Cod is a cold water fish, which can be found on continental shelves and in coastal waters throughout the north Atlantic. Cod reach sexual maturity at between three and five years, and can live up to 25 years. The heaviest cod ever recorded weighed just under 100kg. Their average size at maturity is around 100 cm, with weights in the 5-12 kg range. Older specimens can measure as much as 200 cm. They are demersal by nature, preferring to live close to the sea bed in waters less than 200 metres deep. In the Baltic Sea, however, their behaviour is pelagic (they inhabit the mid-water) due to the lack of oxygen at lower depths.
Cod in the North East Atlantic is divided by scientists into 14 separate stocks which remain largely separate from one another. Important stocks in European waters include:
By far the largest cod stock in the NE Atlantic is the Arctic stock, which is found off the coast of Norway. All cod stocks in EU waters have shown significant declines over the last decades due to a range of factors, including overfishing.
While cod can be taken by a wide range of means, including long lines and pots, the commercial catch comes almost entirely from mixed trawl fisheries, in which they are caught alongside other demersal species such as haddock and whiting.
North Sea cod was the first EU fish stock to be brought under long-term management. Today, there are multi-annual plans in place for the following cod stocks
Alt Text :
Title Text :
Search all news
Legislation on EU management of stocks (EUR-Lex)
Legislation on TAC and quotas (EUR-Lex)
Recovery of cod stocks (summaries of EU legislation)
The blue economy is growing fast and attracting investment worldwide. Its potential for sustainable economic growth, in line with the European Green Deal, is enormous. Unfortunately, not all economic activities at sea contribute to a healthy marine environment. A new report by the European Commission analyses why that is, and how we can turn the tide.
A new survey invites stakeholders to take part in the prospective Blue Economy Partnership co-design process by sharing insights and suggestions on the first draft of the Strategic Research and Innovation Agenda (SRIA).
Timed to the adoption of the Commission’s new offshore renewables strategy, the latest Euronews OCEAN episode focuses on marine renewable energy.