Exanatory Notes

     1. This report is a result of a joint survey conducted by the Department of Fisheries of Brunei Darussalam and the team from Training Department of SEAFDEC in 2004. The background information and current status of different fishing gears were based on the annual fishery statistics(unpublished) in 2004.

     2. In this report, the classification of fishing gear for Brunei Darussalam is presented with the description of each group. This was based on the system presented by FAO entitled “Definition and Classification of Fishing Gear Categories.” The classification of fishing gear is presented below.

     3. Illustrations
          3.1. The horizontal length of surrounding nets, purse seines and fill nets is drawn according to the length of the float line, and the vertical depth according to the fully stretched netting. In the case of gill nets with sidelines,the depth is drawn according to their length. The width of netting panels or sections of trawl gear is drawn according to half the stretched netting, and the depth or length according to fully stretched netting. Some gears are shown by schematic or partly perspective overall sketches, with dimensions indicated where applicable.
          3.2. The general outline of drawings such as the rig of the complete gear and detailed drawings of components are mostly not to scale, but the main dimensions are given.

     4. The dimensions are only given in meters (m) and millimeters (mm).The units are not indicated but can easily be recognized, as follows:

     5. Meters: Length of footrope, headlines, floatlines, etc., used with one decimal (e.g., 5.2, 98.7)

     6. Millimeters: Mesh size (stretched, diameters of ropes, floats, etc., used without a point or with one decimal only (e.g. 12, 525, or 1.2, 38.2)

     7. The mesh size (in millimeters, mm) is understood to be the distance between the centers of the two opposite knots in the same mesh when fully stretched.

     8. The number of meshes in a straight row along the edges indicates the width and length or depth of net panels or sections.


FAD = Fish aggregating device also known as lawa-lawa in local name
Hp = horsepower (the capacity of the vessel engine)
GPS = Global positioning satellite
LOA = Length of Overall (length of the vessel from the bow to the stern)
PA = Polyamide
PE = Polyethylene
Nm = Nautical miles




Fishing gears and methods

     Various methods to catch fish and other aquatic resources, with or without a gear, have always been practiced in many countries including Brunei Darussalam. Although the fundamental principles, i.e. filtering the water, luring and outwitting the prey and hunting, are the basis for most of the fishing gears and methods used even today, gears and methods have changed significantly over time, especially with the invention of synthetic materials and electronic gadgets, and their capture efficiency is obviously hardly comparable to that of prehistoric times.

     A fishing gear is the tool with which aquatic resources are captured, whereas the fishing method is how the gear is used. Gear also includes harvesting organisms when no particular gear (tool) or boat is involved. Furthermore, the same fishing gear can be used in different ways by different fishers. A common way to classify fishing gears and methods is based on the principles of how the fishes or other preys are captured and, to a lesser extent, on the gear construction or gear materials used.

     Following FAO’s definition and classification, the main categories of fishing gears in Brunei Darussalam are as follows:

(1) Surrounding nets
     The net is roughly rectangular in shape without a distinct bag. It is set vertically in water to surround the school of fish, generally of pelagic nature. The nets are subdivided into three categories: one-boat seine, two-boat seine; and surrounding net without purse line. The one-boat purse seine is commonly used in Brunei Darussalam waters.

(2) Seine nets
     Seine nets are cone-shaped net with two wings wherein the wings are normally larger than those of trawl nets. The net is pulled towards a stationary boat or onto a beach.

(3) Trawl

     A conical bag-shaped net with two or more wings, pulled by one or two boats for a period, to catch mainly demersal fish or other aquatic animals that live directly on, or stay near the seabed. The trawl is subdivided into three major types: bottom trawl, pair trawl and beam trawl.

(4) Lift net
     A sheet of net, usually square, but may sometimes be conical, is mounted either by several rods and ropes, or on a frame and is either at the bottom or in mid-water for some time and then lifted to trap the fish lying above it.

(5) Falling gear
     The gear is usually a cone-shaped net that is dropped to cover aquatic animals and trap them. Generally it is hand-operated in shallow waters but some are operated from a boat like the stick-held cast net for catching squid.

(6) Gill nets
     Gill nets are curtain-like net that are fitted with sinkers on the lower end and floats on the upper end and are set transversely to the path of migrating fish. Fish trying to make their way through the net wall are entangled, gilled or enmeshed in the mesh.

(7) Scoop nets
     A bag-shaped net with fixed or variable opening and is usually operated in shallow waters. The gear catching mechanism is done by filtering a certain volume of water and trapping the fish into it in a scooping manner.

(8) Traps
     The gear is set or stationed in the water for a certain period to trap moving fish in the water. Trapping is made with the use of a non-return valve fitted in the entrance of the gear. The gear may or may not include a netting material.

(9) Hook and Line
     The gear generally consists of line(s) and hook(s) to which artificial or edible baits are attached to lure and catch fishes or other aquatic animals.

(10) Other Fishing Gears And Methods
     This group covers a variety of fishing gears and methods not classified with the above groups such as the use of gleaning along the shore for shellfish, seaweed or fish.

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