Turtle lights for gillnets

Coelho R, Infante P, Santos MN (2013) Turtle lights for gillnets. In: IOTC - 9th Working Party on Ecosystems and Bycatch. IOTC-2013-WPEB09-INF07, La Reunion, France

Coastal gillnet fisheries are one of the most common forms of fishing throughout the world and have been associated with significant sea turtle bycatch rates. In Baja California, Mexico, investigations have reported 800 loggerhead turtle interactions in coastal gillnets from one fishery in a year, while fisheries off the coast of Northern Peru have reported interactions with over 300 green sea turtles. In response to this increasing challenge of bycatch, Shara Fisler, from the Ocean Discovery Institute in San Diego, and John Wang, from the University of Hawaii, examined the behavioral and physiological studies, that show found visual cues play important roles in sea turtle foraging and orientation. By investigating potential visual based strategies as a way to reduce sea turtle interactions with gillnet fisheries, the team developed the award winning design 'Turtle Lights for Gillnets'.