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The following schedule is subject to change (as of October 11, 2016). Please check back for updates. For more information about this meeting, go to: www.seafwa.org/conferences/2016
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Monday, October 17 • 3:20pm - 3:40pm
Fisheries. A Characterization of Greenstick Catch in the Northern Gulf of Mexico: Implications for Bycatch Reduction and Economic Viability

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AUTHORS: Mariana E. Steen, Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries

ABSTRACT: In this report, the results of a four-year alternative gear study for yellowfin tuna using greenstick fishing gear are given. The goal of this research was to characterize the catch and bycatch of greenstick gear in the northern Gulf of Mexico and to investigate the economic viability of developing a commercial greenstick gear fishery in the region. Results from this work indicated that the greenstick catch was comprised primarily of blackfin and yellowfin tuna. No species of concern, threatened, or endangered were caught using the gear and no bluefin tuna interactions were recorded. The gear proved to be selective for target species with dead discards accounting for only 2.5% of the total catch compared to 56.2% for pelagic longline gear, but average dressed weights for yellowfin tuna caught using greenstick in this study were substantially less than those reported for pelagic longline gear, 31 lb and 86.3 lb (NOAA 2011), respectively. The majority of yellowfin tuna caught using greenstick gear was either sub-legal or just over the legal limit (27-39 inches curved fork length). Large gradable yellowfin landed ranged from 64 - 101 lb dressed weight, and grades assigned to the fish from a local fish house increased over time. Total revenue per trip was never enough to cover operating costs. Consequently, all sampling trips experienced a net loss. Additional sampling should be conducted in the future in order to more accurately determine if a dedicated greenstick fishery in the northern Gulf of Mexico is truly economically viable.

Monday October 17, 2016 3:20pm - 3:40pm
Riverview A

Attendees (6)