The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) recently contracted with Pacific States Marine Fisheries Commission (PSMFC) to continue a program that provides free bird streamer lines to Alaska longline fishermen, according to Robert D. Mecum, Acting Administrator, Alaska Region, NMFS.
Streamer lines are an effective way to keep seabirds from diving on baited hooks in longline gear that is being set. These streamer lines are required of specified vessels using hook-and-line gear in the groundfish and halibut fisheries off Alaska pursuant to 50 CFR 679.24(e). The U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, in cooperation with NMFS, Washington Sea Grant Program, and PSMFC, initiated a well-received program in 2000 whereby streamer lines were provided free to fishermen. NMFS is providing additional funds for the continuation of this popular program.
See the following links for more information about seabird avoidance in Alaska longline fisheries and for an on-line form to order your free streamer lines.
This information bulletin only provides notice of the streamer line program. For the purposes of complying with the regulations that require seabird avoidance measures, you are advised to see the actual text in the Code of Federal Regulations.
For additional information, contact Kim Rivera 907-586-7424, Kim.Rivera@noaa.gov, the Alaska Region Seabird Coordinator.