Pratiques de pêche responsables pour une pêche durable

ICES-FAO Working group on Fishing Gear Technology and Fish Behaviour (WGFTFB) 2024 Annual Meeting


Location: Marine Institute, Memorial University, Newfoundland, Canada

Date: 3-7 June 2024  


The ICES/FAO Working Group on Fishing Technology and Fish Behaviour (WGFTFB) studies measurements and observations relating to scientific and commercial fishing gears, design and statistical methods and operations, and fish behaviour in relation to fishing.

Under agreement between ICES and FAO, FAO hosts a meeting every third year at a location of its choosing. The group is normally attended by about 60–100 regular members and chair-invited members. Participation is approximately 100-150 in the year when FAO-ICES symposium is held. The numbers of attendees to the meeting have been growing in recent years. This years meeting was hosted by Canada and held at the Fisheries and Marine Institute of Memorial University of Newfoundland and was physically attended by 95 participants (Annex I).

The ICES-FAO Working Group on Fishing Technology and Fish Behaviour (WGFTFB), chaired by Noëlle Yochum (U.S.A.), Antonello Sala (Italy), and Jon Lansley (on behalf of FAO), in accordance with the WGs Terms of Reference convened the 2024 annual meeting to deliberate, discuss and synthesize recent research on topics related to:

  1. designing, planning, and testing of fishing gears used in abundance estimation;
  2. selective fishing gears for the reduction of bycatch, discard and unaccounted mortality;
  3. environmentally benign fishing gears, including innovations to mitigate ALDFG and the risk of ‘ghost fishing’ and methods.
  4. improving fuel efficiency and reduction of emission from fisheries;
  5. fish behaviour near and inside fishing gear as it relates to the previous topics; and
  6. summaries of relevant research activities by nation;

Key agenda items

Plenary presentations were delivered according to the following themes:

  • Benthic Interactions
  • Energy use
  • Selectivity
  • Multi-Use of the marine environment
  • Indicators
  • Human Behavior
  • Innovative gear
  • Innovative gear – whales

The following Topic group sessions broke into working groups to progress their respective ToRs, summaries of each Topic Group work were later presented in Plenary:

  • The use of indicators to describe and compare the performance of fishing gears (Indicators)
  • Abandoned, lost or otherwise discarded fishing gear (ALDFG)
  • Operational and technical constraints of fishing gears to support coexistence with offshore wind and open-ocean aquaculture (Multi-use)

Additionally, a focus session was held to present and discuss Sampling instruments and AI for fishing technology and fish behaviour research (Sampling)

Communications and Outreach:

  1. Meeting details were provided on the ICES/FAO website
  2. Throughout the week updates and live streaming was made available on the Face Book page of CSAR - Marine Institute
  3. ICES meeting report to be produced by September 30th 2024.

Future meeting dates and venues:

  1. The WGFTFB 2025 annual meeting will be hosted by Italy by the National Research Council (CNR), Institute for Marine Biological Resources and Biotechnology (IRBIM) in Sicily. Tentative dates 11-22 May 2025, tbc.
  2. A proposal has been received to host the next FAO meeting in 2026 in Queensland Australia. Although Australia is not a developing country, hosting the meeting in Queensland will enable bringing in developing country fisheries experts from the Pacific and South East Asia. Tentative dates 4-17 May 2026, dates and venue tbc.

ICES/FAO WGFTFB Co-Chair Rotation:

  1. At the end of 2024, co-chair Antonello Sala (Italy) will be replaced by Paul Winger (Canada).
  2. Noëlle Yochum (U.S.A.), continues until 2026
  3. Jon Lansley (on behalf of FAO), continues until further notice
Figure 1: ICES/FAO WGFTFB 2024 Annual Meeting Participants.