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Home > Management Info > TEDs & BRDs > BRDs > FAQ's

Management Information: BRDs

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about BRDs

Q1: Where are commercial shrimp trawls required to use BRDs in the Gulf and South Atlantic regions?
A1: Each net rigged for trawling and operating in the Gulf of Mexico Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) east and west of 85 degrees 30 minutes Longitude (approximately at Cape San Blas, Florida) and shoreward of the 100-fathom depth contour must be equipped with a NMFS-certified BRD. A net is rigged for trawling if it is in the water, or if it is shackled, tied or otherwise connected to a sled, door, or other device that spreads the net. A trawl net is also considered rigged if it is connected to a towrope, cable, pole, or extension either on board or attached to the shrimp trawler.

Q2: Which are NMFS-certified BRDs?
A2: The fisheye, Gulf fisheye, and Jones-Davis BRDs have been certified for all shrimp trawls operating west of the specified point in Q1, and the fisheye, Gulf fisheye, Jones-Davis, extended funnel, and expanded mesh BRDs have been approved for all shrimp trawls operating east of that point. The Gulf fisheye and the Jones-Davis are not approved for the South Atlantic region.

Q3: I seldom acquire bycatch in my shrimp net. Do I have to rig my shrimp trawler with a certified BRD?
A3: If at least 90 percent by weight of the shrimp onboard or offloaded from your trawler are royal red shrimp, your trawl nets do not have to be rigged with a certified BRD. Those trawling for species other than shrimp are not required to rig trawl nets with a BRD.

Q4: Must my try net be rigged with a certified BRD?
A4: A shrimp trawler is exempt from the requirement to have a BRD installed in a single try net with a head rope length of 16 feet or less provided the single try net is either pulled immediately in front of another net or is not connected to another net.

Q5: Must I use a BRD with a skimmer trawl or a butterfly net?
A5: No, but restricted tow times apply when using these nets. Tow times are set by individual states.

Q6: Is a certified BRD required in a rigid-frame roller trawl ?
A6: A shrimp trawler may use and have onboard up to two rigid-frame roller trawls that are 16 feet or less in length without certified BRDs. A rigid-frame roller trawl has a mouth formed by a rigid frame and a grid of rigid vertical bars, and rollers on the lower horizontal part of the frame to allow the trawl to roll over the bottom while being towed. No doors, boards, or similar devices are attached to keep open the mouth of the trawl.

Q7: Must a BRD be used in trawl nets harvesting in state coastal waters of the Gulf of Mexico and South Atlantic regions?
A7: BRDs are not required in shrimp trawl nets working in Louisiana, Mississippi or Alabama state waters, but they are required in in Texas, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, and South Carolina waters. Each state has defined requirements. Contact appropriate state agency for description of boundaries of state and federal waters.

Q8: Why does my Jones-Davis BRD include a funnel?
A8: The outside of the funnel in your Jones-Davis BRD is important. It slows down water flow between the funnel and the large mesh, allowing the bycatch to swim out. The extended funnel BRD, permitted in the south Atlantic but not in the Gulf of Mexico region, functions in the same way.

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