The mackerel is a pelagic streamlined and fast swimming fish known from extensive migrations. The common size for adults is from 35 cm to 45 cm.

The Atlantic mackerel occurs off the northeast coast of North America, off the coast of Morocco, in the Mediterranean sea and even all the way up to the Barents Sea (although more sparely further north). The mackerel has not previously been known to spawn in Icelandic waters but migrates there occasionally and can then be found all around the country. It seems clear from archives that this happens regularly as large amounts of mackerel were reported for many years in a row around 1900, as well as during the warm period from 1926 to 1945 and sporadically in between and after. It is also clear that it is now mass migrating into the Icelandic exclusive economic zone (EEZ) due to the current warm oceanic conditions.

The mackerel is a valuable pelagic fish and most of the catch is for human consumption.

Jón Baldur Hlíðberg

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