Water cannons or fire hoses found onboard fishing vessels have anecdotally been used to keep seabirds away from areas of fishing activity alongside longline and trawl vessels. This prevents birds from getting hooked, tangled in nets, or from striking trawl cables. The cannons’ range is usually insufficient to effectively deter seabirds from interaction with baited hooks in longline fisheries, but has potential use in trawl fisheries, where the trawl nets and cables are often closer to the vessel.
Water cannons have reportedly been trialled to avoid seabird bycatch in a tuna longline fishery, with varying success but were deemed unsuitable for replacing bird-scaring lines on longline boats, due to insufficient range. However, the trial did suggest that the technique could be useful in trawl fisheries, where bird-scaring lines don’t extend as far from the vessel.
This page was last updated on 12.02.21.
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