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for Beryx Splendens

Stock distribution and identity

Alfonsino has a global distribution and has been reported from all tropical and temperate oceans (excluding from the northeast Pacific and Mediterranean Sea) between latitudes of about 65° N and 43° S. It occurs from depths of about 25 m to at least 1300 m. In the Atlantic Ocean the species occurs at both at western (Gulf of Maine to the Gulf of Mexico) and eastern Atlantic (off south Western Europe and the Canary Islands to South Africa).

The predicted/potential distribution of alfonsino(B. splendens) based on habitat suitability considerations(FishBase).

This species is benthopelagic: adults inhabit the outer shelf (180 m) and slope to at least 1,300 m depth, probably moving further from the bottom at night but ascending to feed in midwater during the night; often found over seamounts and underwater ridges. There is no information on migration behaviour.

Reported retained catches and discards

Historically, the main fishing countries worked in the SEAFO CA included Russia (bottom trawl) in the late 1970s, Ukraine in the mid-1990s, Russia (bottom trawl), Norway (bottom trawl), Spain (MWT /BLL), Poland and Namibia (bottom trawl) in the late 1990s. In recent years South Korea conducted a trawl fishery for 4 years and the reported landings during 2010 to 2013 were, 198 tonnes, 196 tonnes, 172 tonnes and 1.6 tonnes, respectively. Historically the highest catches of the fish were recorded by Russia with 2,972 and 2,800 tons in 1977 and 1997 respectively, Poland 1,964 tonnes in 1995, and Norway 1,066 tons in 1998.

Spatial and temporal distribution of fishing

During the period from 2010 to 2011 Korean trawl vessels (Dongsan Ho and/or Adventure) caught Alfonsino mainly in the northern part and in the southern part of Division B1in 2012 and 2013 (Fig. 1-3). It was possible to distinguish two or three main areas or fishing grounds in Division B1.

Figure1:  Annual estimated catch (1.6 tonnes) of Alfonsino in 2013 derived from the Observer Reports aggregated to 100km diameter rectangle.

Figure2:  Annual estimated catch of Alfonsino in 2012 derived from the Observer Reports aggregated to 100km diameter rectangle.


Figure3:  Annual estimated catch of Alfonsino in 2011 derived from the Observer Reports aggregated to 100km diameter hexagonal cells.

In 2017, only one vessel (trawler) from Namibia has conducted fishing activity in the SEAFO CA, targeting seamount species. Catches of Alfonsino took place in C0 (Fig. 4).


Figure 4: Proportion of catch (Namibian vessel) of Alfonsino (B. splendens) aggregated to 100km diameter hexagonal cells (2017)

Length data and frequency distribution

In 2011 the length of alfonsino in the southern area of Division B1 was the largest with average 26.5 cm and 28.0 cm at the 3rdquartile, with two modes at 22 cm and 27 cm. In the southern area of Division B1 the length of the fish was also the largest in 2011 and reached about 50 cm fork length. No trend appeared in 2012 (May-June) due to paucity of samples (23 samples). The length of the species in the northern part was larger than that of southern part of B1 in 2012.

Females tend to have a higher von Bertalanffy Linf value than males, but growth appears relatively similar between areas (i.e., east and west Atlantic, and North and South Pacific) (Lehodey & Grandperrin 1996, Rico et al. 2001, Gili et al., 2002).