Dive to remove deadly trawl net

12 April 2017

Conservation divers Fathoms Free have recovered a deadly trawl net threatening marine life off the Cornish coast.

The net, recovered using a new rib boat funded by World Animal Protection, was securely fastened to a wreck - the divers believe it may have been aboard the boat when it sank.

Underwater footage credit to Natallia Paliakova of Fathoms Free

Lost fishing litter a danger to marine life

Lost or discarded fishing net, lines and pots, also known as ghost gear, cause immense suffering to marine life like seals, whales and porpoises. Animals are often entangled or caught, causing injuries and infections, constrictions and drowning.

Many seals threatened in Cornwall

Chiara Vitali, Campaigns Manager at World Animal Protection UK said, “We saw lots of seals in the area near the wreck and this net would have posed a real risk to them - so it’s great to see the divers were able to pull this out using the new boat.”

Fishing litter can be recycled

Rob Thompson, Founder of Fathoms Free said, “Previously we were only able to dive from the shore so it’s fantastic that we could retrieve this net with the new boat. We will now send the net off to Plastics Global to recycle it into pellets, which we then buy back to turn into items such as kayaks.

Divers in a dinghy heading out to sea

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"We saw lots of seals in the area near the wreck and this net would have posed a real risk to them - so it’s great to see the divers were able to pull this out using the new boat."

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