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
- Food Lion joins Ocean Disclosure Project to increase transparency of sustainable seafoodon February 27, 2020 at 9:02 am
All seafood products sold in Food Lion stores are fully traceable to the wild fishery or farm, and come from sustainable sources, and Food Lion’s ODP public profile outlines the origin of wild-caught ...
- This Italian winery makes sustainable wines you can buy online — here's how it's pushing innovation in an industry rooted in traditionon February 27, 2020 at 8:00 am
The first winery in the world to win an ISO award for sustainability is cloning grapes that combat climate change. Here's where to buy it online.
- UBS launches new private client program following landmark thematic and sustainable investing achievementson February 27, 2020 at 5:10 am
The themes will have a strong sustainable component, but will venture beyond pure sustainability considerations ... Plastic waste in the sea could outweigh fish by 2050 if current practices continue.
- Kenya: Investment in Fisheries for Agricultural Growthon February 26, 2020 at 4:00 pm
By Sharon AtienoWith annualglobal growth in fish consumption exceeding that of meat from all terrestrialanimals combined, the fisheries sector is a promising area for investment.Noting therole of ...
- Illicit trade in marine fish catch and its effects on ecosystems and people worldwideon February 26, 2020 at 12:30 pm
This implies that IUU fishing is an important negative driver that needs to be tackled by both the global community and individual countries if we wish to secure sustainable and inclusive benefits ...
- Why it's now cool to eat 'unpopular fish'on February 26, 2020 at 7:10 am
So many diners have opted for Chilean sea bass and the Atlantic salmon that they are dangerously overfished. So show a little taste and order up other species before they get popular.
- European Fisheries Control Agency Awards Contract to Unisys for IT Services and Support to Help Preserve Fish Stockson February 26, 2020 at 4:50 am
BLUE BELL, Pa. and LONDON and VIGO, Spain, Feb. 26, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Unisys Corporation (NYSE: UIS) today announced that the European Fisheries Control Agency (EFCA) is partnering with Unisys for ...
- Healthy fisheries in Biscayne National Park boon to tourists and economy | Opinionon February 25, 2020 at 3:57 pm
It will go into effect later this year on July 1. Over the long term, this plan presents common-sense, balanced and scientifically supported fisheries management, unlike the Park Service’s 10,000-acre ...
- Sustainable finance comparable to open banking, according to Endjin founderon February 25, 2020 at 12:16 pm
... the oceans and has developed a suite of services to help governments and the seafood supply chain to monitor compliance of fishing activities. Oceanmind CEO Nick Wise was one of the speakers at ...
- Food Lion Increases Transparency of Sustainable Seafood Sourcing Effortson February 25, 2020 at 9:40 am
All seafood products sold in Food Lion stores are fully traceable to the wild fishery or farm, and come from sustainable sources, and Food Lion’s Ocean Disclosure Project public profile outlines the ...
via Bing News