The complexity of the problem of banning discards and bringing all unwanted catches to land makes it necessary to follow a multi-actor approach, whereby scientists, fisheries technologists, fish producers and NGOs work collaboratively to provide the scientific and technical basis to achieve the gradual elimination of discards in European marine fisheries. The project’s overall objective is to minimise unwanted catches by incentivising the adoption of fishing technologies and practices that reduce pre-harvest mortality and post-harvest discards, while avoiding damage to sensitive marine species and habitats. The general approach is based on technical/technological and socioeconomic solutions on a case-by-case analysis of the main types of European fisheries. The project will analyze existing and potential discard-mitigating innovative technologies in workshop roundtables with participation of fishers, technologists and scientists. The technologies selected will be tested in field trials to experimentally assess their efficiency: among other, improved precatch identification with observational technologies, pre-harvest loss reduction by gear modification and switching to low impact gear, and use of artificial light to take advantage of selective attraction/avoidance reactions of marine organisms. The results will be analyzed in terms of technological advances, marketability and cost-benefit analysis. Other actions included in the project are social and economic instruments to incentivise selective fishing and discourage discarding practices, such as ecolabelling, fisheries certification and promoting awareness among industry and consumers, and mathematical modelling of ecosystem effects of unwanted catches reduction.

MINOUW Technological Solutions Seminar held at IMR (Norway)

The Technological Solutions seminar organized to review the 16 case studies planning to test innovations in fishing techniques and practices under MINOUW Work Package 2 was held in Bergen (Norway) in February, 2016. Below you can find the full text of the report along with the presentations from the seminar.


On July 14 and 15, fishermen, scientists, government representatives and WWF met in Blanes & Roses, Catalunya to discuss the progress of the MINOUW project.

The discard ban and its impact on the MSY objective on fisheries-the North Sea

The Workshop on "The discard ban and its impact on the Maximum Sustainable Yield objective on fisheries" of 16 th June 2016, organised by the Committee on Fisheries (COMPECH) and the Policy Department B (PECH Research) of the European Parliament is structured in three parts:
1 The discard ban and its impact on the MSY objective-The North Sea
2. The discard ban and its impact on the MSY objective-The Atlantic Ocean: The Bay of Biscay case
3. The discard ban and its impact on the MSY objective-The Baltic Sea

HIGH LEVEL EVENT MINOUW, Opening Social Solutions

Location: Blanes, 14 - 15 July 2016

"Science, Technology, and Society Initiative to minimize Unwanted Catches in European Fisheries" - A stakeholders engagement process with fishermen, scientists and decisions from Spain, Portugal, Italy, EC.

Global fisheries as never seen before

FishSpektrum, provider a Unique Vessel Identifier (UVI) database to achieve optimal management and proper compliance scrutiny of the world´s fishing activity, announces the public launching of FishSpektrum’s web page↗.

Madrid-based FishSpektrum runs Krakken, the world’s largest fishing and fish carrier vessel UVI identifier & tracking database resource.

Activity aiming at self-monitoring of new discards-reducing measures

A new APP facility for Smartphone has been developed at Mallorca for real time reporting of fisheries catches. Moreover, IMEDEA (CSIC) and DGMRM have set up a protocol for sampling of target species and unwanted catches using trammel nets. This protocol is implemented in an APP and has been used as tool during sampling on board the small scale fleet.

Injury, reflex impairment, and survival of beam-trawled flatfish

Under the “high survival” exemption of the European landing obligation or discard ban, monitoring vitality and survival of European flatfish becomes relevant to a discard-intensive beam trawl fishery. The reflex action mortality predictor (RAMP) method may be useful in this context. It involves scoring for the presence or absence of natural animal reflexes to generate an impairment score which is then correlated with post-release or discard mortality.

MINOUW Second Annual Meeting -- 2016.01.05

The Second Annual Meeting of the MINOUW project is scheduled for 29 Feb - 4 March 2016 in Olhão (Algarve, Portugal), organized by the Centre for Marine Science (CCMAR).


Reducing discards in a temperate prawn trawl fishery: a collaborative approach to bycatch research in South Australia

We present the outcomes of a collaborative research programme tasked with reducing bycatch, and thus discards in a temperate Australian prawn trawl fishery. Sea trials in the Gulf of St Vincent, South Australia, assessed the performance of a modified trawlnet that incorporated a rigid polyethylene grid and a T90-mesh codend. Compared with conventional designs, the modified net yielded marked reductions in bycatch (cumulatively >81% by weight), with pronounced decreases in sponge (92%), elasmobranchs (80%), teleost fish (71%), molluscs (61%), and crustaceans (78%).

Shifting gears: assessing collateral impacts of fishing methods in US waters

Problems with fisheries are usually associated with overfishing; in other words, with the deployment of “too many” fishing gears. However, overfishing is not the only problem. Collateral impacts of fishing methods on incidental take (bycatch) and on habitats are also cause for concern. Assessing collateral impacts, through integrating the knowledge of a wide range of fisheries stakeholders, is an important element of ecosystem management, especially when consensual results are obtained.


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