Fishermen of Andhra Pradesh State are using stake nets for exploitation of fishery in the intertidal regions. It is one of the oldest used gear in backwaters. These nets are fabricated with very small mesh and exploit maximum number of juvenile fish. The codend mesh size of this net is 5-8 mm. Fishermen have to spend more time for fabrication of nets and to reach stakes to tie the nets.
Central Institute of Fisheries Technology (ICAR-CIFT), Visakhapatnam Research Center has developed a foldable trap to exploit fishery resources in backwaters.
In this design, four rectangular shaped plastic coated galvanized-iron (GI) square mesh of 25 mm mesh size are fixed to a frame made of 6 mm GI rod. These four rectangular pieces are fixed with clamps and are arranged in a box shape and tied with HDPE twine. The length x width x height of the trap is 1 x 0.5 x 0.4 m. An iron mesh piece of 0.5 x 0.4 m is carved into funnel shape and tied in front as entrance. Other end of the frame having 0.5 m length and fitted with 25 mm mesh HDPE webbing is attached and closed as codend. When put to operation, shellfish and finfish were found entering through the funnel shaped mouth into the trap. Juveniles escaped through 25 mm square mesh of the trap and the adult fish remained in the last part of the trap.
The traps are foldable, easy to fabricate, easy to operate and durable. To maintain the ecosystem biodiversity and to conserve small juvenile fish and prawn, these foldable iron mesh traps are very much useful to exploit the fishery in backwaters and it serves as a substitute to the traditional stake nets.