Nanaimo Daily News – Student, VIU prof gain acclaim

Page: A5, Section: News  

A student under the supervision of a Vancouver Island University professor has gained national attention for his work for a sustainable prawn fishery.

The focus of Brett Favaro’s studies, made in concert with VIU fisheries and aquaculture professor Stefanie Duff, is to reduce bycatch found in prawn traps to keep the $35-million prawn fishery sustainable.

His research has earned him acclaim from a number of agencies and has brought in grants and an opportunity to share data in Australia. Favaro’s innovative technologies have international appeal, Duff said.

“Brett will be taking ideas created here at VIU and at Simon Fraser University regarding sustainable practices in prawn fishing to Australia in exchange for time to learn about their practices,” explained Duff.

Favaro was awarded $25,000 in funding from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council in 2008 and has attracted support from the Mitacs Group, the Pacific Prawn Fishers Association and the B.C. government.

He developed a more efficient trap that excludes rock fish and a video recording device called a Trapcam to observe activity on the ocean floor.