Fishery Type


Ocean Region

Northern Atlantic Ocean, Northern Pacific Ocean

Target Species

Dungeness Crab, Snow Crab, Groundfish, American Lobster

Bycatch Species

Marine Mammals

Pots and traps fisheries use buoy lines (high-strength ropes) attached to pots and traps to mark gear on the ocean bottom. Buoy lines that extend from the trap on the seafloor to the surface sometimes cause marine mammals and sea turtles to become entangled often leading to severe injury or death. Ropeless (On-Demand) pot/trap systems are designed to be deployed without surface buoy lines in the water column and therefore nearly entirely reduce the risk of entanglement for ETP species. Most of these systems utilize an acoustic release device that can be activated from the boat which will either release a buoy line or inflate a float bag attached to the pots/traps in the water. The pots/traps can then be retrieved by fishers. Early-stage programs in South Africa, Canada, and the United States have demonstrated that ropeless units increase gear retrieval success in real fishing applications.


Ashored Innovations

MOBI (Modular Ocean Based Instrument)

Ashored’s MOBI (Modular Ocean Based Instrument) coils and contains a fisher’s line on the ocean floor until they return to the area to collect the gear. MOBIs are activated with an acoustic release (with a passive backup timer) and can be triggered to surface by an on-vessel MOBI Commander just as the vessel arrives back in the area of visual proximity.

Desert Star

Buoy and rope acoustic release system attached to a single trap or trawl. When activated, the buoy line floats to the service allowing the pots/traps to be retrieved. Complete systems can be purchased that include a deck box and single acoustic release to get started.

Edge Tech

Edgetech’s system consists of a buoy line released from a cage designed to model a crab or lobster trap. A combination of a BLEAT unit (deck or portable) and transducer (hull-mounted or dunking) are needed to initiate the acoustic release for trap/trawl retrieval. Multiple acoustic releases can be controlled from single deck box or transducer. Trap/trawl location is marked and uploaded to a cloud database with trap location available to anyone within 5 miles of the trap with the Trap Tracker app.

Lobster Lift

Not currently available for purchase but are partnering with fishers to test the gear on a loan basis. Contact if interested in Massachusettes and interested in trialling the LobsterLift.

Ropeless Riser

Airbag retrieval system that can be attached to existing traps or act as standalone “anchors” for trawls. Due to available modifications, there is virtually no limits on gear configuration or fishing depth. Units can be configured to provide real-time, seafloor trap locations with unique ID and trawl-type information.


Float bag acoustic release system that floats the attached pot/trap to the surface. Attached to the float bat is satellite tracking buoy that then transmits live-location details to the boat to ensure that the float bag is located. Each vessel requires a transducer to activate the release mechanism.

Sub Sea Sonics

Time Release and Acoustic Release Products. Timed release does not need any additional equipment, acoustic release still not officially released.