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Biodegradable Fishing Nets May Help Protect Marine Animals

Monday, February 1, 2016 12:00 am EST

When synthetic non-biodegradable fishing nets are lost, abandoned, or discarded at sea, they may continue to catch fish and other animals for a long period of time—a phenomenon is known as ‘ghost fishing’. New research shows that a biodegradable net material can be used to create nets that have similar catch rates as conventional nets but decompose after a certain period of time under water.

The Animal Conservation findings suggest that biodegradable netting may become a feasible alternative to conventional nylon netting and can contribute to reducing ghost fishing. 

Additional Information

Kim, S., Kim, P., Lim, J., An, H. and Suuronen, P. (2016), Use of  biodegradable driftnets to prevent ghost fishing: physical properties and fishing performance for yellow croaker. Animal Conservation.  doi: 10.1111/acv.12256

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