Monday, 26 May 2014

Bottom trawling causes long-term damage to sea bed

Bottom trawling causes long-term, deep-sea biological desertification of the sedimentary seabed ecosystems, and threatens their biodiversity scientists reveal.

A recent study focused on assessing the impact of trawling on the meiofauna (small organisms, between 30 and 500 micrometers) living in marine sediments in the fishing grounds of the continental slope, about 500m deep. The results reveal that trawling has led to meiofauna being 80 per cent less abundant in this area, and its biodiversity 50 per cent lower than similar areas where no trawling occurs.

Pere Puig, researcher at the ICM-CSIC who participated in the study said: "The dragging of the gear on the seabed lifts and removes fine particles of sediment, but it also resuspends small organisms living in the sediment that constitute the base of the food chain at these depths." He warns that if deep trawling continues at the same level, the seabed may end up becoming barren, “if the constant loss of superficial sediment endures over time".

No comments:

Post a Comment

You only need to enter your comment once! Comments will appear once they have been moderated. This is so as to stop the would-be comedian who has been spamming the comments here with inane and often offensive remarks. You know who you are!

Related Posts with Thumbnails