What is bycatch in geography?


Wherever there is fishing, there is bycatch—the incidental capture of non-target species such as dolphins, marine turtles and seabirds.What Is Bycatch? Bycatch occurs when nontarget species of marine life are captured in fishing nets or on hooks. Bycatch can include a range of different animals, from fish to seabirds and even whales.

What is the definition bycatch?

For NOAA Fisheries, bycatch refers to“discarded catch of marine species and unobserved mortality due to a direct encounter with fishing vessels and gear.” These unintentionally caught animals often suffer injuries or die.

What is bycatch and why is it an environmental problem?

Bycatch is the capture or entanglement of non-target species, juvenile fish, or other animals like seabirds, marine mammals, or endangered sea turtles in fishing gear. Lost and abandoned fishing gear can also continue to fish indiscriminately, creating bycatch and scouring habitats for long periods of time.

What is the difference between overfishing and bycatch?

The Gulf Restoration Network has a list of fish species designated as overfished. Bycatch on the other hand, is the incidental catch of non-target animals during commercial fishing operations.

What is bycatch oceanography?

Most people understand bycatch as marine species that are caught unintentionally while fishing for other species. Some fish caught unintentionally might be valuable so they are retained, while others are returned to the ocean.

See also  Can you catch fish in dark?

What is the definition bycatch?

For NOAA Fisheries, bycatch refers to“discarded catch of marine species and unobserved mortality due to a direct encounter with fishing vessels and gear.” These unintentionally caught animals often suffer injuries or die.

How does bycatch affect the ocean environment?

Bycatch causes serious physical harm and often death in marine life. Often, when fish or other aquatic animals are brought up to the surface by fishing gear, the rapid change in water pressure causes their internal organs to rupture, which can be lethal.

How common is bycatch?

While bycatch data is often outdated and inaccurate, researchers estimate that 17-22 percent of U.S. catch is discarded every year, according to the best available data. Bycatch in the U.S. could amount to 2 billion pounds every year, equivalent to the entire annual catch of many other fishing nations around the world.

How many fish are lost from bycatch?

About 40 percent of fish caught worldwide are captured unintentionally and are either thrown back dying or left to die on the boat. This amounts to around 38 million tonnes of sea creatures caught as bycatch every year.

How many dolphins are killed by bycatch?

About Operation Dolphin Bycatch Scientific evidence shows between 6,000 and 10,000 dolphins are dying each year due to non-selective fishing methods used to target sea bass.

What type of fishing has the most bycatch?

Gillnets have the most bycatch of any kind of fishing net, but their use has been declining. Gillnets can be sustainable in some cases, for example salmon congregate at choke points that can be walled off without affecting other species.

When did bycatch become a problem?

Bycatch issues originated with the “mortality of dolphins in tuna nets in the 1960s”.

How is overfishing and bycatch problems affecting marine life?

Targeted catching of essential predators such as sharks, tuna, and billfish disrupts marine ecosystem in the long run. This results in increased numbers of smaller marine animals below the food chain. What is this? This ends up affecting the rest of the ecosystem, with issues such as the increased growth of algae.

Why does bycatch happen?

Bycatch occurs because modern fishing gear is very efficient, often covers an extensive area, and can be highly unselective—it catches not only the target species but many other marine animals as well. Poor fisheries management in certain countries further contributes to the problem.

See also  What are social benefits?

What is likely to be the most important global impact of bycatch?

What is likely to be the MOST important global impact of bycatch? Loss of ocean biodiversity. Gyres are: circular ocean currents that encompass an entire ocean basin.

Which part of the fishing industry has the most bycatch?

The shrimp industry results in a particularly high amount of bycatch — according to Seafood Watch, for every pound of shrimp caught, up to six pounds of bycatch is caught.

What type of fishing has the most bycatch?

Gillnets have the most bycatch of any kind of fishing net, but their use has been declining. Gillnets can be sustainable in some cases, for example salmon congregate at choke points that can be walled off without affecting other species.

Why is overfishing such a complex environmental issue?

DEGRADED ECOSYSTEMS When too many fish are taken out of the ocean it creates an imbalance that can erode the food web and lead to a loss of other important marine life, including vulnerable species like sea turtles and corals.

How many sharks and sea turtles have been affected by bycatch?

It is estimated that 300,000 small whales and dolphins, 50 million sharks and rays and 250,000 turtles die annually as bycatch.

What is the problem with aquaculture?

Environmental degradation from aquaculture practices has been reported. The negative effects include organic pollution and eutrophication, a buildup of excess nutrients (primarily organic nitrogen and phosphorus) and wastes in an ecosystem.

What is the definition bycatch?

For NOAA Fisheries, bycatch refers to“discarded catch of marine species and unobserved mortality due to a direct encounter with fishing vessels and gear.” These unintentionally caught animals often suffer injuries or die.

How many sea turtles are killed by bycatch?

Bycatch Victims It is estimated that 300,000 small whales and dolphins, 50 million sharks and rays and 250,000 turtles die annually as bycatch.

What measures have been taken to protect sea turtles from bycatch?

Similarly, we have measures including fishing gear modifications, changes to fishing practices, and fishing closures during certain times and in certain areas to reduce sea turtle bycatch in pelagic longline, mid-Atlantic gillnet, Chesapeake Bay pound net, and Southeast trawl fisheries for shrimp and flounder.

See also  What happens if the ammonia level is high in water?

What are the types of bycatch?

Fishermen sometimes catch and discard animals they do not want, cannot sell, or are not allowed to keep. This is collectively known as “bycatch.” Bycatch can be fish, but also includes other animals such as dolphins, whales, sea turtles, and seabirds that become hooked or entangled in fishing gear.

Why is catching fish important?

DECREASING FOOD & ECONOMIC SECURITY Millions of people in largely developing, coastal communities depend on the fishing industry for their livelihood and half the world’s population relies on fish as a major source of protein.

How many animals are caught in bycatch?

About 40% of fish catch worldwide is unintentionally caught and is partly thrown back into the sea, either dead or dying.

What is by-catch?

bycatch – unwanted marine creatures that are caught in the nets while fishing for another species; “thousands of dolphins and porpoises and whales are killed as part of the by-catch each year”.

What are the causes of bycatch in fishing?

Causes. Longlines, trawling and the use of gillnets are the fishing methods that most commonly result in bycatch. Longlining is a commercial fishing method commonly targeting swordfish, tuna and halibut, where hundreds or thousands of baited hooks hang at intervals along a single fishing line.

Why is it important to measure bycatch?

Therefore, bycatch estimates are essential to effective management of all marine resources. The National Bycatch Report compiles bycatch estimates for U.S. non-target fish, marine mammals, seabirds, and sea turtles of the United States at the fishery and species level.

What is marine mammal bycatch?

Marine Mammal Bycatch. The Marine Mammal Protection Act requires us to develop and implement plans to prevent the depletion of certain marine mammals that are seriously injured or killed in commercial fisheries and assist in their recovery.

Leigh Williams
Latest posts by Leigh Williams (see all)