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MORIN, B., B. BERNIER, N. ST-HILAIRE, 1999. The status of redfish in Unit 1 (Gulf of St. Lawrence) in 1998 ; L'état du stock de sébaste de l'unité 1 (Gulf of St. Lawrence) en 1998. DFO, Canadian Stock Assessment Secretariat, Research Document ; MPO, Secrétariat canadien de consultation scientifique, Document de recherche, 99/132, 38 p .
The fishery in management Unit 1 [Divisions 4RST + 3Pn and 4Vn (Jan. to May)] has been closed since 1995. Before it was closed, it was dominated by fish of species Sebastes mentella born around 1980 and in the early 1970s. Abundance of the 1988 year-class, chiefly species S. fasciatus, declined sharply starting in 1991. The small size of the stock at present is due to heavy fishing and lack of recruitment. Stock abundance seems to have stabilized since the fishery was closed in 1995. DFO research surveys and the sentinel fisheries seem to indicate decreased availability of redfish to trawls from August on. The DFO research surveys have found a new year-class (1996), but it will take several years of survey data before its true size can be determined. Catches of approximately set, the level established last year for redfish industry surveys, are not likely to result in a high exploitation rate if the abundance index remains at its current level.
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