NOAA Accepting Bycatch Grant Proposals

COURTESY OF NOAA: Scallop fishermen in New England can face early fishery closures if too many yellowtail flounder are caught as bycatch while they fish for scallops. To address this problem, researchers established an early-warning system similar to the salmon bycatch avoidance program used by the Alaska pollock industry in the 1990’s, to help scallop fishermen avoid catching yellowtail flounder.

WOODS HOLE – Over the last 40 years NOAA Fisheries has been working to reduce bycatch during commercial fishing, and the organization is accepting applications for projects to receive grant funding.

The Bycatch Reduction Engineering Program supports new technology and changes in fishing practices to minimize bycath.

NOAA’s mission with the program is to find creative ways for reducing bycatch, seabird interactions and post-release mortality in federally managed fisheries.

Pre-proposals for projects are due by February 10 with full applications due by March 31.

Proposals should fall within high priority areas which include innovative technologies, gear modifications, avoidance programs and improved fishing practices to reduce the impacts of bycatch.

Other priority areas for proposals include plans to reduce post-release mortality of marine species, techniques to reduce the interactions between fishing gears and corals or bycatch analyses and research projects.

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