Expression of Interest
We are seeking proposals to develop a 3/8” diameter endline with 1700lb virgin breaking strength that is comparable to those currently used in northwest Atlantic lobster pot fisheries. The concept is to use a rope that is practical for many pot fisheries while facilitating escape should whales come into contact with them. Innovative “whale-release” ropes should be developed according to the specifications provided below. We offer facilitation to test these ropes with fishermen in the northeastern US using a rigorous protocol developed between our scientists and lobster fishermen. We also have small seed grants available should they be necessary to support the research and development of prototypes, and support for relatively small production runs to produce sufficient coils for preliminary testing with fishermen. We are not interested in being part of any patent on whale-release rope ideas submitted, but are only committed to facilitating their evaluation and eventual adoption if they are shown to achieve the objectives laid out herein.
Expressions of interest will be accepted at any time, however concepts submitted by June 1, 2018 stand a better chance of receiving support owing to the urgency for solutions to the current crisis facing North Atlantic right whales (NARWs).