AVMS and iCatch deployed as part of the CEFAS/MMO/DEFRA sponsored “Spurdog bycatch avoidance programme” in southern North Sea.
As part of the ongoing project, five (under 10 meter) inshore fishing vessels have had the new AST AVMS installed providing inshore vessel monitoring.
The AVMS (autonomous vessel monitoring system) has been specifically designed for tracking small, inshore vessels and is entirely solar powered with an internal battery and no need for any external power.
This means the installation is straightforward and in this case the Fishers involved with the project self-installed as it only required securing the AVMS to the vessel.
The AVMS does not interfere with the operation of the vessel as once installed requires no maintenance and it does not require to be connected to the vessels mains power.
As part of the programme a daily catch reporting tool was required recording gear type, GPS location of haul, species caught and pictorial evidence of Spurdog bycatch.
The AST iCatch smartphone App was tailored to specifically report on Spurdog bycatch and provided to the fishers to use on their own smartphones.
The AST iCatch App enabled the fishers to transmit their catch reports shoreside with the minimum inconvenience to their daily operation.