Evaluation of the impact of pulse fishery on a selection of north sea fish & invertebrates

Marieke Desender, Bart Verschueren, Maarten Soetaert, Hans Polet, Koen Chiers, Annemie Decostere

    Onderzoeksoutput: Bijdrage aan congresPoster

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    Demersal trawl fisheries are known to produce large amounts of discards and to disturb the
    seafloor habitat of benthic organisms. In order to increase the sustainability of these fisheries,
    technical adaptations are necessary to avoid these problems. Electric pulse fields have proven to be
    the most promising option for alternative stimulation in fishing gear, replacing the mechanical
    stimulation. Since 2008 the Belgian ILVO research institute has been successfully testing their
    Hovercran electropulse trawl for brown shrimp fishery. In this device the bobbin rope is replaced
    by lightweight electrodes, creating a low-intensity electric field which selectively induces a startle
    response in the shrimps. Other benthic organisms are left untouched and can escape underneath
    the hovering trawl, which collects the jumping shrimps without disturbing the seabed.
    Nevertheless, the effects of such an electric pulse field on marine organisms are largely unknown.
    Preliminary exposure and survival experiments indicated that the use of this low-frequency pulse
    has no immediate significant effects on most adult fish and invertebrate species. However,
    electrosensitive fish, such as sharks and rays, and polychaete species were not included in these
    studies. In addition, the influence on different life stages has never before been investigated;
    electrofishing over active spawning grounds may affect the survival of embryos, larvae, or
    juveniles if exposed during their more sensitive stages. To re-evaluate the standing ban on electric
    fishing in Europe, recent research has been focused on filling these gaps in knowledge and
    determining safety margins, enabling further development of and legislation on pulse fisheries
    Aantal pagina's1
    StatusGepubliceerd - sep-2012
    EvenementICES Annual Science Conference 2012 - Bergen, Noorwegen
    Duur: 17-sep-201221-sep-2012


    CongresICES Annual Science Conference 2012

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