Reducing the effects of seals on the fisheries (39697)

Project Details


The general aims of the project are to test methods to mitigate the effects of seals on the coastal gillnet and longline fisheries, to get a better overview of the total effects of the seals on the gillnet and longline fisheries and of the seal predation on Baltic cod, and to contribute to estimating the real bycatch rates of marine mammals in the gillnet fishery.

Specifically, the project includes these activities:
1. Testing the effects of a new and innovative seal scarer efficiency in reducing the seal depredation on longlines.
2. Testing if stop grids can keep seals out of pound nets.
3. Estimating the amount of fish that seals remove from gillnets without trace.
4. Estimating the total consumption of cod by grey seals in the central Baltic Sea based on the spatial distribution of seals and cod and data on consumption rates.
5. Estimate the drop-out rate for marine mammals bycaught in gillnets.
6. Communicate the project results to a wider audience.

The first two activities focus on reducing the effects of seals on the fisheries and thus will help small-scale coastal vessels and pound net fishermen conduct an economically sustainable fishery, and activities 3-5 will contribute to a better basis for managing the seal-fishery conflict. The project will therefore contribute to conservation of the small-scale coastal fisheries in Denmark.

The introduction of the seal scarer and the stop grid in the pound nets will also contribute to reducing the bycatch of species like seals and harbour porpoises protected under the EU Habitat Directive (Council Directive 92/43/EEC of 27 May 1992).

The project is coordinated by DTU Aqua and funded by the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund and the Danish Fisheries Agency.

Research area: Ecosystem based Marine Management
Research area: Marine Populations and Ecosystem Dynamics
Effective start/end date14/06/201908/10/2021