Sea Angling In Iceland
Whilst Iceland has a very long coastline the important thing to note is that Iceland's exclusive fisheries zone has an area of 760,000 square kilometers, seven times the area of Iceland itself.
Some of the largest fish stocks in the North Atlantic are found in Icelandic waters, including the cod stock, which is Iceland's most important species, and the capelin stock, which is generally the largest in size. Other large stocks migrate in and out of Icelandic waters, including the Atlanto-Scandian herring stock and blue whiting, while still others are mostly close to the 200-mile limit, such as the oceanic redfish stock.
Halibut ('heilagfiski' in Icelandic) can grow up to two metres long and are highly sought after.
When you consider Iceland's northerly position, you might expect the surrounding ocean to be icy cold, have little phytoplankton and therefore be rather lifeless. On the contraray the sea is teeming with life owing to the prevailing ocean currents: the warm Gulf Stream approaches from the southwest and meets the polar current from the north. This produces a huge amount of upwelling of nutrients from the deeper layers to the surface.
The nutrients feed microscopic life in the surface layers, notably phytoplankton and zooplankton and thus support the ocean's entire food web. The Gulf Stream warms the ocean south of Iceland and flows north along the west coast and then east along its north coast. It meets the polar current off the north and west coasts and also in the southeast.
There are many species of fish that can be caught in Icelandic waters such as the halibut, monkfish, mackerel, saithe, haddock, pollack, ling and catfish just to mention a few. In addition to the sheer numbers of fish there are also very many large specimens to be caught - many of which would be national records elsewhere!