OK, OK, calm down – what’s up?
The Devon and Severn Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority consultation on proposed netting permit byelaws closes on Thursday.
Hmmm, riveting stuff. Tell me more – yawn.
Well, the consultation proposes banning netting in a massive chunk of the mouth of the Severn and loads of estuaries and rivers in Devon, in order to help bass, salmon and sea trout stocks recover and to improve the recreational angling experience:
“Pre-consultation has indicated that netting (coastal and within estuaries) is cited as a negative factor on the catching expectations of many leisure anglers. In addition, stakeholders and members of the general public have indicated that estuaries and in particular ‘bass nursery areas’, should be afforded additional protection from netting activity.”
This is a real breakthrough – the IFCAs sometimes talk a good game about the importance of recreational angling, and then deliver nothing. But Devon & Severn IFCA are walking the walk, so we need to show them that there is strong support from recreational anglers for these proposals. If we can get these proposals agreed, it will set a precedent for the rest of the IFCAs (including Cornwall IFCA, who are starting a bye-law consultation shortly) and put pressure on them to follow suit.
If we don’t pull our fingers out right now, the risk is that the commercial fishermen will out-number us in the consultation and get these proposals overturned.
OK, I am all ears, so what do I need to do?
Send an email tomorrow (Wednesday) or Thursday at the latest to: IFCAbyelaws@marinemanagement.org.uk and email@example.com
What should I say?
Entirely up to you, but here is a suggestion:
* I am a recreational sea angler.
* I am very concerned about the state of bass, salmon and sea trout stocks.
* We urgently need to protect juvenile bass, salmon and sea trout in order to regenerate the stocks to safe levels as quickly as possible.
* Stopping netting in rivers and estuaries is vitally important to help juvenile bass, salmon and sea trout survive to maturity and reproduce.
* I therefore whole-heartedly support the Netting Permit Byelaw 2016 proposed by the Devon & Severn IFCA.
Thanks in advance for getting involved and making a difference. If you don’t, who will?