Working Group on Electrical Trawling



WGELECTRAWGELECTRATrueAdriaan Rijnsdorp, Maarten SoetaertEOSG5/19/2014 11:26:00 AMAdriaan.Rijnsdorp@wur.nl, Maarten.Soetaert@ilvo.vlaanderen.be746Working Group on Electrical Trawling

The Working Group on Electrical Trawling (WGELECTRA) works on improving knowledge of the effects of electrical or pulse fishing on the marine environment.

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​The group (formely known as Study Group on Electrical Trawling) examines the effects of electric fishing on the marine environment (reduction of by-catch, impact on bottom habitat, impact on marine fauna, energy saving and climate related issues), in view of current technical developments on electrical fishing.

­­­­­­­­­­­­­­The group has specific emphasis on the relationship of pulse characteristics (power, voltage, pulse shape) and thresholds in terms of effects on fish and other organisms (mortality, injury, behavioural changes). The group is considering whether limits can be set on these characteristics to avoid un-wanted effects (e.g. unwanted and uncontrolled growth on catch efficiency, unwanted ecosystem effects) once such systems are allowed and used at wider scale.

Other tasks include evaluating the effect of a wide introduction of electric fishing, with respect to the economic impact, the ecosystem impact, the energy consumption and the population dynamics of selected species.

Experts from various nations attend meetings, e.g. from the Netherlands, Belgium, the United Kingdom, Germany, and Russia. The group reports to the ICES - FAO Working Group on Fishing Technology & Fish Behaviour (WGFTFB) and its parent committee, the Ecosystem Observation​ Steering Group (EOSG).

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