Faculty Advisor

McWeeny, Jennifer

Faculty Advisor

Tuler, Seth

Project Center

Boston, Massachusetts


The North Atlantic right whale (NARW) is an endangered species that is negatively impacted by entanglements in fishing gear. The goal of this project was to determine the characteristics of a rope for use in the vertical lines of lobster traps that would be safe for NARWs and effective for lobster fishing. To complete our goal, we conducted interviews with whale researchers and lobstermen in Maine. We created a multivariable assessment tool to assess potential alternatives to current lobster fishing ropes. We then assessed seven alternatives to current ropes to display the tool’s effectiveness. The New England Aquarium sponsored this project and we recommend that they continue to use our multivariable assessment tool as well as conduct further research on rope alternatives.


Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Date Accepted

October 2013

Project Type

Interactive Qualifying Project



Advisor Department

Humanities and Arts

Advisor Department

Interdisciplinary Programs