Press Release

October 31, 2012

Incorporated Administrative Agency, Fisheries Research Agency

The Pacific sardine continues increasing

The catch of Japanese sardine (Sardinops melanostictus) in Japan exceeded 4 million tons a year in the 1980s but has sharply dropped to tens of thousands of tons in recent years.

The Pacific sardine group was captured over large areas of the Pacific in the 1980s. However, the resource decreased to a very low level in the latter half of the 1990s, and the ground where the fish is found and captured has been reduced to the area south of Joban.

The Fisheries Research Agency assesses the resource of S. melanostictus along the coast of Japan every spring and autumn. From surveys in 2010, the survival rate of the group born in 2010 was found to be high; and the Agency published expected increases of matured sardine and favorable catches in the future. Subsequent surveys revealed that the number of eggs has increased thereafter reflecting increases in the number of matured sardine and that the group born in 2012 was also large, suggesting that the Pacific sardine resource has continued increasing.

The Agency will continue surveys and publish the results without delay.

Japanese sardine (Sardinops melanostictus)