Feds make more than $2M available to reduce fishing bycatch

- FILE - Alewife fish (Image: Shutterstock)

(AP) — Federal ocean managers are making more than $2 million available to try to help fishermen catch less of the wrong fish.

“Bycatch” is a longstanding issue in commercial fisheries, and fishermen have long sought solutions to the problem of catching rare species when seeking exploitable ones. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration says it is providing about $2.4 million for “projects that increase collaborative research and partnerships for innovation” in reducing bycatch.

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The agency says it is prioritizing projects such as gear modifications, avoidance programs and improved fishing practices. NOAA also says it wants to learn more about possible reduction of morality of fish that are released.

The agency is looking for pre-proposals by Jan. 31 and full proposals by March 30.

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