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Fish stocks surge along Qatar coast

Fishing vessels

Life | 2017/12/30 at 3:14 PM | 306 Views

Ramesh Mathew

The sea around Qatar currently has “more than usual” quantities of fish such as tuna, king fish and hamour, according to fishermen.

Speaking to Gulf Times, some veteran fishermen said this is the “first time in several years that these three varieties are being found in such large numbers in the Qatari waters, in the month of December”.

Asked to explain the reasons, the fishermen attributed the phenomenon to “unfavourable weather conditions along the southern Indian coast towards the end of November and the beginning of December”.

The conditions led to a change in natural factors that impacted marine life, and the Arabian Gulf ended up with a greater population of these fish, they claimed.

One of the fishermen said the region’s waters usually receive large quantities of tuna and king fish whenever there is a swift change in weather conditions. “There has been a change in the direction of winds towards the Arabian coast, which has positively influenced the availability of fish in local waters and, in turn, brought down prices,” he observed.

The fishermen, some of whom have worked in the Qatari waters for 25-30 years and have immense knowledge of the local conditions, said they were expecting the season to last at least until the middle of next month and a good catch was expected across the region during this period. A further fall in fish prices was also likely, they said.

Usually, the availability of tuna, hamour and king fish is relatively higher in the months of December and January. “This time, it has been exceptionally good since the beginning of this month,” said a fisherman.

While king fish is available for prices starting from QR12/kg in some major retail outlets, hamour is being sold from QR22/kg, inquiries found.

There are also reports of a “huge rise” in the availability of these three types of fish along the Oman coast, sources pointed out.


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