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Премия рунета 2017

Fishermen catch fewer birds these days

01 august 2018
For four month an observer engaged by WWF-Russia was collecting data on seabird bycatch onboard a longline vessel “Gloria”. The vessel was fishing for cod and halibut.

The vessel sailed in several fishing subzones of the Sea of Okhotsk and the North Pacific. According to the data collected, the vessel conducted 351 bottom longline installations. Each installation was accompanied by an installation of a single streamer line to repel seabirds. The observer registered 35 cases of seabirds by-caught, and no endangered species were among them.

“Thirty-five birds in four months – it is a very low number, taking into account the average seabird mortality during longline fishing. This obviously is a result of using a single streamer line,” says Sergey Korostelev, the Marine Program Coordinator of WWF-Russia’s Kamchatka Office.
A bird is trying to take the bait off the hook
A single streamer line installed during fishing with a longline
Streamer line retrieval
© Yuri Artyukhin
“It is important to highlight, that this was the first time we worked with a fishing company from Primorsky krai. Before that, of all companies of the Russian Far East, we cooperated only with fishing companies from Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky. Now, we have proofs that streamer lines are used in other regions outside Kamchatka,” says Sergey Rafanov, the head of Kamchatka/Bering Sea Ecoregional Office of WWF-Russia.

It is hard to tell how many fishing vessels in the Russian Far East implement streamer lines. However, if the statements of fishermen themselves are frank, it is possible to suppose a decline in the number of seabirds bycaught in the recent years.

For additional information please contact
Head of WWF Kamchatka/Bering Sea Ecoregional Office