The Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation was a sponsor of the International Circle Hook Symposium held in Miami, Florida from May 4th to 6th, 2011. The event attracted an international audience of 180 scientists, resource managers and environmentalists, and featured a keynote addresses by Dr. Steven Cooke of Carleton University, Canada, entitled, “Are the benefits of circle hooks in recreational fisheries overstated or understated – a scientific and stakeholder perspective.” Dr. John Graves of the Virginia Institute of Marine Science, College of William & Mary, presented, “The conservation benefits of circle hooks in marine commercial and recreational fisheries: insights from studies of pelagic fishes”. Individuals from 20 countries contributed 80 oral and poster presentations in secessions on Circle Hooks and Commercial Fisheries, Circle Hooks and Recreational Fisheries, Circle Hooks and Sharks, Circle Hooks and Sea Turtle By-catch, Circle Hooks and Human Dimensions, and Circle Hooks, Assessment and Management.   

While some of the information presented made it clear that circle hooks may not be the fix in all instances, in many cases they can have a huge conservation benefit to by-catch without a negative impact on catch rates of target species.

 

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