Fisherman pleads guilty to 39 albatross deaths

16125497A commercial fishing boat skipper who caused the death of 39 albatrosses refused to use bird-scaring devices because he had “nothing but f…… trouble with the things”, a court has been told. Daniel Joseph Smyth, 37, admitted in the Greymouth District Court on Tuesday to being the master of a vessel that failed to comply with seabird mitigation measures by ignoring instructions to use a streamer line while fishing with surface longlines. The Ministry for Primary Industries’ (MPI) legal counsel William Jennings said Smyth was fishing for southern bluefin tuna off the West Coast in April and failed to use a streamer line, a mandatory device designed to scare birds away from baited hooks. Read the story here 14:03