Hookpod

Hookpod can save albatrosses

“Every day, hundreds of albatross die in longline fisheries. But there is a unique and exciting new solution to halt this. It's called a Hookpod. Hookpods stop birds getting caught as they dive for baits. They are effective, easy to use, safe and economic for fishermen. If every pelagic longline fishing fleet used Hookpods, I believe we can stop the accidental death of these magnificent ocean wanderers.” Sir David Attenborough

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Introduction

Reduce seabird bycatch
  • Proven to reduce seabird bycatch Download More Info Here
  • Operationally effective - Full peer reviewed publication available shortly
Hookpod Infographic
  • Fits Permanently on the fishing line. Reusable and durable, lasts up to 3 years with 99% reliability
  • Can be removed or retro fitted if required
  • Stores easily in bins with lines

How Hookpod Helps You

How Hookpod Helps You

“I really liked the equipment and I intend to continue using it. In my opinion, the hook pod is a mitigation measure more efficient than bird scaring lines, line weighting and night setting. It’s a pleasure to help to develop this technology…”

Celso de Richa Oliviera Brazilian Captain

Flexible

Designed and tested to work with a range of hook sizes and types, and varying monofilament diameters.

Easy to Use

Simple action to load, close and reset. Long-term attachment to the branchline means no additional setting or hauling time.

Marine Friendly

No waste, no need for additional lead weighting and where regulations permit there is no need for tori lines.

Saves Time and Money

Available with LED fishing light built-in, removing the need for disposable lightsticks which saves you time and money.

Efficient

Operationally effective to 1000m depth.

Long Lasting and Reliable

Durable polycarbonate design lasts up to 3 years.

Safe

Protects against injury from hooks from fly-backs.

Seabird Safe

Virtually eliminates bycatch; recommended by ACAP as best practice for the pelagic longline industry. Evidence shows a 95% reduction in bycatch when using Hookpods, compared to standard line weighting and tori lines.

ACAP Recommended Best Practice Mitigation Measure

How Hookpod Works

We designed the Hookpod with fishermen and for fishermen, to be easy to use and minimise any operational impact. There are four simple steps to setting and using Hookpods, simply click on the diagrams to see how it works.

Watch the video with Spanish, Portugese, Korean, Chinese or Japanese subtitles
  • 1

    The pod requires opening before first use to equalise the pressure in the air chamber

  • 2

    Locking collar - rotated to align groove with identation on the front

    Lug

    Pass the branch line through the locking collar and the lug

  • 3

    Rotate the locking collar to secure the line

  • 4

    Clip the baited hook into the Hookpod

  • 5

    Mainline

    Branchline

    The baited hook is disarmed and ready to set. Ensure the loaded pod is thrown clear of the propeller wash. The pressure release mechanism will open the pod once it reaches a depth of greater than 20m.

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About Us

Our Story

Hookpod Ltd was created in 2013 but our story started many years earlier. In 2005, Ben Sullivan started working with British brothers and inventors Ben & Pete Kibel to solve one of fishing’s biggest environmental challenges – seabird bycatch in longline fisheries. Working closely with the fishing industry, the team spent the next 6 years perfecting what fishermen need, a solution that fits seamlessly into the fishing operation, allowing them to catch fish and not birds.

Thank You

Along the way a lot of people have helped make Hookpod a reality. We owe a huge thanks to the fishing and conservation communities for making this all possible – and we hope that you’ll continue to be a part of our story.

Today

July 2018


The 20m opening pod is developed and production commences

July 2018


Ben Kibel is awarded the Ocean Award for Innovation 2018

May 2018


Hookpod wins the Virgin Voom 2018 Award!

April 2018


Sir David Attenborough endorses a crowdfunded project launched to equip five Brazilian longliners with pods opening at 20m to stop birds, and hopefully turtles being caught on hooks. Over £72,000 is raised

December 2017


A recommendation from New Zealand is put to WCPFC to approve the Hookpod as a stand-alone mitigation measure at the annual meeting of the Commission in Manila. Despite support from several countries this is postponed.

December 2017


Paper summarising 4 years of trials is published in the ZSL journal Animal Conservation. Download Paper

October 2017


Engineer and Hookpod designer Ben Kibel is presented with the Marsh Award for Innovative Ornithology by the BTO.

July 2017


Long term commercial use begins in New Zealand with support from Dept of Conservation and Ministry of Fisheries.

January 2017


BirdLife / RSPB commence trials with 2000 Hookpods on several vessels in Brazil.

December 2016


Hookpod in Fiji at the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission, to raise awareness of the pod. The New Zealand delegation start the lengthy process of approval for the Hookpod as a stand-alone bycatch mitigation measure.

August 2016


Government-led large scale commercial trials begin in New Zealand.

May 2016


ACAP Advisory Committee recommend Hookpod as best practice mitigation measure for the longline fleet.

January 2016


Successful completion of Kickstarter funded Australian trials – leading to the Australian delegation to the Agreement for the Conservation of Albatross and Petrels (ACAP) recommending the Hookpod as ‘best practice mitigation for the pelagic longline industry’.

August 2015


Hookpod ‘Mini’ developed and initially sent for trials in New Zealand.

April 2015


Trials of Hookpod take place in Japan.

August 2014

Product well received by fishermen and the wider industry at the
Nor-Fishing Expo.

August 2014

Kickstarter campaign generates
£113,000. Generous donations mean the start of major Australian trials and further development.

June 2013

Second series of trials in Brazil commences – indications that product may reduce turtle bycatch noted and Hookpod well received by fishermen.

April 2013

Hookpod Ltd formed - exciting times!

April 2009

Hookpod redesigned with input from fishermen and the current shape created, fitting easily into at-sea operations.

January 2008

Redesign leads to testing of tiny pod which only covers the barb of the hook… found hard to handle quickly at sea.

March 2007

First trials of the large ‘Bait-pod’ undertaken. Proven too large to work easily with fishing gear.

September 2005

Fishtek approach Ben S at RSPB, proposing to develop prototype devices to address the albatross bycatch issue in pelagic longline fisheries.

March 2001

Becky Ingham meets Ben Sullivan working on seabird bycatch in Falkland Island fisheries

The Team

Ben Kibel

Ben Kibel Director

Ben (right) is the design brain behind the Hookpod! born in Botswana in Africa, he has studied and always worked in engineering and electronics. He set up his own business Eco Electric in 1990, developing equipment to benefit the environment. In 1999, Ben started Fishtek with his brother Pete and has designed a range of innovative new products to address marine problems. He also leads on the manufacturing side, producing Hookpods from his Devon-based factory.

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Pete Kibel

Pete Kibel Director

Pete is a fishery biologist by training who established the company Fishtek in 1999 along with his brother Ben, with the aim of developing technological solutions to marine bycatch issues. Pete has worked collaboratively with a broad range of research partners around the world and is an experienced commercial businessman working in the fields of freshwater and marine science and fisheries technology.

Dave Agombar

Dave Agombar Director

Dave is a keen birdwatcher, seabird enthusiast and Director of Hookpod Ltd. He currently works with major donors at the British Trust for Ornithology and previously was Major Donors Manager for 13 years at the RSPB where he was a leading figure in setting up and funding the Albatross Task Force. Prior to this, Dave had extensive experience as a senior Director in the food supply industry.

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Dr Ben Sullivan

Dr Ben Sullivan Director

Based in Tasmania, Ben received his PHD from the University of Queensland and was later awarded a 2010 Pew Fellowship in Marine Conservation for his work to reduce seabird bycatch.
Ben has a vast amount experience working with fisheries and seabirds and has worked for the RSPB, Falklands Conservation and is also a director of Hookpod. He has been... Read More involved in the implementation of the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) International Plan of Actions for seabirds for many years. Ben is also involved with the work of the Agreement for the Conservation of Albatross and Petrels (ACAP).

Becky Ingham

Becky Ingham CEO

Becky is a marine scientist who has worked in the fisheries industry in the Southern Oceans as part of her role as Director of Falklands Conservation between 1997-2005. Becky has also worked for the RSPB, joining Hookpod shortly after its incorporation in 2013 and heading up the company now as the CEO.

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Contact Us

Get in Touch Now!

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