Trawls

Trawls are cone-shaped nets with two, four, or more panels, ending in a bag. They are towed at midwater or near the bottom, and held open horizontally by heavy doors (<i>otter trawls</i>), by beams, or by the tension created by lines connecting the net to two separate vessels (<i>pair trawls</i>). The net opening is sustained vertically by floats and weights. Fish size and species is controlled by mesh size; pelagic, demersal, and benthic fish can be targeted. The recent development of trawls with large wheels (<i>rockhoppers</i>) prevents damage and tangling of nets, and has eliminated the disincentive to trawling along rugged seafloors.
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For more detailed information, please visit the FAO Fisheries and Aquaculture Department <a href="http://www.fao.org/fishery/geartype/103/en" target="_blank">trawl nets</a> web page.

Field Study 324

Study Type: 

wild

Location: 

Northern Australia

Target catch: 

Prawns

Effect on bycatch species: 

Upward facing TED's reduced large sponge catches by 81.6%

Effect on target catch: 

Reduced the proportion of soft and damaged prawns by 35.8% and reduced catches of tiger prawns by 6.3%

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Field Study 323

Study Type: 

wild

Location: 

Northern Australia

Target catch: 

Prawns

Effect on bycatch species: 

Reduced ray catches by 17.7%

Effect on target catch: 

Reduced the proportion of soft and damaged prawns by 41.6% and reduced catches of tiger prawns by 6.5%

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Field Study 322

Study Type: 

wild

Location: 

Northern Australia

Target catch: 

Prawns

Effect on bycatch species: 

Reduced shark catches by 36.3%

Effect on target catch: 

Reduced the proportion of soft and damaged prawns by 41.6% and reduced catches of tiger prawns by 6.5%

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Field Study 321

Study Type: 

wild

Location: 

Northern Australia

Target catch: 

Prawns

Effect on bycatch species: 

Downward facing TEDs reduced sea turtle catches by 100%

Effect on target catch: 

Reduced the proportion of soft and damaged prawns by 63.2% and reduced catches of tiger prawns by 6.3%

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Field Study 314

Study Type: 

wild

Location: 

New South Whales, Australia

Target catch: 

Prawns

Effect on bycatch species: 

Haulback delay of 10-15 seconds allowed juvenile red spot to escape through the square mesh panels

Effect on target catch: 

No difference in the catch or weight of prawns

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Field Study 305

Study Type: 

wild

Location: 

Western Australia

Target catch: 

Red emperor, scarlet perch, spangled emperor, Rankin cod, blue spot emperor, rosy threadfin brea, flagfish, frypan snapper, red snapper and goldband snapper

Effect on bycatch species: 

Reduced capture of sharks larger than 100 cm with largest reductions occuring at lengths greater than 180 cm

Effect on target catch: 

None reported

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Field Study 303

Study Type: 

wild

Location: 

Western Australia

Target catch: 

Red emperor, scarlet perch, spangled emperor, Rankin cod, blue spot emperor, rosy threadfin brea, flagfish, frypan snapper, red snapper and goldband snapper

Effect on bycatch species: 

Redcuced catches rates from 26.2 (catch per 1000 shots) to 0.9

Effect on target catch: 

None reported

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