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Effect of codend mesh size increases on the size selectivity of commercial species in a small mesh bottom trawl fishery


Author's address: Hai Phong Nguyen, Faculty of Biosciences, Fisheries and Economics, University of Tromsø, NO-9037 Breivika, Tromsø, Norway.



The effects of increasing codend mesh size from 11.6 to 25 and 28.7 mm (inside stretched mesh) on the selectivity of greater lizardfish (Saurida tumbil), squid (Loligo sp.), and penaeid shrimp caught by an inshore otter trawling fishery at Nha Trang City, Vietnam were assessed. The proportion of escaping trash fish from the studied codends was also examined. In general, the lengths at 50% retention (L50) of the studied species increased with increasing codend mesh size. L50 values of greater lizardfish for the 25 and 28.7 mm codends were 109.4 and 145.9 mm, respectively. The 11.6, 25, and 28.7 mm codends selected shrimp at L50s of 8.33, 11.86, and 13.92 mm, respectively, and squid (mantle lengths) at 13.1, 36.1, and 41.9 mm, respectively. The mean proportions of escaping trash fish were 0.06, 0.68, and 0.85 for the three codends, respectively. A minimum mesh size of 25 mm is a good compromise between management goals and fishery demands.