In continued efforts to provide useful information and outreach material about the seabird bycatch issue to the hook-and-line fishing industry, the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) is providing clarification for the codes used in logbooks for seabird avoidance devices used while fishing with hook-and-line gear, according to James W. Balsiger, Administrator, Alaska Region, NMFS.
The current Groundfish/IFQ Catcher Vessel "Daily Fishing Logbooks" (DFL) for Longline and Pot Gear and the Groundfish/IFQ Catcher Processor "Daily Cumulative Production Logbook" (DCPL) for Longline and Pot Gear have a column for "Bird Avoid. Gear". In this column, the code for the type of seabird avoidance gear used during each set is recorded.
The corresponding logbook instructions include a table of the bird avoidance gear codes and the corresponding measure. NMFS understands that some confusion exists as to what these codes represent. Thus, we are providing the attached code descriptions for clarification. Please view the illustration <need link to PDF> as well to assist you in correctly identifying which type of seabird avoidance measure you are using.
We appreciate your assistance in this effort. Please contact Kim Rivera (907-586-7424 or Kim.Rivera@noaa.gov) if you have any questions about these logbook codes or about the seabird avoidance requirements.
SEABIRD AVOIDANCE GEAR CODES AND DESCRIPTIONS FOR USE IN THE GROUNDFISH/IFQ DFL AND DCPL FOR LONGLINE AND POT GEAR
|Code||Seabird Avoidance Gear|
|1||Bird streamer line. Tow a streamer line or lines during deployment of gear to prevent birds from taking hooks. A streamer line consists of three components: a length of line, streamers attached along a portion of the length and one or more float devices at the terminal end. This device can be single or paired.|
|2||Buoy bag, bird bag, or other float device. Tow a buoy, board, stick or other device during deployment of gear, at a distance appropriate to prevent birds from taking baited hooks. Each of these devices consist of two components: a length of line (without streamers attached), and one or more float devices at the terminal end. Multiple devices may be used.|
|3||Lining tube or line shooter. Deploy hooks underwater through a lining tube at a depth sufficient to prevent birds from settling on hooks during deployment of gear.|
|4||Combination of devices. Any combination of the above devices (codes 1, 2, and/or 3)|
|9||No bird deterrent device deployed|
|0||Night fishing. Deploy gear only during the hours specified in paragraph 679.24(e)(3) using only the minimum vessel's lights necessary for safety.|
Click here <need link to PDF> to see illustrations of Seabird Deterrent Devices: Streamer line(s) Code 1 and Bird bag(s)/buoy bag(s) Code 2.