White Fish: Conservation

Environment Food and Rural Affairs written question – answered on 24th January 2008.

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Photo of Bill Wiggin Bill Wiggin Shadow Minister (Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs pursuant to the answer of 15 January 2007, Official Report, column 1112W, on white fish: conservation, what evidence his Department has received contrary to the advice of the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea in 2004 on bass stocks; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Jonathan R Shaw Jonathan R Shaw Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Marine, Landscape and Rural Affairs) and Minister for the South East), Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

Some angling groups including the Bass Anglers' Sportsfishing Society (BASS) have submitted information to counter the advice of the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES) on bass stocks. The Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science, have assessed the information submitted by BASS and do not believe that it alters their advice to DEFRA that bass stocks appear to be fished sustainably. This is consistent with the most recent ICES advice.

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Annotations

Peter Gasson
Posted on 25 Jan 2008 8:41 pm (Report this annotation)

There is a difference between sustainability in commercially netted fish stocks and sustainability in recreational angling .
The difference is that the commercially netted fish can be of small size to supply the market whereby the small bass are of little interest to the recreational angler who wants large fish.
The only way the fish can get larger is for a reduction in commercially netted fish allowing the current stocks to attain a larger size.
The recreational angler knows this and is quite prepared to return fish alive to attain his goal.
Unfortunately trawling or gill netting rapes the sea bed and environment and is indiscriminate in its kill rate and species .We need proper conservation ideas based around a long term plan and I think commercial fishing within 3 miles of shore should be carefully cointrolled.I do not include charter boats as commercial fishers as they arte mostly true conservationists in order to maintain their future livelyhood.

Peter Gasson
Posted on 25 Jan 2008 8:41 pm (Report this annotation)

There is a difference between sustainability in commercially netted fish stocks and sustainability in recreational angling .
The difference is that the commercially netted fish can be of small size to supply the market whereby the small bass are of little interest to the recreational angler who wants large fish.
The only way the fish can get larger is for a reduction in commercially netted fish allowing the current stocks to attain a larger size.
The recreational angler knows this and is quite prepared to return fish alive to attain his goal.
Unfortunately trawling or gill netting rapes the sea bed and environment and is indiscriminate in its kill rate and species .We need proper conservation ideas based around a long term plan and I think commercial fishing within 3 miles of shore should be carefully cointrolled.I do not include charter boats as commercial fishers as they arte mostly true conservationists in order to maintain their future livelyhood.