Walleye Pollock Research
Walleye pollock (Theragra chalcogramma) is a key species
in the Alaska groundfish complex and a target species for one of
the world's largest fisheries. Walleye pollock produce the largest catch of
any single species inhabiting the 200-mile U.S. Exclusive
Economic Zone. Today, Alaska pollock is the primary "fish-stick fish." It is also the fish used in many fast-food fish sandwiches, and the mild-tasting fish is regularly used in imitation crab.
Pollock is a semipelagic schooling
fish widely distributed in the North Pacific Ocean with
largest concentrations found in the eastern Bering Sea.
Pollock are considered a relatively fast growing
and short-lived species and currently
represents a major biological component of the Bering Sea ecosystem. In the
U.S. portion of the Bering Sea including the Aleutian Islands region, three stocks of pollock are identified for management
Pollock in the Gulf of Alaska are managed as a single stock independently of pollock
in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands. The separation of pollock in Alaskan
waters into eastern Bering Sea and Gulf of Alaska stocks is supported by analysis
of larval drift patterns from spawning locations, genetic studies of allozyme
frequencies, mtDNA variability, and microsatellite allele variability.
During 2011, pollock made up 62% of the total groundfish catch off Alaska. The pollock catch for 2011 was 1,282,780 metric tons (t), up approximately 44% from 2010.
The 2011 catch of flatfish, which includes yellowfin sole, rock sole and arrowtooth flounder, was 327,310 t or 15.8% of the total 2011 Alaska groundfish catch, up about 12% from 2010.
Pacific cod accounted for 304,950 t or 14.7% of the total 2011 Alaska groundfish catch. The Pacific cod catch was up about 22% from a year earlier.
Other important species (% of total 2011 catch and % change from 2010) are: Atka mackerel 53,430 t (2.6%, down 25%),
sablefish 12,870 t (0.6%, up 8%), and rockfish 51,120 t (2.5%, up 5%).
(Source: North Pacific Groundfish Stock Assessment and Fishery Evaluation Reports.)
- KONDZELA, C. M., C. T. MARVIN, S. C. VULSTEK, H. T. NGUYEN, and J. R. GUYON.
2013. Genetic stock composition analysis of chum salmon bycatch samples from the 2011 Bering Sea walleye pollock trawl fishery. U.S. Dep. Commer., NOAA Tech. Memo. NMFS-AFSC-243, 39 p. (.pdf, 812 KB).
- JONES, D., and M. GUTTORMSEN.
2012. Results of the acoustic-trawl surveys of walleye pollock (Theragra chalcogramma) in the Gulf of Alaska, February-March 2012 (DY2012-01 and DY2012-03). AFSC Processed Rep. 2012-09, 62 p. Alaska Fish. Sci. Cent., NOAA, Natl. Mar. Fish. Serv., 7600 Sand Point Way NE, Seattle WA 98115. (.pdf, 3.42 MB). Online.
- McKELVEY, D., and S. STEINESSEN.
2012. Results of the March 2012 acoustic-trawl survey of walleye pollock (Theragra chalcogramma) conducted in the southeastern Aleutian Basin near Bogoslof Island, Cruise DY2012-02. AFSC Processed Rep. 2012-08, 36 p. Alaska Fish. Sci. Cent., NOAA, Natl. Mar. Fish. Serv., 7600 Sand Point Way NE, Seattle WA 98115. (.pdf, 1.84 MB). Online.
- URBAN, D.
2012. Food habits of Pacific cod and walleye pollock in the northern Gulf of Alaska. Mar. Ecol. Prog. Ser. 469:215-222.
- Using Muscle Cell Nuclear RNA to Improve Condition Measurements of Walleye Pollock (Theragra chalcogramma) Larvae Assessed with Flow Cytometry
By: STEVEN M. PORTER, KEVIN M. BAILEY
Conference: Alaska Marine Science Symposium, Anchorage, AK, Jan 2012
(2012 poster, .pdf, 1.8 MB) Online.
- Spatial and Temporal Reproductive Patterns in Walleye Pollock (Theragra chalcogramma) in the Bering Sea
By: TOM HOLLAND, SANDI NEIDETCHER
Conference: Western Groundfish Conference (17th), Seattle, WA., Feb 2012
(2012 poster, .pdf, 8 MB) Online.
- Additional publications, posters, and reports.