General Fisheries Commission for the Mediterranean - GFCM

Report of the Working Group on Stock Assessment of Small Pelagic Species (WGSASP)

Mon, Dec, 2023, 1am - Sat, Dec, 2023, 1am

Download the report (available only in English): PDF


The Working Group on Stock Assessment of Small Pelagic Species (WGSASP) was held in Rome, Italy, in hybrid modality, on 11–16 December 2023. The main objectives of the meeting were to: i) review the consistency of procedures to provide advice; ii) review the assessment of small pelagic stocks; and iii) run a hands-on data session to deal with methodological issues.The WGSASP reviewed 21 stock assessments. Validated advice was provided for 19 of these stocks, 12 of which were provided with quantitative advice and 8 with qualitative advice. Two assessments were considered preliminary. Two additional stocks were part of a benchmark process completed in 2023, and the outputs were presented. Moreover, one shared stock – common dolphinfish (Coryphaena hippurus) in geographical subareas (GSAs) 5, 10, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16 and 19 – was not assessed due to a delay in the provision of data, but a trends analysis was presented to the WG. Out of the 19 validated assessments, 10 indicated sustainable exploitation – anchovy (Engraulis encrasicolus) in GSAs 5, 6, 7, 9, 20 and 22 and sardine (Sardina pilchardus) in GSAs 6, 7, 9 and 20 – and 9 stocks were in overexploitation – anchovy in GSAs 1, 26 and 27, sardine in GSAs 1, 3, 12, 13 and 26 and round sardinella (Sardinella aurita) in GSAs 24 and 27. During this WG meeting, advice on 10 stocks was delivered based on two or more stock assessment models, significantly increasing the quality of the advice.