Norwegian-Chinese krill research in the Southern Ocean

Norwegian and Chinese marine scientists will cooperate in studies of krill in the Southern Ocean for the next five years. Aker BioMarine has given the researchers access to its modern krill trawler “Saga Sea” five days each year, free of charge. Two scientists are already on their way south to prepare vessel and equipment for the first survey in February.

The research project is named NorChiK.

Three Norwegian fishing vessels landed 120 000 tonnes of krill from the Southern Ocean in 2010, the lion’s share taken by MV “Saga Sea”. From 1999 to 2009 krill catches varied between 100 000 and 150 000 tonnes. In 2010 this total catch peaked at 212 000 tonnes, landed by vessels from seven nations.


Norway is expected to increase its harvest of this shrimplike crustacean in the years to come.

- Therefore, it is important that Norway is present in the area and contributes to the research on this species. We did a survey in the Southern Ocean with our own research vessel “G.O. Sars” in 2008, but it more convenient and less expensive to use MV “Saga Sea” to collect scientific data, says Svein Iversen.


He is Norway’s representative in the scientific committee that manages the marine resources in the Southern Ocean, CCAMLR (Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources).

China moves in
The scientists Bjørn Kraft and Seorg Skaret will carry out the survey in February, who both have been on the Saga Sea whilst krill-trawling before, collecting scientific data. The surveys in the South Orkney area over the next five years is expected to provide scientific data on krill and some of the species that feed on it, primarily penguins and seals.

After some time the Norwegian scientists will be joined by Chinese colleagues. China started krill fishery in the Southern Sea last year, and landed nearly 2000 tonnes, but a rapid increase in their fishing effort is expected.

- We have cooperated with China in marine research over many years. When China now has aspiration in krill-fishing, we find cooperation also in this area to be both convenient and desirable, says Svein Iversen.

Improved krill control
The South Orkney Islands are situated in one of the three krill fishing areas in the Southern Ocean. This area has not received regularly scientific attention, whereas Great Britain and the USA have regular surveys in the other two.

- Including the South Orkney area in the research programme will give us better understanding of the dynamics and development of krill biomass and krill distribution in this part of the ocean. This knowledge will be of great value for the future management of the krill resources. The basis for today’s management a ten year old survey that covered the whole fishing area, a big international effort that unfortunately has not been repeated, says Iversen.

Associated companies:


Related news

Latest news

USCG confirms OPtimarin in Line for Ballast Water Approval

The United States Coast Guard (USCG) has confirmed that Norwegian ballast water treatment specialist Optimarin has become the first supplier to submit an application for type approval.

New order for Servogear

Servogear announces that they have received a new order from Brødrene Aa. 

Norwater AS reports boost in sales

The Norwater team reports of great interest and busy days in 2016. In a press release, they state that as of the first 8 months of the year, 2016 sales are already beyond target for the year as a whole.

Gaia-facts reaching ground control

The European Space Agency (ESA) has released the first data from the Gaia mission, which has the tremendous task of building the most precise 3D map of the Milky Way.

Polish delegation for Norwegian circular waste management

Against the background of the EU's ambitious waste management targets, Norwegian and Polish stakeholders met on Wednesday 14 September in Drammen.

Milestone at Mongstad Water Treatment Plant

SAR AS reports that an extensive upgrade to the water treatment plant at Mongstad reached a new milestone July. 

Servogear signs new contract with Özata Shipyard

Servogear has announced the signing of a new contract with Özata Shipyard in Turkey. The contract includes the delivery of Servogear Ecoflow PropulsorTMfor two 39 meter passenger catamarans (YN 41 & YN 42).

Statoil and Petrobras strengthen strategic partnership

Statoil reports that they have strengthened their cooperation in Brazil by signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Petrobras.

TechInvent and Island Offshore/Centrica announced winners of ONS Innovation Award

TechInvent and Island Offshore/Centrica were announced winners of the ONS 2016 Innovation Awards, at the Innovation Awards Ceremony Tuesday 30 August.