Inshore vessels benefit from monitoring app
Five inshore fishing vessels under 10m have been fitted with the AST AVMS (autonomous vessel monitoring system) and iCatch reporting app as part of the CEFAS/MMO/DEFRA sponsored ‘Spurdog bycatch avoidance programme’ in the southern North Sea.
The AVMS has been specifically designed for tracking small, inshore vessels and is entirely solar powered with an internal battery and no need for any external power.
This means the installation is straightforward and in this case the fishers involved with the project self-installed as the AVMS only needed to be secured to the vessel.
The AVMS does not interfere with the operation of the vessel as once installed it requires no maintenance and it does not need to be connected to the vessels mains power.
As part of the programme a daily catch reporting tool was required recording gear type, GPS location of haul, species caught and pictorial evidence of Spurdog bycatch.
The AST iCatch smartphone app was tailored to specifically report on Spurdog bycatch and provided to the fishers to use on their own smartphones. The app enabled the fishers to transmit their catch reports shoreside with the minimum inconvenience to their daily operation.
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