Monterey Bay Fisheries Trust: Application for Lost Gear Recovery Project 2018
The Monterey Bay Fisheries Trust (MBFT) is partnering with local fishermen to remove lost and abandoned Dungeness crab gear from Monterey Bay. This project aims to prevent gear entanglements with boats, whales, and other marine life, while returning lost gear to the owners. This is a team effort, with MBFT coordinating the logistics, boaters helping locate the gear, a team of fishermen collecting the gear, harbor districts donating storage space, and The Nature Conservancy (TNC) providing funding support and technical assistance.

As facilitators of the project, MBFT recruits a team of fishermen (the “Recovery Team”) who are responsible for finding and collecting the gear. MBFT also works with other fishermen, local whale watching tours, marine scientists, and others to recruit their assistance as “spotters” to help locate lost gear. TNC has developed a data tool that allows spotters to use a GPS enabled phone to capture images of lost gear, which are uploaded to an online map. MBFT then sends the location details to the Recovery Team.

Two weeks after the Dungeness Crab fishing season ends, the Lost Gear Recovery Team heads out to find and recover the lost pots. When they locate a pot, they photograph its location, send it to the TNC data tool, retrieve the gear, and bring it to the secure location at the harbor. MBFT then contacts the owners of the pots to arrange for pickup. The project is scheduled to run from July 16th-August 3rd.

If you are interested in helping out, please answer the questions below by Thursday, June 21st at 11:59pm PST. For more information, contact Oliviya Wyse, Lost Gear Recovery Project Coordinator, at oliviya@mbfishtrust.org.

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