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Bycatch Reduction Engineering Program (BREP)

The mission of the BREP is to develop technological solutions and investigate changes in fishing practices designed to minimize bycatch of fish (including sponges and deep sea and shallow, tropical corals) and protected species (including marine mammals, seabirds, and sea turtles) as well as minimize bycatch injury and mortality (including post-release injury and mortality).

2014 Call for Proposals

In early 2014, NOAA Fisheries' Office of Sustainable Fisheries accepted applications for the BREP. Approximately $2.5 million could be made available for projects that address bycatch research as identified below:
  • Developing innovative and effective technologies, gear modifications, and/or improved fishing practices in commercial and recreational fisheries to reduce bycatch impacts. Proposals that specifically reduce impacts to protected species, highly migratory species, or fish stocks that are overfished or experiencing overfishing are particularly encouraged.
  • Reducing post-release mortality, including barotrauma and predation, in commercial and recreational fisheries including target and non-target species.
  • Determining the degree and nature of interactions, and developing techniques to reduce interactions, between fishing gears and corals, sponges, and other structure-forming invertebrates.

Pre-proposals were due by March 21 with full applications due by April 30, 2014. The application period has closed, and submitted proposals are now undergoing technical review.

For more information, download the call for proposals or contact Derek Orner, National Bycatch Coordinator.

2013 Grant Awards

In September 2013, NOAA Fisheries awarded 16 grants totaling nearly $2.4 million under the BREP. The grants support key partners in the research and development of innovative approaches and strategies for reducing bycatch, seabird interactions, and post-release mortality in federally managed fisheries. Read more.

2012 BREP Report to Congress

In 2012, NOAA Fisheries allocated nearly $2.5 million in competitive grants to non-federal researchers working with U.S. fishermen to develop improved fishing practice and innovative gear technologies. The 2012 BREP Report to Congress highlights the status of this innovative research. Read the report and factsheet below. In addition, learn more about BREP-funded research by reading about the Oregon C.R.A.B. Project.


2012 BREP Report to Congress 2012 BREP Report to Congress Factsheet
2012 Report to Congress Factsheet

Past BREP Reports to Congress

2011 BREP Report to Congress 2010 BREP Report to Congress 2009 BREP Report to Congress 2008 BREP Report to Congress
2011 Report   2010 Report 2009 Report 2008 Report