202111 May
Seabird saving device makes finals of European Inventor Award 2021
General News

The UK creators of Hookpod, a low-cost device that prevents the deaths of seabirds during longline fishing, have been named finalists in the ‘SMEs’ category of the European Inventor Award 2021. To mitigate the problem and make commercial fishing more targeted and sustainable, British brothers Ben and Pete Kibel, an engineer and fisheries biologist respectively, developed Hookpod, which is a small, reusable device that encapsulates baited hooks until they sink to a depth inaccessible to seabirds. It involves the use of lines that are tens of kilometres long, carrying thousands of hooks that catch large numbers of marine animals other than those targeted. “The design challenge we faced was in making something that is bulletproof in harsh environments and can be mass produced for just a few dollars.” According to EPO, the Hookpod is a clear, polycarbonate capsule that is clipped over the points and barbs of longline fishing hooks. “The Kibel brothers have combined ingenuity with their commitment to the environment to develop a solution that protects vulnerable marine life,” said EPO President António Campinos.

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