Commercial Fishing: The Different Methods They Use and How


Commercial fishing is considered to be one form of cruelty to animals on a massive level because they kill a huge amount every year. The amount of killing is bigger compared to other industries and this is why it has caught the attention of many who are against it.

The ships they use for commercial fishing have the size of a football field and their equipment is very advanced so they can track fish properly.

These big vessels can be out fishing in the sea up to 6 months enabling it to carry tons of fish because they have very large freezers and compartments.

You will know about the different methods below:

Long-line fishing


This is one of the most popular methods that is being used today. This is when ships release as long as 75 miles of fishing line with thousands of hooks with baits. The ships drag the hooks behind them with different depths or they are kept afloat by buoys that they use, which is usually done overnight.

This will bring in animals overnight so they can have a free meal. When they get hooked, they either bleed until they die or drown in the water. They struggle for hours overnight and get reeled in the next morning.

The baited line of the boat pull in yellowfin tuna and swordfish because they each weigh a lot. The fishers have pickaxes that they sink into the sides, fins, and eyes of the fish. It could also be any other part that will let them pull the animal and get it on board without the hook getting ripped from the fish.

Bottom trawlers

These bottom trawlers are targeted towards orange cod, and haddock. They use nets that are gigantic in size which they pull along the floor of the ocean not missing out on any rocks, coral pieces, and any fish along the path.

Large metal plates are being dragged along the ground which are placed at each end so that all of the creatures that are resting will start to move and eventually get caught in the net. This method will really scrape the ocean floor and some people say it is similar to cutting a lot of trees in the forest.

The first time that bottom-trawlers were introduced, they were only used in certain parts of the ocean that have sediment floors that are soft because fish are able to escape when corals and rocks tear a hole in the net. They now make bottom-trawlers with big wheels that are placed at the bottom of the net covering the edges.

Wheels that are made of heavy metal roll along the floor of the ocean to crush everything it comes across, but the nets do not touch the floor of the ocean so they won’t get torn. This innovation has increased the chances of catching fish and other creatures that are being protected by where they hide.

Slaughtering on the deck

Commercial Fishing: The Different Methods They Use and How

Image credit: by BigStockPhoto

It doesn’t matter what kind of method was used to catch them because if the fish still manages to survive even after it has gone through a painful journey at the surface, a lot of them already have gills that get cut and they get tossed in ice so they will experience suffocation or bleeding to death.

This is indeed a very harsh way of killing coldblooded animals because it can take a while before they fully die due to bleeding. According to research, it can take up to 15 minutes before they die which gives them agony before life exits their body.

Using purse seines

This method uses purse seine which is a net that is really used for capturing tuna, but it can also be used for catching other types of fish. The public was enraged by this method because even dolphins have a chance of getting caught. On the other hand, purse seine is really capable of catching a lot of tuna which are also as intelligent as dolphins.


In order to catch tuna successfully, the fishers follow the tracks of dolphins because they are usually within the presence of tuna, and then they drop the net to gather the tuna. They will clinch the edge of the nets together so they can suspend a lot of tuna and they close up the net. In case they still have life even if they are already at the boat’s deck, tuna, haddock, and cod get slaughtered to death.

Using gill nets

The size of these nets range from 200 feet to 1 mile long have weights at the bottom and then it gets held upright by putting floats on top to create walls that can kill fish. The net is unidentifiable to fish, unless it has a bigger mesh size compared to the fish; they end up getting stuck and when they make an attempt to back out, they get caught by the gills or fills which brings them to suffocation.

Some fish really try to struggle so they can get out, but they end up bleeding to death instead. These gill nets are sometimes left for days without anyone watching them making the fish that’s been trapped go through days of suffering. A lot of them bleed to death until the shipping vessel comes to collect them.

The ones that are still alive until they reach the deck experience getting ripped from the net using the fisher’s hand and lose their breath, or they get cut open even if they still have life. The ones that have been caught from the deeper part of the ocean go through decompression and due to extreme pressure, their stomachs get forced to come out of their mouths.

These are the methods that fishers use to catch fish commercially and it is important that you know about them because you consume them. It has been done for years and maybe in the long there will be kind methods of commercially catching fish.

About the author


Hey there, I'm Lisa, founder and editor in chief here at Recreation Space. We found fitness through recreational activities. And we want to share it with you. We believe in empowering people with knowledge to make smarter, healthier choices in their lives.

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