Drift nets are free-floating nets used in oceans to snare fish by their gills. Each net can measure up to 50 feet (15 meters) deep and 55 miles (89 kilometers) long. Because drift nets are not selective, many fish and marine mammals are trapped in them. Those unwanted by fishermen, such as sharks, turtles, seabirds, and dolphins, are removed from the nets and thrown back, dead, into the ocean. Drift nets are an extraordinarily destructive fishing technology.
Ecological damage caused by drift nets
Drift nets are used in all of the world's major fishing regions, and the snaring of unintended marine species is always a serious problem. This is especially true in the commercial fishing of swordfish, tuna, squid, and salmon. During the late 1980s, drift nets were estimated to have killed as many as one million dolphins and porpoises annually. In addition, millions of seabirds, tens of thousands of seals, thousands of sea turtles, and untold numbers of sharks and other large species of fish were accidentally snared and killed.
Great lengths of drift nets and other fishing nets are lost at sea every year, especially during severe storms. Because the nets are made of materials that do not degrade or break down easily, they continue to snare fish and marine mammals underwater for many years. It is unknown how many are killed as a result of these so-called "ghost nets."
In response to mounting concerns about the harmful nature of drift nets, the United Nations banned the use of those nets longer than 1.5 miles (2.5 kilometers) in 1993. Although this regulation would not eliminate the snaring of unintended species, it would reduce the amount killed by as much as two-thirds. Unfortunately, there has been a great deal of resistance from the fishing industry and fishing nations to this regulation. Many fisheries continue to use much longer nets.
"Drift Net." UXL Encyclopedia of Science. . Encyclopedia.com. (June 19, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/science/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/drift-net-1
"Drift Net." UXL Encyclopedia of Science. . Retrieved June 19, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/science/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/drift-net-1
Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).
Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.
Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:
Modern Language Association
The Chicago Manual of Style
American Psychological Association
- Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
- In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.
drift net (also drift·net) • n. a large net for herring and similar fish, kept upright by weights at the bottom and floats at the top and allowed to drift with the tide. DERIVATIVES: drift net·ter n. drift net·ting n.
"drift net." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Encyclopedia.com. (June 19, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/drift-net
"drift net." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Retrieved June 19, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/drift-net