Fish harvesters use traps attached to a bottom longline to catch spot prawns and are allowed to keep incidental catches of octopus. The traps are set from 200 to 300 feet (55 to 90 metres) deep along the ocean's rocky bottom. The traps attract spot prawns with bait and capture them live. Harvesters check their traps regularly to haul in their catch. This fishing method has little impact on the seafloor and traps minimal bycatch or unwanted fish.
Prawn traps consist of conical-shaped wire frame covered with nylon netting. The traps capture prawns live by attracting them through an entrance to the centre of the trap where the bait is located. Once inside, larger prawns are unable to escape while smaller prawns, crabs and fish escape through a hatch.
Fish harvesters are limited to 300 traps per licence and can set six longlines at a time. The longlines are anchored to the ocean floor with buoys attached to each end floating on the surface. Fishermen haul their traps using a hydraulic winch. In British Columbia, there are 252 commercial fishing licences in the spot prawn trap fishery. Vessels range from 13 to 66 feet (4 to 21 metres).
For more info on the BC Spot Prawn fishery, visit this link: http://thisfish.info/fisher...
Editing: Blue Chip Productions
Funding support for this video provided, in part, by the BC Government's Buy Local Program; delivered by the Investment Agriculture Foundation of BC with funding from the BC Ministry of Agriculture.