For the past four years, trawlers on the West Coast have been hauling in vast amounts of pink shrimp, much of it destined for dainty salads and shrimp cocktails across the country. But though these have been boom times for shrimpers, many are uneasy.
Along with pink shrimp, their nets often scoop up a threatened smelt called eulachon. Many shrimpers worry that the species’ vulnerability could lead to new federal restrictions on their industry.
Now scientists in Oregon seem to have hit upon an effective and low-cost solution: Light up the nets.
Last July, fisheries biologists Robert Hannah and Stephen Jones of the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife and Mark Lomeli of the Pacific States Marine Fisheries Commission chartered a shrimp trawler for an unusual experiment.
The double-rigged boat, the Miss Yvonne, drags a pair of socklike nets a foot or two above the dark seafloor. The researchers placed 10 battery-powered green LEDs at the mouth of one net, tying them to the “footrope” on its bottom side. The other net was unlit.
The crew made one trawling tow, dumped the catch from each net into a divided hopper — and gaped in astonishment.
On one side of the hopper, the haul from the unlit net held lots of silvery eulachon, flatfishes and other so-called bycatch mixed in among bright pink shrimp. On the other side, the catch from the LED-lit net was virtually nothing but shrimp.
“We couldn’t believe what we were looking at,” Mr. Hannah said. Illuminating the net’s opening helped the eulachon dodge it. “They’re taking advantage of a little more light to see escape routes,” Mr. Jones said.
It is an all-too-rare example of a simple, affordable environmental fix that seems to produce instant benefits. Results of the Oregon researchers’ experiment, funded by a grant from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, will be published in a fisheries research journal. But already, the news has spread quickly through the state’s shrimping industry.
“Within two months, virtually the entire fleet was using these lights,” Mr. Hannah said.
Read more: Easy Solution for Shrimpers and Smelt Alike
The Latest on: Sustainable fishing
via Google News
The Latest on: Sustainable fishing
- A guide to sustainable packaging labelson October 18, 2019 at 7:19 am
It’s important that packaging labels inform and educate so the public can choose more sustainable brands ... Steering more material away from filling the bellies of fish or turning into microplastics ...
- Six Principles For Building Sustainable Brandson October 18, 2019 at 5:06 am
Think about what drove the ocean plastic crisis: more plastic in the ocean than fish. The narrative is changing from "climate change" to "climate ... This is why they launched their Caring Dairy ...
- Cod or haddock? Study looks at 'name bias' and fisheries sustainabilityon October 17, 2019 at 10:54 pm
Davis will present results in January at the winter science meeting of the American Fisheries Society's Southern New England Chapter in Cambridge. The whitefish study grew out of Davis's interest in ...
- WWF presents five-year sustainable marine fisheries management planon October 17, 2019 at 12:06 pm
Noel Holder (Photo: WWF) The plan addresses key issues and challenges within the artisanal fisheries sector, once solved, will aid in the realisation of sustainable fishing practices, these include; ...
- Gulf Menhaden Fishery Achieves MSC Certificationon October 17, 2019 at 9:46 am
MOSS POINT, MS and NEW ORLEANS, LA / ACCESSWIRE / October 17, 2019 / Today, the Gulf menhaden fishery was certified as sustainable against Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) standards. Now all fishmeal ...
- How can building and strengthening international institutions help achieve climate resilient fisheries?on October 17, 2019 at 9:39 am
Throughout the series, we’ll be investigating how climate change will impact the world’s supply and distribution of fish and what we can do to ensure the most sustainable future for ourselves and our ...
- NGOs angry, say EU set Baltic quotas above ‘sustainable fishing levels’on October 15, 2019 at 5:18 pm
Conservation NGOs have expressed their anger with the EU, as Baltic Sea fishing quotas were set late on Oct. 14 at levels above the EU's own legal requirements for sustainable fishing levels in 2020.
- Tampa Bay restaurant and bar openings: Poke Fish expands, We Are Poke debuts in Tampaon October 15, 2019 at 8:07 am
First opened by owner Brad Matherne on W Kennedy Boulevard in 2018, Poke Fish became neighbors with SoHo Juice and Shula Burger in Tampa’s SoHo area on Oct. 4. The menu — highlighting sustainable fish ...
- Report: 'Sustainable' seafood in UK supermarkets 'wiping out wild fish stocks'on October 15, 2019 at 3:23 am
It additionally claims that the IFFO – the trade body used to certify FMFO as ‘sustainable’ – has accepted membership from companies linked to these fishing operations. Supermarkets including Tesco, ...
- UK supermarkets selling 'sustainable' Scottish salmon linked to collapse of wild fish stockson October 15, 2019 at 1:33 am
Shoppers buying farmed fish such as prawns and Scottish salmon labelled as sustainable in UK supermarkets may unwittingly be contributing to the collapse of fish stocks in Asia and Africa, a report ...
via Bing News