Fishing

Fishing has been an important source of livelihood for people living in coastal Estonia. European sprat and Baltic herring have always been a part of the Estonian diet. Rainbow trout from fish farms has shown up more recently. Fish caught in Estonian waters and processed here reaches also the tables of people living in other countries.

Fishing and aquaculture statistics provide the following information:

  • which fish and from which water bodies are caught the most;
  • what is the state of spawning stock;
  • how are Estonian fish farmers doing;
  • how many people are employed in aquaculture and fishing.

Fisheries statistics are used to plan and monitor fishing activities, to manage fish stocks, taking into account the ecosystem, in order to reduce the negative impact of fishing activities and to secure fish stocks for the future.

Ocean fish catch 13,854.0 tonnes
2023
Baltic Sea fish catch 57,504.9 tonnes
2023
European sprat catch in the Baltic Sea 25,364.7 tonnes
2023
Baltic herring catch in the Baltic Sea 29,366.4 tonnes
2023
Inland waters fish catch 2,505.9 tonnes
2023
Condition of spawning stock biomass in the Baltic Sea and Gulf of Riga 0 tonnes
2022
Share of marine protected areas 18.7 %
2022
Fish farming production sold in Estonia 918 tonnes
2023
Sales of farmed fish roe for consumption 9.9 tonnes
2023
Fish farming production sold | 2008–2023
Baltic Sea fish catch by species | 2008–2023
Ocean fish catch by species | 2008–2023
Inland waters fish catch by species | 2008 – 2023
Unit: tonnes
2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023
European perch 759 820 1,217 777 1,077 920 797 836 1,025 682 568 799 1,251 518 847 846
European eel 24 16 14 13 15 15 16 14 14 15 18 21 37 46 51 57
Northern pike 90 102 85 135 203 217 188 144 143 134 122 144 148 121 103 110
Pike-perch 668 723 534 711 681 672 657 462 761 918 736 695 949 625 479 469
Freshwater bream 768 782 574 677 681 696 850 784 757 847 754 664 712 803 748 663
Burbot 33 30 29 32 25 28 23 19 28 45 41 47 47 49 28 23
Atlantic salmon 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Silver bream / roach 252 211 223 246 223 202 235 229 222 212 211 188 220 261 284 272
Houting 1 3 1 0 0 1 1 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 1
European cisco 1 1 1 1 2 6 19 11 13 45 307 303 143 83 46 10
European river lamprey 67 59 40 39 45 40 30 47 31 41 25 34 36 27 27 35
Orde(Ide) 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 2 2 2 5 4 3 3 3 6
European smelt 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 355 19 56 149 0 0
Vimba 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Other fish 84 81 49 17 15 51 31 27 23 13 14 14 14 17 13 14

Baltic Sea fish catch by species | 2008 – 2023
Unit: tonnes
2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023
European perch 703 810 879 796 550 1,217 1,567 1,523 1,374 1,291 1,137 979 749 792 760 793
European eel 5 4 3 2 2 2 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 2 2 2
Eelpout 1 0 1 3 4 1 0 1 0 68 69 31 35 16 29 12
Sea trout 12 14 12 14 17 15 15 16 20 17 17 17 17 15 16 16
Northern pike 16 13 23 32 35 66 65 52 42 40 68 76 77 60 55 101
European sprat 48,602 47,298 47,862 34,976 27,697 29,805 28,498 23,954 23,687 26,546 29,626 30,649 24,310 25,713 27,552 25,365
Pike-perch 64 67 73 111 147 122 173 83 107 56 66 52 20 53 24 23
Freshwater bream 7 5 4 8 11 9 13 8 7 8 9 9 6 5 6 8
Flounder 284 288 285 280 243 284 313 239 201 187 169 150 176 115 108 98
Burbot 1 1 1 2 2 3 5 5 4 3 2 2 1 1 1 1
Atlantic salmon 6 5 4 4 5 7 5 6 7 9 8 8 11 7 7 7
Silver bream / roach 84 81 88 106 111 102 124 125 140 120 133 158 183 154 204 212
Baltic herring 31,838 33,164 28,862 25,325 22,047 21,941 23,130 32,317 33,769 35,153 34,726 32,833 28,608 27,177 25,313 29,366
Pollan (=powan) 30 23 16 15 20 26 26 19 18 16 17 16 25 25 24 16
European river lampery 0 0 1 1 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Ide (fish) 11 9 6 6 4 7 12 16 27 36 49 50 48 65 69 127
European smelt 739 771 452 200 406 517 234 435 699 411 425 624 964 784 817 708
Atlantic cod 973 821 796 1,180 689 249 165 183 2 1 1 2 1 1 1 1
Garfish 82 71 86 118 25 19 44 116 70 177 75 130 127 107 159 107
Vimba 32 23 30 50 53 56 84 93 73 88 97 119 80 75 86 88
Other fish 85 79 89 124 142 111 153 135 194 250 241 244 326 341 317 454

Ocean fish catch by species | 2008 – 2023
Unit: tonnes
2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023
Atlantic cod 73 128 93 105 285 730 907 989 529 2,544 2,031 2,159 1,289 1,016 798 746
Sharks 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Sea bream 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Atlantic halibut 3 0 3 3 10 11 25 22 30 41 44 44 31 38 31 0
Krill 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
American plaice 77 29 9 36 37 226 1,177 537 1,105 1,249 1,690 1,071 1,000 585 488 258
Silver hake 0 0 0 0 0 0 151 114 57 55 21 0 20 523 142 0
Angel shark 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Octopuses 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Roundnose grenadier 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 4 0 0
Squids 0 5 43 329 1,248 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 9 0 0
Shrimps 12,742 8,587 9,037 9,919 7,576 6,653 5,665 6,651 6,954 7,413 8,019 9,795 9,174 8,810 11,282 12,752
Winter flounder 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Splendid alfonsino 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Cutlassfish 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Capelin 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Atlantic mackerel 0 0 0 0 0 1,367 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Blue grenadier 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Atlantic redfish 1,003 1,748 1,340 1,075 368 1,573 1,300 1,512 1,656 2,198 3,590 3,252 1,820 1,707 2,018 0
Wolffishes 2 5 12 0 0 1 14 1 8 30 36 15 3 0 0 0
Witch flounder 38 8 11 14 33 16 40 22 40 66 31 27 127 73 4 0
Red hake 0 0 19 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Blue whiting 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Roughhead grenadier 132 41 93 116 72 110 136 26 13 23 12 3 11 46 3 0
Skate 123 29 228 82 161 155 246 47 162 304 46 7 2 26 27 0
Yellowtail flounder 33 0 4 13 32 350 24 342 351 39 347 358 335 315 393 0
Saithe 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
European pilchard 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Sardinellas 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Blue ling 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Atlantic horse mackerel 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Black scabbardfish 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Greenland halibut 299 300 441 279 266 727 1,037 694 1,092 1,142 1,286 1,103 1,067 897 495 98
Black drum 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Tuna 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
White hake 19 0 0 0 0 1 2 0 0 0 1 0 10 2 0 0
Butterfish 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Other fish 16 1 1,510 2,618 1,902 36 126 38 31 31 0 0 4 1 0 0

News

Output of fish farms increased, prices remained largely unchanged

According to Statistics Estonia, in 2023, aquaculture enterprises (fish and crayfish farms) sold 918 tonnes of commercial fish and crayfish, for a total of €5.7 million. The sale of fish roe for consumption amounted to nearly 10 tonnes. The sold quantity of fish farming production increased after three years of decline. The amount of fish roe sold was 3.5 times higher than in 2022.
Read more 23. May 2024
News

In fish farming, output decreased but the prices increased

According to Statistics Estonia, in 2022, fish farming enterprises sold 801 tonnes of commercial fish and crayfish, for a total of 4.9 million euros. The sale of fish roe amounted to 2.7 tonnes. The sold quantity of fish farming production decreased for the third year in a row. The quantity of fish roe sold in 2022 was 8 times smaller than the year before.
Read more 24. May 2023
News

Sales of crayfish and fish roe grew the most last year

According to Statistics Estonia, in 2020, fish farming enterprises sold 1,039 tonnes of commercial fish and crayfish, for a total of more than 4 million euros. The biggest increase occurred for fish roe placed on the market, with record sales registered.
Read more 25. May 2021