ACAP Review and Best Practice Advice for Reducing the Impact of Pelagic Longline Fisheries on Seabirds
This document provides advice about best practices for reducing the impact of pelagic longline fishing on seabirds. ACAP’s best practice advice is that the simultaneous use of weighted branch lines, bird scaring lines and night setting is the most effective approach to mitigate seabird bycatch in pelagic longline fisheries. Two hook-shielding devices, the ‘Hook Pod’ and the ‘Smart Tuna Hook’, have recently (2016) been assessed and on the basis of this assessment have been included in the list of best practice measures for mitigating seabird bycatch in pelagic longline fisheries. These best practice bycatch mitigation measures should be applied in areas where fishing effort overlaps with seabirds vulnerable to bycatch to reduce the incidental mortality to the lowest possible levels. The ACAP review process recognises that factors such as safety, practicality and the characteristics of the fishery should also be taken into account when considering the efficacy of seabird bycatch mitigation measures and consequently in the development of advice and guidelines on best practice.