FV CB KEANE SEES BIG BENEFITS FROM DREDGEMASTER
The Dredgemaster is the world’s first wireless monitoring system for scallop dredges. The product was developed by Notus Electronics.
The CB Keane fishes out of New Jersey and is captained by Kirk Larson Jr. The steel vessel measures 78’ x 26’ and uses two scallop dredges towed.
A hydrophone communicates wirelessly to sensors on the dredge. The following information is seen in the wheelhouse: warp length, pitch angle (forward/backward tilt) and roll angle (side to side tilt) of the dredge.
Captain Larsen says “we like to see the roll around 1° to 3°.” Essentially, this ensures that the complete dredge is fishing. Captain Larsen adds “At 13°, only ¼ of the dredge might be fishing. We’ll usually tow another way to get the roll angle down.”
Pitch angle (forward/backward tilt) has been proven on many vessels to be the single largest contributor to catch rates. Captain Larsen comments, “the optimal pitch is around 9-10°. Warp out is the main adjustment.” Warp length is constantly monitored to within an accuracy of +/- 0.5 m.