‘Super netting’ or ‘super trawling’ is the term used to describe a type of fishing practice whereby large fishing boats (super trawlers) will haul enormous nets (up to 300 metres long) through the ocean hoping to scoop-up all they can in order to maximise their catch. These fishing boats often drag these enormous nets along the ocean floor (damaging ocean beds, reefs and marine habitat) or they tow the nets suspended through the water for MILES. Another method of “super-netting” is to tow a net between two boats acting as a giant scoop.
This practice does not target a particular species of fish, and because of the sheer enormity of the nets, animals such as; dolphins, seals, turtles, sharks, octopus, albatross, coral and crustaceans are indiscriminately hauled onto the boats and left to die without having any purpose for sale. This also means that endangered species are killed during the process, which is highly controversial and widely criticised for being un-ethical and wholly un-sustainable.
Some super trawlers can haul up to 250 tonne ( 250,000 kilograms) of marine catch A DAY.
Efforts have been made to stop super-trawling within some countries such as Australia; where the banning of large fishing vessels of over 130m in length from operating in their waters was implemented. But experts warn that targeting a boats length is not an accurate way to stamp out the practice, as smaller boats with slightly smaller holds (onboard catch storage facilities) can still kill and catch an enormous amount of marine life.
As the global population continues to grow, and developing nations have an increased appetite for protein and meats, fishing and fishing practises are increasingly being pulled in two directions between conservation and consumer. Raising awareness about where fish and marine products comes from, and how it was caught, is a good first step.
If this article interests you, take a look at these: