In the present fishery, most vessels apply fine-meshed trawl panels, but still no net or trawl design guidelines describing the basis selective properties for krill in different mesh shapes and sizes, exist. Increased knowledge on estimates on net escapement and mortality rates will have profound importance for a rational management of the Antarctic krill fishery and CCAMLR strongly recommends members that are fishing for krill to investigate the effects of different fishing gear on escape mortality. During recent years, Norway has become the nation with the largest landings of Antarctic krill.
This is a three year project (2012-2015) funded by the Norwegian Research Council were we will perform morphology based mathematical modeling (FISHSELECT) of different krill sex and maturity groups. The FISHSELECT method has previously been used to describe and predict size selection of fish and other crustaceans. The methodology will be used to describe and predict the selection process of Antarctic krill in towed fishing gear and to predict the basic selective characteristics of different netting designs on different krill population structures.
The results will be used to quantify the theoretic catch efficiency and escape mortality in different nets and to construct a net configuration with optimal mesh size and shape in order to minimize escape mortality. Finally, will we construct design guides which describe the basis selective properties for krill in different mesh shapes and sizes. Such information is valuable both for managers and for the industry exploiting the resource.
The Institute of Marine Research
The Technical University of Denmark
Aker BioMarine ASA