Alternate Title

Evaluation of the "Gulf Fisheye" Bycatch Reduction Device in the Northern Gulf Inshore Shrimp Fishery


The performance of the "Gulf fisheye" bycatch reduction device (BRD) was evaluated on two vessels during inshore shrimp fishing operations in the northern Gulf of Mexico by comparing catch rates with control nets in twin-trawl configurations using typical inshore nets with 7.6-m headropes. The BRD produced substantial reductions in finfish bycatch with no shrimp (Penaeus spp.) loss in three of the four evaluations. Proper installation of the BRD in the net is critical in maximizing bycatch reduction and preserving the shrimp catch. For the inshore fishery in the northern Gulf of Mexico, the recommended distance to install the "fisheye" BRD in front of the bag tie on 7.6-m headrope shrimp trawls is 2.6 m. Because no shrimp loss attributed to the BRD was noted during all four evaluations in this study, the results suggest that the Gulf fisheye BRD could be used effectively year-round in the northern Gulf inshore fishery and not just when finfish are overly abundant on the shrimp fishing grounds.