Welcome to the Seafish Gear Database

The Seafish Gear Database gives easy access to a wide range of information on commercial fishing gears used in UK fisheries and in many fisheries worldwide.  It includes information on many of the selectivity and discard reduction options that can be used with these gears. There is also a ‘Technical Section’ that contains more detailed information on these gears and selective devices to help fishers to rig and optimise the operation their gear.

The Seafish Gear Database also gives access to a vast range of scientific and technical reports relating to trials that have been undertaken involving fishing gears, selective devices and discard reduction practices.

Gear Frequently Asked Questions

Quick Search

The search can be filtered by using the drop down menus to choose gears, selective devices, species or technical information

Featured Profiles

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Bag net

A bag net has a long vertical wall of netting, often several hundred metres long, running at right angles to the shoreline that is intended to interrupt the natural swim of the fish and direct them along it away from the shore and into a series of traps.

Acoustic deterrents

A device that emits an acoustic signal to deter cetaceans from approaching fishing gear. Sometimes referred to as 'pingers'.

Introduction to the Gear Database

This database is designed for use by anybody who would like to learn more about any form of fishing gear from pupils doing school projects to young prospective fishermen, environmental groups, fishery managers and legislators right through to experienced fishermen who will find the various levels of technical information useful.

The Gear and Selectivity Device profiles can be searched by:

Gear Types

This database has been developed to give a wide range of people answer some of the many questions often asked about commercial fishing gear in UK. It gives:

  • A detailed of description of each gear including a basic illustration
  • An indication of what species of fish are generally targeted by each gear
  • Brief comment on its environmental credentials
  • List of selectivity measures and devices commonly used with the gear
  • Links to technical reports and further information on each gear
  • Photographs and video clips of the gear if they are available
  • Suggestions for accessing further information

Selectivity Devices

The extensive list of selectivity and discard reduction measures can be found by using the Quick Search on the home page or by scrolling the full list of selectivity options on the gears page.

The page on each selectivity device gives:

  • A detailed description and illustration of the device
  • Details of its design and construction
  • A list of similar devices
  • A list of fishing gear that it can be used in
  • A indication of its effectiveness at retaining certain common species
  • An indication of its effectiveness at releasing certain species
  • Links to technical reports and further information on each device
  • Photographs and video clips of the device if they are available.
  • Suggestions for accessing further information

Technical Information

This section of the database contains much of the material that is regular sent out to industry, mainly the catching sector, to answer some of the many enquiries that Seafish Gear Technologists deal with as part of their work.

Gear Resources

Navigate to our Publications to see a full library of resources for the industry at large.