Grants awarded for bycatch reduction

24 Sep 2013
As part of its BREP-funded research, the New England Aquarium is using ultrasonic transmitters to help estimate the post-release mortality of angled and released Atlantic cod. Credit: New England Aquarium

As part of its BREP-funded research, the New England Aquarium is using ultrasonic transmitters to help estimate the post-release mortality of angled and released Atlantic cod. Credit: New England Aquarium

NOAA Fisheries has awarded 16 grants totalling nearly $2.4m as part of its Bycatch Reduction Engineering Program.

The program provides funds for the research and development of innovative approaches and strategies for reducing bycatch, seabird interactions, bycatch mortality, and post-release mortality of non-target species and protected species in federally managed fisheries.

Ongoing projects are conducting research aimed at: Reducing bycatch of Atlantic sturgeon and harbour porpoise in the monkfish gillnet fishery; Developing best capture and handling practices for Atlantic cod in Gulf of Maine recreational hook-and-line fisheries; Reducing bycatch of overfished rockfish species in the US Pacific hake fishery; and Enhancing the visibility of fishing ropes to reduce right whale entanglements.

The newly-awarded projects address a variety of species, including river herring, butterfish, summer flounder, halibut, coastal sharks, black sea bass, Atlantic sturgeon, monkfish, sea turtles, sablefish, West Coast groundfish, Pacific rockfish, baleen whales, Eulachon, and ocean shrimp.

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