SUBMON, the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the International Seafood Sustainability Foundation (ISSF) will work together in 2014 to increase the survival of marine turtles after interaction with longline vessels in US waters. SUBMON will complete a series of training sessions with longline fishermen and fishery observers to discuss the best techniques to handle and release accidentally captured turtles and other protected marine species.Dermochelys coriacea) accidentally caught in a longline hook
This project is financed by NOAA’s Bycatch Reduction Engineering Program (BREP) and the ISSF, and counts with the close collaboration of the staff of the Southeast Fisheries Science Centre and the Pacific Islands Regional Office, who will help organizing all the workshops and meetings.
The training activities will take place during spring and summer 2014 along the coast of the Gulf of Mexico (Louisiana and Florida), the East coast (New Jersey, Massachusetts and North Carolina) and Hawaii. Submon’s veterinarian, with experience in work on board longline vessels (see previous projects in Mexico and Ecuador), will visit different fishing harbors and discuss with fishermen the main problems when handling marine turtles, how and when to remove hooks, and how to best use the different tools they are requested to carry with them by US regulation.Caretta caretta)
After the training sessions a DVD will be produced with what has been discussed in them, the most useful conclusions, the techniques considered most practical, and pictures of hooking locations and recommendations of what to do in each case. This DVD will be uploaded in Internet and made available to download, so that fishermen can have a useful guide if they encounter a turtle during fishing operations.