Funding Advances Research into New Shrimp Trawl Design
Derrick Dalley, Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture, announced C$95,048 of funding through the Fisheries Technology and New Opportunities Program to support sea trials of the trawl, which was designed collaboratively by the institute and industry.
“Our Fisheries Technology and New Opportunities Program helps encourage the pursuit of continuous improvement with respect to the technology and practices used in our fishing and aquaculture industries,” said Minister Dalley.
“This contribution of C$95,048 will support research into trawl technology that may achieve greater fuel efficiency and less seabed contact, which would yield benefits for the 300 vessels involved in the inshore shrimp fishery.”
Traditional bottom trawling involves using gear that maintains physical contact with the seabed at a number of points. This new design features trawl doors that are towed through the water, thereby minimizing seabed contact and potentially reducing fuel requirements. The Marine Institute’s Centre for Sustainable Aquatic Resources is undertaking sea trials with two vessels – one fishing with traditional equipment and one fishing with the new design, to compare the performance of both types of gear in terms of reduced seabed impact, total catch, fuel efficiency and by-catch.
“This research has the potential to promote more sustainable fishing practices and also make one of the province’s most valued species even more lucrative for harvesters,” said Robert Verge, Managing Director, Canadian Centre for Fisheries Innovation.
“We appreciate the Provincial Government’s support, and look forward to completing research that may make the provincial shrimp fishery even more competitive globally.”
Budget 2013: A Sound Plan, A Secure Future included a C$2.2 million investment in the Fisheries Technology and New Opportunities Program, which has promoted innovation in the province’s billion dollar fishing and aquaculture industry by assisting more than 200 research and development projects since 2008.