Aquat. Living Resour.
Volume 25, Number 1, January-March 2012
|Page(s)||15 - 26|
|Published online||02 January 2012|
Influence of grid orientation and time of day on grid sorting in a small-meshed trawl fishery for Norway pout (Trisopterus esmarkii)
Technical University of Denmark, National Institute of Aquatic
Resources (DTU-Aqua), Section for
Management Systems, Charlottenlund Castle, 2920
a Corresponding author: firstname.lastname@example.org
Accepted: 4 November 2011
A lightweight sorting grid was developed to reduce bycatch in the Danish small-meshed trawl fishery (22 mm full mesh in the cod end) for Norway pout in the North Sea. Experimental fishing with the grid demonstrated the possibility to capture Norway pout with only a minimum of unintended bycatch. Fishing with two different grid orientations, backwards and forwards-leaning, in distinct day and night hauls, resulted in an estimated release of between 88.4 and 100% of the total number of haddock (Melanogrammus aeglefinus) and whiting (Merlangius merlangus) entering the trawl. However, bycatch reductions were not significantly different between day and night or between grid orientations, indicating that the grid rejection of haddock and whiting is not influenced by fish behaviour. The loss of the target species, Norway pout, was low (between 5.6% and 13.7%) in comparison with the bycatch excluded, and clearly length dependent. Consequently, loss of target species would vary with the size structure of the population fished. Although results were not statistically significant, length-based analyses indicated that the grid rejection likelihood for particularly smaller Norway pout (<16 cm) was higher when fishing with the forwards-leaning grid during the night; this might be explained by behavioural and visual aspects of the fish-grid encounter process for Norway pout.
Key words: Bycatch reduction / Gear selectivity / Bootstrap method / Discard / Fish behaviour / Diurnal effects / Gadidae / Norway pout / North Sea
© EDP Sciences, IFREMER, IRD 2011
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