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Fleet communication to abate fisheries bycatch


  • Gilman, Eric L.
  • Dalzell, Paul
  • Martin, Sean


Fleet communication systems report near real-time observations of bycatch hotspots to enable a fishery to operate as a coordinated "One Fleet" to substantially reduce fleet-wide capture of protected bycatch species. This benefits the bycatch species per se, reduces waste, and can provide economic benefits to industry by reducing risk of exceeding bycatch thresholds and causing future declines in target species catch levels. We describe case studies of fleet communication programs of the US North Atlantic longline swordfish fishery, US North Pacific and Alaska trawl fisheries, and US Alaska demersal longline fisheries, and identify alternative fleet communication program designs to reduce fisheries bycatch. Evidence supports the inference that these three fleet communication programs substantially reduced fisheries bycatch and provided economic benefits that greatly outweighed operational costs. Fleet communication may be appropriate in fisheries where there are strong economic incentives to reduce bycatch, interactions with bycatch species are rare events, adequate onboard observer coverage exists, and for large fleets, vessels are represented by a fishery association.

Suggested Citation

  • Gilman, Eric L. & Dalzell, Paul & Martin, Sean, 2006. "Fleet communication to abate fisheries bycatch," Marine Policy, Elsevier, vol. 30(4), pages 360-366, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:marpol:v:30:y:2006:i:4:p:360-366

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    Cited by:

    1. Eliasen, Søren Qvist & Bichel, Nikolaj, 2016. "Fishers sharing real-time information about “bad” fishing locations. A tool for quota optimisation under a regime of landing obligations," Marine Policy, Elsevier, vol. 64(C), pages 16-23.
    2. Haynie, Alan C. & Hicks, Robert L. & Schnier, Kurt E., 2009. "Common property, information, and cooperation: Commercial fishing in the Bering Sea," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(2), pages 406-413, December.
    3. Keith Evans & Quinn Weninger, 2014. "Information Sharing and Cooperative Search in Fisheries," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 58(3), pages 353-372, July.
    4. Condie, H.M. & Grant, A. & Catchpole, T.L., 2014. "Incentivising selective fishing under a policy to ban discards; lessons from European and global fisheries," Marine Policy, Elsevier, vol. 45(C), pages 287-292.
    5. Eliasen, Søren Qvist, 2014. "Cod avoidance by area regulations in Kattegat – experiences for the implementation of a discard ban in the EU," Marine Policy, Elsevier, vol. 45(C), pages 108-113.


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