The Problem

Lost fishing gear has global economic and environmental impacts on the ocean, as well as the people and industries that rely on it. Despite fishermen’s best efforts, fishing gear is lost due to many uncontrollable forces including storms and strong currents. Lost gear continues fishing indiscriminately—both target species and bycatch—without being harvested. This ‘ghost gear’ depletes the current biomass, reduces future harvests and fishing industry revenue.

640,000 metrics tons of fishing gear are lost in the ocean every year

Unrealized harvest due to ghost fishing costs the industry billions of dollars

Valuable resources, such as time, fuel and money, are wasted searching for and replacing lost gear

Our Solution

Blue Ocean Gear’s Smart Buoy technology tracks fishing gear at all times, including traps and nets that are far offshore. These buoys alert fishermen of their new location when gear has moved too far, allowing for direct retrieval rather than aimless searching. A wide variety of data from the buoys can be used to help ocean businesses run more efficient and cost-effective operations, both on- and off-shore.

Improve fleet costs and efficiency by preventing gear loss, reducing time and fuel spent searching for missing gear

Optimize fleet operations through data analytics that help identify seasonal trends

Lets fishermen assist marine mammal rescue teams by providing coordinates of gear that may be entangled

Example of how Blue Ocean Gear’s Smart Buoys can locate crab traps.

Animation by Heather Reilly