Where It All Began: A Brief History

I love the tradition, skill and hard work involved with fishing. Over the past 30 years I have been involved with purse seining more than any other form of fishing, and now it may be my favorite way to see fish sustainably harvested.

Whether it be the spectacular world of Alaskan salmon seining, or chasing sardines or anchovies across seas or oceans, there is always something to appreciate about the hunt, and, if everything has come together well, the capture of such a valuable natural resource.

Over the years, my role has changed from being an eager young crew member on deck, to helping fishermen get used to using sonars in the early days of herring seining in Alaska, to now, when I'm able to guide some fishermen, or fleet owners, through the process of putting together a balanced and efficient purse seine operation.

Technology and Collaborations: Behind The Scenes

My main focus has been on smaller vessels, from 10 meters up to 35 meters. (32ft to 115ft) but I know many of the things I have learned about a nets performance applies to larger seine vessels as well. 

I have found that technology plays a huge role in this industry, whether it is the electronics, the machinery or the netting, lines and hardware used in the seine. As one of the first to be involved with the introduction of Dyneema (UHMWPE) netting and lines to seine nets, it has been a huge challenge working with a fiber so fundamentally different from the traditional nylon, or polyester, that performance can be affected in dramatic and sometimes unexpected ways.

Getting baseline information is an important first step to take before a decision to change any one part of the seine vessels system, which is why I regularly use a lot net sensors, as well as WiFi load cells and WiFi hydraulic system pressure and temperature sensors.

Lastly, I have experimented with, and used many different types of netting and lines and I’ve worked with many types of sonar. I believe I can help anyone thinking of building a seine net using new materials or guide someone in a suitable choice of sonar.

The Driving Force Behind Gannet Nets

Since I believe in data driven design, I have gone to great lengths to gather data from various aspects of a purse seine fishing 'system', a system which involves the vessel, the machinery, the hydraulics, the electronics and the seine net itself.

Much of my time is spent working along side manufacturers all over the world, for machinery, electronics, netting and lines needed in the operation of a purse seine vessel, while continuing to collaborate with captains to help design seine nets suited to their boat and machinery. 

The Months To Come

As I add to this site over the coming months and beyond, I hope to explain in more detail about the many options available when it comes to netting and lines, sounders and sonars. 

If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to email me at david@gannetnets.com.