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"WESMAR helps us catch fish"

Bay Islander Fisheries out of Newport, Oregon, has long used WESMAR equipment. This family-owned business is run by Kurt Cochran, who started fishing with his father at a very young age and by 18 was already a Captain

We asked “why WESMAR?” Cochran answered: “WESMAR helps us catch fish.”

WESMAR is “affordable, reliable and the
service is phenomenal,”
said Cochran, who has a long history of studying and using electronics and nets. Each of his three boats is equipped with electronic equipment and with nets designed to meet the quotas and otherchallenges facing today’s fishing companies. This knowledge and experience have positioned him as someone whose opinion has value to companieslike WESMAR as well as to other fishermen.

At age 22 Cochran purchased the 91-foot trawler F/V Marathon. Today, he and his wife Kimberlee also own the 80-foot trawler New Life, and the 87-foot trawler, F/V Bay Islander as well. Kurt has fished for along time. He is an experienced sonar operator and his modern outlook toward equipment gives him credibility in the industry.

After years of running the boats, Kurt and Kimberlee now manage the operation from shore. Their son, Keith is Captain on one of the boats, along with many other long-time employees, who are on the boats today.

The 91-foot Fishing Trawler MARATHON is one of three boats owned and operated by Bay Island Fisheries of Newport Oregon, and each uses WESMAR trawl systems fishing Alaskan waters for cod, sole, rock fish and pollock. All three boats fish primarily in Alaskan waters for cod, sole, rock fish and pollock. All three have a WESMAR trawl system on board. Each vessel runs continuously 10 months a year, with a Captain and a crew of 3-4. With years of juggling family andfishing Kurt and Kimberlee bring a unique perspective to the fishing business.

“I’m happy with the WESMAR units...Personally like the high frequency system (WESMAR’s TCS385-500 kHz.). With it we can identify dispersed and difficult-to-distinguish fish. We use it on the smaller Pelagic trawl nets at 25-27 fathoms on the net opening, and on all our non-pelagic trawls...and it works really well.”

“We are able to see the different shapes and behaviors. This helps us determine what depth to run the net. We can see feed much better so we can drop the net to avoid getting the wrong species,” said Cochran. He says he is adding WESMAR’s portable lights on the excluders.