Phase I

In summary, all BRD configured experimental nets lose squid at a significant level compared to the control net. The 2 panel side-to-side treatment lets out even more squid than the other treatments. The 1 panel at the bottom treatment “collects” butterfish. The BRD configurations tested were not successful at reducing butterfish bycatch and retaining normal levels of longfin squid catch.  All experimental nets lost an unacceptable amount of squid compared to the control net.  None of the tested BRD configurations were effective at reducing butterfish bycatch.  These results do not hold promise for a gear-based solution for butterfish bycatch while maintaining longfin squid catch.  The size frequencies of the catch of butterfish and of squid are not different between the BRDs nor between the BRDs and the control net.

Phase II

The box trawl and the rope trawl catch identically at low total catches.  When the total catch was large the rope trawl was much more efficient in retaining longfin squid and much more efficient at reducing bycatch (with the exception of butterfish). When catches are large the box trawl is less efficient at both capturing squid and reducing overall bycatch (not including butterfish). At large total catches the rope trawl was the better net for fishing efficiently for squid and for reducing bycatch of other species (particularly summer flounder, fourspot, monkfish, red hake, American shad, and whiting). The ANOVA was significant for mean length of squid, indicating that the rope trawl catches slightly larger squid too.