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The Effect on Juvenile Haddock By-catch of Changing Cod-end Twine Thickness in EU Trawl Fisheries

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The selectivity of North Sea haddock (Melanogrammus aeglefinus) was measured for 100 mm mesh trawl cod-ends made of three different twines: 4 mm double twine used commercially until the introduction of thicker twines during the 1990’s; 6 mm double twine and 8 mm single twine proposed by the European Commission as maximum thicknesses starting in January 2000. A significant difference in selectivity was found between the 4 mm double twine and the two thicker, stiffer twines. The 50% retention length was increased by almost 4 cm when using the thinner twine. Models of the selectivity of these cod-ends have been developed, taking into account small mesh size differences and using catch size as a variable and sea state and twine size as categorical variables.

The benefits of using a thinner twine cod-end are illustrated by showing the effect on the catch of juvenile and marketable fish from a typical North Sea population of haddock. The potential increases in survival of the 2 + and 3 + year classes of such a haddock stock are estimated to be 17% and 12% respectively.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: FRS Marine Laboratory, Torry, Aberdeen, UK 2: Biomathematics and Statistics Scotland Rowett Research Institute, Bucksburn, Aberdeen, UK

Publication date: 01 January 1999

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  • The Marine Technology Society Journal is the flagship publication of the Marine Technology Society. It publishes the highest caliber, peer-reviewed papers on subjects of interest to the society: marine technology, ocean science, marine policy and education. The Journal is dedicated to publishing timely special issues on emerging ocean community concerns while also showcasing general interest and student-authored works.
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