Agreement on the Conservation of Albatrosses and Petrels

The water sprayer: a new seabird mitigation device for fishing trawlers performs well under test

A new seabird mitigation device called a water sprayer being developed by the Australian Fisheries Management Authority (AFMA) is reported to reduce seabird interactions with the cables or warps used to tow nets from trawlers by 90% (click here).

“The water sprayer sits over each warp and rains a heavy stream of water down on the area where the warps enter the sea.  This stream can be aimed at the warp to allow for wind and whether the vessel is fishing shallow or deep.  If the vessel is fishing deep the angle of the warp is steeper and it is closer to the vessel.”

The water sprayer has been developed using Australian Government funding.  A video of it in action can be viewed here.  The project is ongoing and testing of a second device is still underway.

Black-browed Albatrosses gather in large numbers around a trawler, photograph by Graham Parker

Read more on AFMA’s efforts to mitigate seabird mortality by trawlers.

Click here to access ACAP’s best-practice advice for mitigating seabird mortality by both pelagic and demersal trawlers.

John Cooper, ACAP Information Officer, 01 September 2015

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