An illuminating idea to reduce bycatch in the Peruvian small-scale gillnet fishery.

Authors: 

Bielli, A., Alfaro-Shigueto, J., Doherty, P. D., Godley, B. J., Ortiz, C., Pasara, A., ... and J.C. Mangel

Year: 

2020

Journal/Publisher Name: 

Biological Conservation

Volume (Issue #): 

241

Contact information: 

A. Bielli: bielli.alessandra@gmail.com, J.C. Mangel: j.mangel@exeter.ac.uk
Summary: 

Researchers deployed LED lights on the floatlines of paired gillnets (control vs illuminated net) during 864 fishing sets by small-scale vessels departing from three Peruvian ports between 2015 and 2018. Bycatch probability per set for sea turtles, cetaceans and seabirds as well as catch per unit effort (CPUE) of target species were analyzed for illuminated and control nets using a generalized linear mixed-effects model (GLMM). For illuminated nets, bycatch probability per set was reduced by up to 74.4 % for sea turtles and 70.8 % for small cetaceans in comparison to non-illuminated, control nets. For seabirds, nominal BPUEs decreased by 84.0 % in the presence of LEDs. Target species CPUE was not negatively affected by the presence of LEDs. This study highlights the efficacy of net illumination as a multi-taxa BRT for small-scale gillnet fisheries in Peru.