Thursday, June 15, 2017

And now for something Fishy

Being an island Great Britain has had a long association with the sea, and fish. But with “modern” fishing practices and regulations sustainable fishing is under threat, due mainly to by catch. Large amounts of fish are thrown back into the sea, dead, because they are not allowed to be landed. Step forward an innovative new British company with their new technology aptly called PISCES.

And not before time with the fishing industry expected to become obsolete by 2048 with no more fish left to catch.

SafetyNet Technologies new toy uses lights to attract and repel fish and in trials has been shown to eliminate by catch by up to 90%, so as you can imagine it has huge potential meaning fisherman only catching the fish they are able to sell. Not catching the wrong type, and fish that are too small or young are left to grow and reproduce. No more having to throw bycatch overboard or discard on land.

Is there a catch you ask? [Sorry]. What about cost? Well, the technology will pay for itself in one day’s catch.

So how does Pisces work? It is so simple; the equipment fits easily onto any fishing net and about 10-20 are needed for the full effect to take place and the colour of light is chosen by and controlled by the Fishermen. SafetyNet’s trials with Youngs Seafood and the Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science have shown that their devices can lower bycatch by up to 60%. This is reinforced by experiments in fisheries the world over, some of which have used light to reduce bycatch by up to 90%.

SafetyNet have completed their proof of concept and are now ready to expand into batch production. This will enable them, with their scientific and industry partners, to explore new trials with other fish species in fisheries around the globe.

David Parket, Head of CSR and Marine Biologist for Young Seafood says: “The results of this research are very encouraging and we now hope that the industry, Government and other organisations will come together to support further trials. Having been out on the trawler during the research and having seen the technology in action, I believe this innovation could have a positive impact on the industry and the future of fishing.”

George Eustace MP, UK Fishing Minister has said: “I note the promising results of this trial as you outline, and am very supportive of innovative methods to improve selectivity and supporting UK fishing vessels in fishing sustainably.”

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