Species items reported in the FAO capture fisheries production database have been classified as oceanic or living on the continental shelves. A preliminary work on the re-arrangement of FAO capture data into large marine ecosystems' (LME) borders was prepared in 1999. In the meantime, following a study funded by the World Resource Institute (WRI), oceanic species in the FAO capture database were identified and subdivided into epipelagic and deep-water species. As a consequence, it was decided to revise the species included in the LME project, excluding those categorized as oceanic to obtain two complete separate sets of species items from the FAO capture database. This document contains the LME study, encompassing the re-arrangement of FAO statistics, and the report to WRI on trends of oceanic catches analysed over a 50-year period (1950-1999) and by FAO fishing area.