Marine debris in bottom trawl catches and their effects on the selectivity grids in the north eastern Mediterranean

Source: ScienceDirect

Authors:Ahmet Raif Eryaşar, Hüseyin Özbilgin, Ali Cemal Gücü, Serdar Sakınan

Abstract

In this study composition of marine debris and their blocking potential on the selectivity grid systems deployed on demersal trawls were investigated in the north eastern Mediterranean. For this, a total of 132 hauls were examined in two fishing season between 20 September 2010 and 19 February 2012. Results showed that plastic items were the most abundant debris (73% in terms of weight) and they were followed by metals (10%). Because of plastics and packing debris, it is highly probable that grids may have been blocked in 85% of trawl hauls. The bathymetric and geographical variability in the quantity of debris were evaluated, and concluded that particularly in some areas where direction of currents and bottom topography favor deposition, such devices may easily be rendered ineffective by the plastics and packing debris in particular. To solve this problem, several solution proposals are submitted.

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