Reducing the whales interactions with the fishing gear during hauling.
Autoline™ is, besides being a system developed by Mustad, also an established general term signifying all deep-sea longline vessels.
The OrcaSaver™ is an innovative product reducing dramatically the orcas interactions with the fishing gear during hauling. Saving the catch for the fishermen and keeping sea mammals at safe distance.
A comparison over the season showed 30% better catches with the OrcaSaver™. This difference is significant, although variations between the vessels are found. Increased catches are a result of less eating from the line and less time spent to avoid the orcas.
Together with Dutch company SaveWave, with long experience in developing environmentally friendly products for the fishing industry, we have spent the last few years developing and testing a technological device to reduce orcas interactions with the gear.
The result is a 150 kilo unit with 18 transducers randomly sending out high-frequency pulses under the vessel during hauling. The unit is deployed from deck and hanging in cables some 8- 10 meters under the vessel during its operation. It can be switch on/off from a bridge control unit and has minimum 500 hours functionality.
The orcas react on the pulses and typically swim away and/or stay 500-1000 meters away from the unit. The product has also proved efficient on sea lions and other sea mammals normally feeding off the fishing lines.
The most extreme situation we have experienced is that one vessel lost approx. 20 full days of fishing due to the killer whales. Partly in lost catch, partly steaming away from the whales. An average catch value pr. day can be approx. USD 30.000. Using a lot of extra fuel and not catching any fish is seriously affecting the business. For sure, I can say, if the effect of the OrcaSaver™ continues – I would not leave the port for fishing in this area without the OrcaSaver™ onboard.
Mr. Leif Petter Hoddevik
Captain, F/V Argos Frøyanes, South Antartica
As an Alaskan longliner it's great to have a tool developed that responds to the increased hale predation on our world's fisheries. The OrcaSaver™ has re-opened fishing opportunity and improved profitability once lost to whale predation. I'm grateful to the manufacturer for recognizing the need in developing tools that help our industry.
Mr. Jim Hubbard
Captain & Owner, F/V Kruzof, Alaska
After our customer started with OrcaSaver™ they report to have caught up to 30% better on Greenland halibut fisheries.
Mr. Magnus Smith
Mustad's agent in Iceland
Dolphins, porpoises and killer whales use echolocation for orientation and to find fish to eat. This highly developed sense is unique for these species. Fish and other marine animals cannot hear the ultrasonic signals used in echolocation. Here lies the unique opportunity in using ultrasonic sound for influencing the killer whales behaviour. The OrcaSaver™ blocks the killer whale’s echolocation temporarily. By doing this the orcas will move away form this area and the fishing gear can be hauled in without predation from whales on the line.
Mr. Wouter Van Dam
Product Manager, Save Wave