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Bycatch and Discards from Indian Trawlers Most fisheries are at least partially non-selective and they catch

organisms that were not originally targeted. Bycatch is a catch that is either unused or unmanaged. The unusable or unwanted sub-set of bycatch is known as discards, which is subsequently thrown back to the sea, often dead or dying. Estimated world total
bycatch of 38.5 million metric tonnes(Davies, 2009). In Indian scenario, it is estimated that about 56.3% of the total catch of shrimp trawlers is bycatch (Pramod, 2010). The

bycatch is an issue of critical ocean conservation and resource management concern. In global marine fisheries, bycatch represents 40.4% of marine catches, exposing systemic gaps in fishery policies and management. The commercial fishing, especially the indiscriminate capture of non-target organisms is one of the most urgent threats to the worlds remaining fish stocks. Alverson et al. (1994) estimated that annual bycatch in the world fisheries as 28.7 million tonnes of which an estimated 27.0 million tonnes were discarded. Shrimp trawling accounted for 37.2% (9.5 million tonnes) of the total world bycatch. The shrimp trawl is a non-selective gear Biodiversity conservation technologies in fisheries that commonly has an associated catch of non-targeted organisms such as finfish and miscellaneous invertebrates, designated as bycatch. Trawl fisheries for shrimp and demersal finfish account for over 50% of the total estimated global discards (Kelleher, 2004). Trawl bycatch in the tropics is known to be constituted by high proportion of juveniles and sub-adults, particularly of commercially important fishes, which needs serious attention in development and adoption of bycatch reduction technologies. Bycatch is a serious ecological issue in trawl fisheries. Discarded items in trawling include juveniles and low value components of fin fishes, crabs, gastropods, shrimps, cephalopods, jellyfish, stomatopods, snakes and crabs. Fishermen always practice high grading during multi-day fishing and as better valued species comes low value catch previously retained are discarded, in view of limited storage facilities. If the fishers were able to know, in advance, the species and size composition of the potential catch in an area, they could make better decisions concerning fishing operations and, if necessary, shift the grounds, when there is a dominance of bycatch or endangered and protected species in the area. In this way, hauls with

high proportion of bycatch or with incidence of endangered and protected species, could be avoided or reduced.

R.W.D. Daviesa, S.J. Crippsb, A. Nicksona, G. Porterc. (2009) Defining and estimating global marine fisheries bycatch. Marine Policy 33.661-672 Pramod, G. (2010) Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated Marine Fish Catches in the Indian Exclusive Economic Zone, Field Report (Pitcher, T.J., and Ed.), Policy and Ecosystem Restoration in Fisheries. 29 p, Fisheries Centre, University of British Columbia, BC, Vancouver,Canada Alverson, D.L., Freeberg, M.K., Murawski, S.A. and Pope,J.G. (1994) A Global Assessment of Fisheries Bycatch and Discards. FAO Fisheries Technical Paper No 339,FAO, Rome Kelleher, K. (2004) Discards in the Worlds Marine Fisheries - An Update. FAO Fisheries Technical Paper 470, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Rome