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A Case of Innovation

In the mid-1990s, New Zealand tuna fisherman Dave Kellian decided he could eliminate the seabird issue in his fishery if he set baits 10 metres or more below the surface. An early experiment with a 'raincoat bag' developed into a bait setting capsule which won the WWF Smart gear competition in 2009.

Who would have thought an experiment with a raincoat, some rocks and bait could lead to an invention that could save thousands of seabirds?! The story got attention and 'Taking the Bait' was published in the NZ 2012 technology curriculum.

Dave Kellian is a fisher and an inventor. One day, he and his crew were throwing pilchards (a type of fish) over the side of their boat to attract tuna. But seabirds kept stealing the pilchards from the water. To thwart the birds, the crew wrapped the pilchards in a raincoat, added some rocks for extra weight, and used a rope to lower them under the water.


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