Trials to determine feasibility of LED lights in reducing unwanted bycatch

Photo: Associated Seafoods

A vessel owned by a fishing family from Fraserburgh, Scotland, has begun a 12-month trial to assess the impact of a specially developed LED light on unwanted bycatch in the North Eeast Scottish mixed demersal fishery.

The trials are being carried out on Virtuous, a twin-rig trawler owned by father and son fishermen Sandy and Alexander West, in collaboration with Associated Seafoods (ASL), Marks and Spencer, Young’s Seafood, and fishing technology company SNTech.

The kit consists of 10 lights fitted on to fishing nets. Using a wireless remote control, the lights can be changed between a range of colours designed to attract or repel fish species.

The partners claim this creates a more selective trawl and can reduce the amount of bycatch caught.

Boat skipper Sandy West said the kit will allow fishing to be done more precisely, and there will be fewer resources needed to catch fish. CO2 emissions will also be reduced as a result.

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