The aim of this study was to quantify the efficiency of different lengths of beach seine nets for each diel period in freshwater reservoirs. Only fish older than young-of-the-year were considered. Nets of 10, 20 and 50 m length ("in-nets") were tested in an enclosed area framed by a 200 m long net ( block net). The net efficiency estimate was calculated as the ratio of fish catches with the in-net and block net divided by the ratio of their respective areas. The net efficiency estimate was significantly different between day and night catches. At night, the efficiency estimate of nets depended on the size of the fish. The efficiency estimate of a 10 m long net decreased significantly in reverse correlation with fish size. A similar trend was found when using a 20 m long net. The efficiency estimate of a 50 m long net was independent of fish size. The variance in efficiency estimate between samples with a given net length was high, but decreased with longer nets. Of five species tested, only the efficiency estimate for catching bream (Abramis brama) increased significantly with the length of net. The biomass and abundance of larger fish was generally higher at night, although especially short nets exhibited a spuriously high efficiency estimate during the day, probably due to the concentrating ( chasing) effect of the hauling ropes. We therefore recommend the use of a 50 m long net, since its nighttime efficiency estimate was about 0.9 in terms of both sampling abundance and biomass. A model relating the efficiency estimate and net length was developed with the data acquired.

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