As of the end of May 2012, four longliners conducted research fishing in the exploratory fisheries in Subareas 48.6 and Divisions 58.4.1, 58.4.2 and 58.4.3a in 2011/12 (Table 1): Hong Jin No. 701 (Korea), Koryo Maru No. 11 (South Africa), Saint André (France) and Shinsei Maru No.3 (Japan). These vessels completed a total of 267 research hauls.
The four vessels deployed their research hauls within the fine-scale rectangles and buffer zones which had been assigned by the Secretariat in November 2011, prior to the start of the fishing season. During the course of research fishing, one vessel in SSRU 5841G did not meet the required ratio of 1 research haul to 3 commercial hauls.
All research hauls met the deployment criteria, i.e. fishing depths of 550 to 2200m, separation distance of at least 3 nmiles from any other research haul, between 3500 and 5000 hooks and soak times of at least six hours, except for the minimum separation distance in some sets in SSRUs 486D, 486G, 5841C, 5841E and 5842E. Limitations due to fishing depths and sea-ice in these southern SSRUs may have contributed to the concentration of research fishing effort.