Using hydrodynamics to modify fishing performance of a demersal fishing gear

Karen B. Burgaard*, Stefan Carstensen, David R. Fuhrman, Camille Saurel, Finbarr G. O’Neill

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

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This study demonstrates how hydrodynamics can be used to influence the fishing performance of towed demersal fishing gears. Sea trials are performed in the sea star fishery to show how modifications to the gear design alter the hydrodynamics of the turbulent wake and consequently affect the catching performance of trawl gears. The trials are performed on cockle and mussel beds and the effect of the gap between the towing beam and the seabed, and the effect of the size of the beam are investigated. Two different beam sizes are utilized where a large beam reduces the mussel bycatch and increases the sea star catch rate if positioned a suitable distance over the seabed. The catch rate is independent of the distance between the beam and the fishing line within the investigated interval.
Original languageEnglish
Article number106831
JournalFisheries Research
Number of pages9
Publication statusPublished - 2023


  • Blue mussel (Mytilus edulis)
  • Bottom trawl
  • Gear comparison
  • Hydrodynamics
  • Sea star (Asterias rubens)
  • Selectivity


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