The general set-up foresaw that all tested gears were used in parallel to the traditional gears: the same areas and same seasons. So, it was possible to evaluate their comparative performance.
The biggest attention, naturally, was given to two main aspects:
- how effective are the gears (in sense of catching fish and time needed to set and collect the gears, in sense of their strength under unfavourable climatic conditions)
- what is the by-catch rate.
While some gears were used and tested also by ichthyologists (long-lines), mostly the operation of the gears was conducted by contracted commercial fishermen. However, this was done under permanent careful guidance by scientists, who visited fishermen, joined them during numerous fishing trips and dealt with all the fishing data.
During the project many scientific observations were made. Further just the most important results are given by the three alternative gears.
Results of the project
All by-catch was carefully documented
New “seal-safe” fyke net material (left) versus traditional that got overgrown (right) – both were thrown in the sea at the same time