Minimization of mackerel and seal by-catches in the sand eel fishery (MiniMakS) (39787)

Project Details


In the fishing industry, the development of more selective gear is considered a key element in the ambition to have an economically and ecologically sustainable fishery in accordance with EU's discard ban. This also applies in relation to solving the two biggest by-catch challenges in Denmark's economically most important fishery, the sand eel fishery. This fishery is particularly challenged by by-catches of mackerel as well as unintentional catches of seals. The mackerel by-catch represents a financial loss of up to DKK 24 million DKK annually. Accidental catches of seals poses a problem from an ecological perspective, as it is a protected species, and from an ethical perspective, where the capture and drowning of seals in the trawl should be avoided as far as possible.

Building on positive results achieved in an earlier GUDP project 'Excluder' ( 34009-14-0876), this GUDP 'MiniMakS' project will develop and test a purely netting-based sorting panel, which can be inserted in standard sand eel trawls to minimize the by-catches of mackerel and seal.

National Institute of Aquatic Resources, DTU Aqua
Danish Pelagic Producers Organisation (DPPO), Denmark (coordinator)
Egersund Tor- Mo Trawl Aps, Denmark
Themis S144, Denmark

The project is funded by the Green Development and Demonstration Programme (GUDP) administered by the Ministry of Environment and Food of Denmark.

Research area: Ecosystem based Marine Management
Research area: Fisheries Technology
Effective start/end date26/02/202026/02/2022


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