We developed and evaluated an innovative trawl technology that reduces seabed contact while targeting northern shrimp (Pandalus borealis) off the east coast of Canada. The innovative footgear, referred to as the “aligned footgear”, was evaluated in a flume tank to estimate contact area with the seabed and then tested at sea for engineering performance and catchability. Results demonstrated that the aligned footgear trawl produced a substantial reduction (i.e., 61%) in the predicted contact area with the seabed compared with the identical trawl equipped with traditional rockhopper footgear. A total of 20 paired tows (n = 40 tows) were subsequently conducted at sea to evaluate fishing performance. The aligned footgear trawl caught significantly more northern shrimp (+23%), capelin (Mallotus villosus) (+71%), and Greenland halibut (Reinhardtius hippoglossoides) (+99%) compared with the traditional rockhopper bottom trawl.
|Number of pages||10|
|Journal||Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences|
|State||Published - 2018|