockfish, greenstriped rockfish, cowcod rockfish, spotted ratfish, darkblotched rockfish, shortbelly rockfish, splitnose rockfish, yellowtail rockfish, California sheephead, China rockfish, giant grenadier, black-footed albatross, big skate and California skate. Amongst these species include those whose stock status is of concern, whose inherent vulnerability to fishing pressure is high, or whose fishing mortality rates are high.

Bottom trawls have the potential to cause large amounts of habitat damage due to the fact that they drag across the ocean floor. In order to mitigate these impacts, a number of regulations including spatial restrictions are in place. For example, groundfish bottom trawling is prohibited in 25% of Essential Fish Habitat in waters shallower than 700 fathoms. The targeted groundfish are not classified as species of exceptional ecological importance, and a fishery ecosystem plan is currently being developed for the fishery.

Learn more about harvest methods

Ocean Wise Recommended

Ocean Wise

Variety

Dover Sole

Microstomus pacificus

Method

Wild

Bottom trawl

Location

Alaska

Overall Rating

3.5 / 5

Summary

Groundfish in Alaska are caught as part of a multi-species fishery. Out of the 43 species/gear combinations, only 1 was found to be unsustainable: shortspine thornyhead caught by bottom trawl. This species is covered in a separate report. Alaskan groundfish are exported worldwide.

Management of a multi-species fishery can be challenging. However in this case, management is excellent as regular stock-assessments are performed with up-to-date assessments available, and regulations exist regarding biological reference points, harvest control rules, and incorporation of uncertainty when determining catch limits. Much information is available on stock status, and data indicates that populations are healthy. The groundfish are fished at a sustainable rate.

Some non-targeted species caught in the Alaskan groundfish fishery include: steller sea lions, giant grenadiers, killer whales, starry flounders, tanner crabs, snow crabs, Pacific sleeper sharks, longnose skates, spiny dogfish, northern fulmar, atka mackerel, sharpchin rockfish, harlequin rockfish, black-footed albatross, laysan albatross, and Pacific halibut. Amongst these species include those whose stock status is of concern, whose inherent vulnerability to fishing pressure is high, or whose fishing mortality rates are high.

Bottom trawls have the potential to cause large amounts of habitat damage due to the fact that they drag across the ocean floor. Although longlines, pots, and jigs are immobile gear types, they nevertheless make contact with the ocean floor and have the potential to cause damage. In order to mitigate these impacts, a number of regulations including spatial restrictions are in place.

Learn more about harvest methods

Ocean Wise Recommended

Ocean Wise

Variety

Butter sole

Isopsetta isolepis

Method

Wild

Bottom trawl

Location

Alaska

Overall Rating

3.4 / 5

Summary

Groundfish in Alaska are caught as part of a multi-species fishery. Out of the 43 species/gear combinations, only 1 was found to be unsustainable: shortspine thornyhead caught by bottom trawl. This species is covered in a separate report. Alaskan groundfish are exported worldwide.

Management of a multi-species fishery can be challenging. However in this case, management is excellent as regular stock-assessments are performed with up-to-date assessments available, and regulations exist regarding biological reference points, harvest control rules, and incorporation of uncertainty when determining catch limits. Much information is available on stock status, and data indicates that populations are healthy. The groundfish are fished at a sustainable rate.

Some non-targeted species caught in the Alaskan groundfish fishery include: steller sea lions, giant grenadiers, killer whales, starry flounders, tanner crabs, snow crabs, Pacific sleeper sharks, longnose skates, spiny dogfish, northern fulmar, atka mackerel, sharpchin rockfish, harlequin rockfish, black-footed albatross, laysan albatross, and Pacific halibut. Amongst these species include those whose stock status is of concern, whose inherent vulnerability to fishing pressure is high, or whose fishing mortality rates are high.

Bottom trawls have the potential to cause large amounts of habitat damage due to the fact that they drag across the ocean floor. Although longlines, pots, and jigs are immobile gear types, they nevertheless make contact with the ocean floor and have the potential to cause damage. In order to mitigate these impacts, a number of regulations including spatial restrictions are in place.

Learn more about harvest methods

Ocean Wise Recommended

Ocean Wise

Variety

English sole

Parophrys vetulus

Method

Wild

Bottom trawl

Location

British Columbia

Overall Rating

3.0 / 5

Summary

Petrale sole and English sole are caught as part of a multi-species groundfish fishery in British Columbia. In 2012, BC landed $104.2 million worth of non-hake groundfish. A large proportion of the groundfish are exported to countries including the US, Japan, the UK and Russia.

Management of BC groundfish is moderately effective as management measures such as reference points and harvest control rules exist. However these measures are not applied to all stocks, and are not always supported by scientific research. The Committee on the Status Of Endangered Wildlife In Canada (COSEWIC) has identified several groundfish of threatened status, although recovery of these species is challenging given limited data. Fisheries officers are highly effective in enforcing management regulations such as total allowable catch. Vessels are monitored with 100% at-sea, 100% dockside and 100% observer coverage. English sole and petrale sole are moderately vulnerable to fishing pressure. The populations of both species are at healthy levels, and are fished at a sustainable rate. In 2012, 758 tonnes of petrale sole were landed.

Non-targeted species caught in the BC groundfish fishery include: bocaccio rockfish, green sturgeon, redstripe rockfish, soupfin shark, sharpchin rockfish, splitnose rockfish, spotted rackfish, sixgill shark, steller sea lion, Pacific halibut, giant grenadier, Pacific grenadier and flathead sole. Amongst these species include those whose stock status is of concern, whose inherent vulnerability to fishing pressure is high, or whose fishing mortality rates are high.

Bottom trawls have the potential to cause large amounts of habitat damage due to the fact that they drag across the ocean floor. Many of the species targeted by the BC groundfish fishery are found in areas of hard substrate which are more susceptible to damage than areas of soft substrate. In order to mitigate habitat damage, a number of regulations including spatial regulations are in place. For example, no commercial fishing activities are allowed in Rockfish Conservation Areas. In 2012, additional measures were imposed in order to protect corals and sponges.

Learn more about harvest methods

Ocean Wise Recommended

Ocean Wise

Variety

Dover Sole

Microstomus pacificus

Method

Wild

Bottom trawl

Location

Washington, Oregon, California

Overall Rating

3.5 / 5

Summary

Groundfish in the US are caught as part of a multi-species fishery. Out of the 56 species/gear combinations, only 3 were found to be unsustainable: Kelp greenling from Oregon caught by handline, black and yellow rockfish from California caught by handline, and grass rockfish from California caught by handline. These species are covered in separate reports. Rockfish landings reached historically low levels in the early 2000’s. Recently, management has rebuilt the overfished stocks and 6 stocks are classified as rebuilding. In 2009, the value of the fishery was $66.1 million. Pacific cod caught in the US are sold locally. Rockfish are distributed throughout the west coast, and sablefish are mostly exported to Japan.

Management of a multi-species fishery can be challenging. However in this case, management is strong, as regular stock-assessments are performed, and regulations exist regarding biological reference points, harvest control rules, and incorporation of uncertainty when determining catch limits. In 2011, individual fishing quotas (IFQs) were established which requires 100% at-sea and dockside monitoring. Recent improvements in information availability on groundfish stocks have shown a general trend of increasing abundance and rebuilding stocks.

Some non-targeted species caught in the US Groundfish fishery include: Bocaccio rockfish, yelloweye rockfish, greenstriped rockfish, cowcod rockfish, spotted ratfish, darkblotched rockfish, shortbelly rockfish, splitnose rockfish, yellowtail rockfish, California sheephead, China rockfish, giant grenadier, black-footed albatross, big skate and California skate. Amongst these species include those whose stock status is of concern, whose inherent vulnerability to fishing pressure is high, or whose fishing mortality rates are high.

Bottom trawls have the potential to cause large amounts of habitat damage due to the fact that they drag across the ocean floor. In order to mitigate these impacts, a number of regulations including spatial restrictions are in place. For example, groundfish bottom trawling is prohibited in 25% of Essential Fish Habitat in waters shallower than 700 fathoms. The targeted groundfish are not classified as species of exceptional ecological importance, and a fishery ecosystem plan is currently being developed for the fishery.

Learn more about harvest methods

Ocean Wise Recommended

Ocean Wise

Eco-Certification:

Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) - US West Coast limited entry groundfish trawl

Variety

Petrale sole

Eopsetta jordani

Method

Wild

Bottom trawl, Midwater trawl

Location

Washington, Oregon and California

Eco-Certification

Marine Stewardship Council (MSC)
US West Coast limited entry groundfish trawl

Summary

Ocean Wise recommends some Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certified fisheries, but not all. Learn more about how the MSC certification was bench-marked to Ocean Wise.

 

 

Learn more about harvest methods

Ocean Wise Recommended

Ocean Wise

Eco-Certification:

Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) - US West Coast limited entry groundfish trawl

Variety

Dover Sole

Microstomus pacificus

Method

Wild

Bottom trawl, Midwater trawl

Location

Washington, Oregon and California

Eco-Certification

Marine Stewardship Council (MSC)
US West Coast limited entry groundfish trawl

Summary

Ocean Wise recommends some Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certified fisheries, but not all. Learn more about how the MSC certification was bench-marked to Ocean Wise.

 

 

Learn more about harvest methods

Ocean Wise Recommended

Ocean Wise

Eco-Certification:

Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) - Alaska Flatfish - Gulf of Alaska

Variety

Northern rock sole

Lepidopsetta polyxystra

Method

Wild

Bottom trawl

Location

Gulf of Alaska

Eco-Certification

Marine Stewardship Council (MSC)
Alaska Flatfish - Gulf of Alaska

Summary

Ocean Wise recommends some Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certified fisheries, but not all. Learn more about how the MSC certification was bench-marked to Ocean Wise.

 

 

Learn more about harvest methods

Ocean Wise Recommended

Ocean Wise

Eco-Certification:

Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) - Alaska Flatfish - Gulf of Alaska

Variety

Southern Rock sole

Lepidopsetta bilineata

Method

Wild

Bottom trawl

Location

Gulf of Alaska

Eco-Certification

Marine Stewardship Council (MSC)
Alaska Flatfish - Gulf of Alaska

Summary

Ocean Wise recommends some Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certified fisheries, but not all. Learn more about how the MSC certification was bench-marked to Ocean Wise.

 

 

Learn more about harvest methods

Ocean Wise Recommended

Ocean Wise

Eco-Certification:

Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) - Alaska Flatfish - Gulf of Alaska

Variety

Rex sole

Glyptocephalus zachirus

Method

Wild

Bottom trawl

Location

Gulf of Alaska

Eco-Certification

Marine Stewardship Council (MSC)
Alaska Flatfish - Gulf of Alaska

Summary

Ocean Wise recommends some Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certified fisheries, but not all. Learn more about how the MSC certification was bench-marked to Ocean Wise.

 

 

Learn more about harvest methods

Ocean Wise Recommended

Ocean Wise

Eco-Certification:

Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) - Alaska Flatfish - Gulf of Alaska

Variety

Flathead sole

Hippoglossoides elassodon

Method

Wild

Bottom trawl

Location

Gulf of Alaska

Eco-Certification

Marine Stewardship Council (MSC)
Alaska Flatfish - Gulf of Alaska

Summary

Ocean Wise recommends some Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certified fisheries, but not all. Learn more about how the MSC certification was bench-marked to Ocean Wise.

 

 

Learn more about harvest methods

Ocean Wise Recommended

Ocean Wise

Eco-Certification:

Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) - Alaska Flatfish - Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands

Variety

Northern rock sole

Lepidopsetta polyxystra

Method

Wild

Bottom trawl

Location

Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands

Eco-Certification

Marine Stewardship Council (MSC)
Alaska Flatfish - Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands

Summary

Ocean Wise recommends some Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certified fisheries, but not all. Learn more about how the MSC certification was bench-marked to Ocean Wise.

 

 

Learn more about harvest methods

Ocean Wise Recommended

Ocean Wise

Eco-Certification:

Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) - Alaska Flatfish - Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands

Variety

Flathead sole

Hippoglossoides elassodon

Method

Wild

Bottom trawl

Location

Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands

Eco-Certification

Marine Stewardship Council (MSC)
Alaska Flatfish - Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands

Summary

Ocean Wise recommends some Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certified fisheries, but not all. Learn more about how the MSC certification was bench-marked to Ocean Wise.

 

 

Learn more about harvest methods

Ocean Wise Recommended

Ocean Wise

Eco-Certification:

Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) - Alaska Flatfish - Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands

Variety

Yellowfin sole

Limanda aspera

Method

Wild

Bottom trawl

Location

Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands

Eco-Certification

Marine Stewardship Council (MSC)
Alaska Flatfish - Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands

Summary

Ocean Wise recommends some Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certified fisheries, but not all. Learn more about how the MSC certification was bench-marked to Ocean Wise.

 

 

Learn more about harvest methods

Ocean Wise Recommended

Ocean Wise

Eco-Certification:

Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) - US West Coast limited entry groundfish trawl

Variety

English sole

Parophrys vetulus

Method

Wild

Bottom trawl, Midwater trawl

Location

Washington, Oregon and California

Eco-Certification

Marine Stewardship Council (MSC)
US West Coast limited entry groundfish trawl

Summary

Ocean Wise recommends some Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certified fisheries, but not all. Learn more about how the MSC certification was bench-marked to Ocean Wise.

 

 

Learn more about harvest methods

Variety

Rock sole

Lepidopsetta bilineata

Method

Wild

Bottom trawl

Location

British Columbia

Overall Rating

2.7 / 5

Summary

Groundfish in British Columbia are caught as part of a multi-species fishery. Out of the 60 species/gear combinations, 8 were found to be sustainable: lingcod caught by bottom longline and jig, big skate caught by bottom longline and bottom trawl, sablefish caught by bottom longline and bottom trawl, petrale sole caught by bottom trawl, and English sole caught by bottom trawl. These species are covered in separate reports. In 2012, BC landed $104.2 million worth of non-hake groundfish. Pacific halibut, sablefish and rockfish account for 83% of the value of the landings. A large proportion of the groundfish are exported to countries including the US, Japan, the UK and Russia.

Management of BC groundfish is moderately effective as management measures such as reference points and harvest control rules exist. However these measures are not applied to all stocks, and are not always supported by scientific research. The Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife In Canada (COSEWIC) has identified several groundfish of threatened status, although recovery of these species is challenging given limited data. Fisheries officers are highly effective in enforcing management regulations such as total allowable catch. Vessels are monitored with 100% at-sea, 100% dockside and 100% observer coverage. Several species such as the big skate and various rockfish have life history characteristics that make them inherently vulnerable to fishing pressure. The population health and fishing mortality of many BC groundfish is unknown or uncertain due to a lack of stock assessments, or out-of-date assessments. This uncertainty in population status is a concern.

Non-targeted species caught in the BC Groundfish fishery include: bocaccio rockfish, green sturgeon, redstripe rockfish, soupfin shark, sharpchin rockfish, splitnose rockfish, spotted ratfish, sixgill shark, steller sea lion, Pacific halibut, giant grenadier, Pacific grenadier and flathead sole. Amongst these species include those whose stock status is of concern, whose inherent vulnerability to fishing pressure is high, or whose fishing mortality rates are high.

Bottom trawls have the potential to cause large amounts of habitat damage due to the fact that they drag across the ocean floor. Many of the species targeted by the BC groundfish fishery are found in areas of hard substrate which are more susceptible to damage than areas of soft substrate. In order to mitigate habitat damage, a number of regulations including spatial regulations are in place. For example, no commercial fishing activities are allowed in Rockfish Conservation Areas. Bottom trawls are prohibited in areas where sponge reefs exist. In 2012, additional measures were imposed in order to protect corals and sponges.

Learn more about harvest methods

Variety

Rex sole

Errex zachirus

Method

Wild

Bottom trawl

Location

British Columbia

Overall Rating

2.7 / 5

Summary

Groundfish in British Columbia are caught as part of a multi-species fishery. Out of the 60 species/gear combinations, 8 were found to be sustainable: lingcod caught by bottom longline and jig, big skate caught by bottom longline and bottom trawl, sablefish caught by bottom longline and bottom trawl, petrale sole caught by bottom trawl, and English sole caught by bottom trawl. These species are covered in separate reports. In 2012, BC landed $104.2 million worth of non-hake groundfish. Pacific halibut, sablefish and rockfish account for 83% of the value of the landings. A large proportion of the groundfish are exported to countries including the US, Japan, the UK and Russia.

Management of BC groundfish is moderately effective as management measures such as reference points and harvest control rules exist. However these measures are not applied to all stocks, and are not always supported by scientific research. The Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife In Canada (COSEWIC) has identified several groundfish of threatened status, although recovery of these species is challenging given limited data. Fisheries officers are highly effective in enforcing management regulations such as total allowable catch. Vessels are monitored with 100% at-sea, 100% dockside and 100% observer coverage. Several species such as the big skate and various rockfish have life history characteristics that make them inherently vulnerable to fishing pressure. The population health and fishing mortality of many BC groundfish is unknown or uncertain due to a lack of stock assessments, or out-of-date assessments. This uncertainty in population status is a concern.

Non-targeted species caught in the BC Groundfish fishery include: bocaccio rockfish, green sturgeon, redstripe rockfish, soupfin shark, sharpchin rockfish, splitnose rockfish, spotted ratfish, sixgill shark, steller sea lion, Pacific halibut, giant grenadier, Pacific grenadier and flathead sole. Amongst these species include those whose stock status is of concern, whose inherent vulnerability to fishing pressure is high, or whose fishing mortality rates are high.

Bottom trawls have the potential to cause large amounts of habitat damage due to the fact that they drag across the ocean floor. Many of the species targeted by the BC groundfish fishery are found in areas of hard substrate which are more susceptible to damage than areas of soft substrate. In order to mitigate habitat damage, a number of regulations including spatial regulations are in place. For example, no commercial fishing activities are allowed in Rockfish Conservation Areas. Bottom trawls are prohibited in areas where sponge reefs exist. In 2012, additional measures were imposed in order to protect corals and sponges.

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Variety

Dover Sole

Microstomus pacificus

Method

Wild

Bottom trawl

Location

British Columbia

Overall Rating

2.7 / 5

Summary

Groundfish in British Columbia are caught as part of a multi-species fishery. Out of the 60 species/gear combinations, 8 were found to be sustainable: lingcod caught by bottom longline and jig, big skate caught by bottom longline and bottom trawl, sablefish caught by bottom longline and bottom trawl, petrale sole caught by bottom trawl, and English sole caught by bottom trawl. These species are covered in separate reports. In 2012, BC landed $104.2 million worth of non-hake groundfish. Pacific halibut, sablefish and rockfish account for 83% of the value of the landings. A large proportion of the groundfish are exported to countries including the US, Japan, the UK and Russia.

Management of BC groundfish is moderately effective as management measures such as reference points and harvest control rules exist. However these measures are not applied to all stocks, and are not always supported by scientific research. The Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife In Canada (COSEWIC) has identified several groundfish of threatened status, although recovery of these species is challenging given limited data. Fisheries officers are highly effective in enforcing management regulations such as total allowable catch. Vessels are monitored with 100% at-sea, 100% dockside and 100% observer coverage. Several species such as the big skate and various rockfish have life history characteristics that make them inherently vulnerable to fishing pressure. The population health and fishing mortality of many BC groundfish is unknown or uncertain due to a lack of stock assessments, or out-of-date assessments. This uncertainty in population status is a concern.

Non-targeted species caught in the BC Groundfish fishery include: bocaccio rockfish, green sturgeon, redstripe rockfish, soupfin shark, sharpchin rockfish, splitnose rockfish, spotted ratfish, sixgill shark, steller sea lion, Pacific halibut, giant grenadier, Pacific grenadier and flathead sole. Amongst these species include those whose stock status is of concern, whose inherent vulnerability to fishing pressure is high, or whose fishing mortality rates are high.

Bottom trawls have the potential to cause large amounts of habitat damage due to the fact that they drag across the ocean floor. Many of the species targeted by the BC groundfish fishery are found in areas of hard substrate which are more susceptible to damage than areas of soft substrate. In order to mitigate habitat damage, a number of regulations including spatial regulations are in place. For example, no commercial fishing activities are allowed in Rockfish Conservation Areas. Bottom trawls are prohibited in areas where sponge reefs exist. In 2012, additional measures were imposed in order to protect corals and sponges.

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Variety

Dover Sole

Solea solea

Method

Wild

Bottom trawl, Gillnet

Location

North Sea

Eco-Certification

Marine Stewardship Council (MSC)
DFPO Denmark North Sea sole

Summary

Ocean Wise recommends some Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certified fisheries, but not all. Learn more about how the MSC certification was bench-marked to Ocean Wise.

 

 

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Variety

Dover Sole

Solea solea

Method

Wild

Trawl, Various

Location

The North Sea

Eco-Certification

Marine Stewardship Council (MSC)
Cooperative Fishery Organisation (CVO) North Sea plaice and sole

Summary

Ocean Wise recommends some Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certified fisheries, but not all. Learn more about how the MSC certification was bench-marked to Ocean Wise.

 

 

Learn more about harvest methods

Variety

Dover Sole

Solea solea

Method

Wild

Trammel net

Location

North Sea and Eastern Channel: FAO area 27. North Sea stock: ICES subarea IVc. Eastern Channel stock: ICES division VIId

Eco-Certification

Marine Stewardship Council (MSC)
FROM Nord North Sea and Eastern Channel trammel net sole

Summary

Ocean Wise recommends some Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certified fisheries, but not all. Learn more about how the MSC certification was bench-marked to Ocean Wise.

 

 

Learn more about harvest methods

  • Trammel net