The International Council for the Exploration of the Sea advices the Dutch ministry of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality that “there are fewer ecological and environmental effects of using pulse trawls than traditional beam trawls when exploiting the total allowable catch of North Sea sole.”
In response to a request from the Dutch ministry of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality, the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES) issued an advice on Wednesday 30 May 2018. The respective ICES advice compares the ecological and environmental effects of pulse trawls and traditional beam trawls when exploiting the North Sea common sole (Solea solea) Total Allowable Catch (TAC) on five main topics as formulated in the request by the Dutch ministry, namely (1) the sustainable exploitation of the target species (species and size selectivity); (2) target and non-target species that are exposed to the gear but are not retained (injuries and mortality); (3) the mechanical disturbance of the seabed; (4) the structure and functioning of the benthic ecosystem; and to assess (5) the impact of repetitive exposure to the two gear types on marine organisms.
ICES advices that pulse trawling has fewer ecological and environmental effects compared to traditional beam trawling with tickler chains. This advice is mainly based on the work of two ICES expert groups: the Working Group on Electrical Trawling (WGELECTRA) (ICES, 2018a) and the Working Group on Ecosystem Effects of Fishing Activities (WGECO) (ICES, 2018b).
The full ICES advice can be opened via this link.
ICES (2018a). Report of the Working Group on Electrical Trawling (WGELECTRA). 17–19 April 2018, IJmuiden, the Netherlands. ICES CM 2018/EOSG:10. 155 pp.
ICES (2018b). Report of the Working Group on the Ecosystem Effects of Fishing Activities (WGECO). 12–19 April 2018, San Pedro del Pinatar, Spain. ICES CM 2018/ACOM:27. 65 pp.