Assessment of seal-fishery interactions in the winter blue grenadier fishery off west Tasmania and the development of fishing practices and Seal Exclusion Devices to mitigate seal bycatch by factory trawlers

Authors: 

Tilzey, R., S. Goldsworthy, M. Cawthorn, N. Calvert, D. Hamer, S. Russell, P. Shaughnessy, B. Wise, and C. Stewardson

Year: 

2006

Journal/Publisher Name: 

Australian Government, Fisheries Research and Development Corporation, Bureau of Rural Sciences, Project No. 2001/008

Contact information: 

Fisheries Research and Development Corporation PO Box 222 Deakin West, ACT 2600, Australia
Summary: 

Several designs of seal exclusion devices (SEDs) were tested to reduce bycatch of seals in the winter blue grenadier trawl fishery. A 'top-hatch' SED, or one with a top-mounted escape hatch, resulted in the lowest occurrence of seal bycatch than any other SED design or than nets without a SED. The SED prevented entry into the net codend where drownings occurred. They also successfully expelled seals and limited access into the net via the escape hatch. Cameras are needed to verify the results.