For people who fish for a living, removing bycatch from nets is a tedious task. It’s expensive, labor-intensive and causes wear to the fishing vessel and gear. For marine animals unintentionally captured, the results are more debilitating — mostly fatal. From an ecological point of view, killing too many animals unintentionally can disrupt entire marine ecosystems and the food chains that keep them balanced. And yet, bycatch comprises as much as 40% of the global fishing catch.
U.K.-based startup SafetyNet Technologies is attempting to find a technological solution. The company deploys LED lights of varying colors and intensities that fishers can attach to their gear to attract certain species. They can change the lights depending on the fish species they want to target.