ICES - FAO Working Group on Fishing Technology and Fish Behaviour



WGFTFBWGFTFBTrueHaraldur Einarsson, Pingguo HeEOSGharaldur.arnar.einarsson@hafogvatn.is, phe@umassd.edu137ICES - FAO Working Group on Fishing Technology and Fish Behaviour

The Working Group on Fishing Technology and Fish Behaviour (WGFTFB) studies measurements and observations relating to scientific and commercial fishing gears, design and statistical methods and operations, and fish behaviour in relation to fishing.

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​WGFTFB initiates and reviews investigations of scientists and technologists concerned with all aspects of the design, planning, and testing of fishing gears used in abundance estimation, selective fishing gears for bycatch and discard reduction, as well as environmentally benign fishing gears and methods with reduced affect on the seabed and other non-target ecosystem components. 

The expert group examines the effect of fishing technology on benthic impacts, vessels and perhaps most importantly the behaviour of fish in relation to fishing operations. WGFTFB provides advices on application of these techniques to aquatic ecologists, assessment biologists, fishery managers and industry. The partnership between ICES and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) extends the reach of this expert group globally.

Fishing technology has been an interest of the ICES community since the beginning of the 20th century. Through various committees, ICES scientists have investigated fish behaviour during the capture process and the functioning of fishing gear for over a century. WGFTFB was formally created in 1983 at about the same time as WGFAST. We meet annually and work intersessionally via correspondence. Under agreement between ICES and FAO, FAO hosts a meeting every third year at a location of its choosing. We share many affinities with WGFAST, and consequently we partner with them every third year to hold a joint session under a topic of mutual interest.

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Group photograph of WGFTFB

Related Literature:

Walsh, S.J., Engås, A., Ferro, R., Fonteyne, R., van Marlen, B. 2002. To catch or conserve more fish: the evolution of fishing technology in fisheries science. In: 100 Years of Science under ICES: papers from a symposium held in Helsinki, 1-4 August 2000. Ed. By Anderson, E.D. 2002. ICES Marine Science Symposia, 215: pp. 493–503.

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