Trawling - single and twin rigging
Most nephrops that are landed into Northern Ireland are caught by fishing vessels that tow nets, or gears to give them their proper name. Depending on how many nets a vessel tows it may be classed as a single-rig or twin-rig set up. Some larger vessels are capable of towing 3 or 4 nets at times.
Generally, the only fishing vessels that will use single-rig will be the under 12m and under 10m vessels. Many under 12m vessels (but over 10m) will routinely twin-rig as well. It would be very unusual to see an over 12m vessel using anything less than a twin-rig set up. The main factor in dictating what set up will suit a vessel is the engine power and ultimately the ability of the vessel to tow the gear behind it in varying sea states. As modern fibres have become available, gear manufactures are now able to produce lighter weight nets.
2. Fishing Grounds
Catchment areas for our fishermen are: West of Scotland, Irish Sea, Celtic Sea and NE England. Our 3 main fishing ports are Kilkeel, Ardglass and Portavogie, all of which are within a short steam from the main fishing grounds for our members.
There are varying sizes of vessels in membership with ANIFPO: The smaller vessels (under 10m) usually head out for a few hours and land their catch daily. The larger vessels in our membership (12m and over) head out on trips of 3-4 days maximum. Steaming time from fishing ground to harbour is approximately 4 hours, therefore fish is landed in fresh and pristine condition.