2016 News Archive

Posted on 1st December 2016

THIS IS AN ARCHIVE OF ALL NEWS ITEMS PUBLISHED IN THE 2016 CALENDAR YEAR

 

Please note some files have been removed from these news items to free up space on our website.
 



DECEMBER 2016: SARDINE STRANDING


There has been considerable public interest and concerns raised about the stranding over the weekend of large amounts of dead fish, mainly sardines, on Long Rock Beach between Penzance and Marazion in Mounts Bay.
We are aware of ring netting activity for sardines in this area over the weekend and our officers& officers have been liaising with the Cornish Sardine Management Association (CSMA) which is currently working with their members to get an accurate picture of why this incident occurred.
Meanwhile we are working alongside the CSMA to examine all aspects of the sardine ring net fishery within Cornwall’s inshore waters, as reported to our recent Authority meeting on 16 December 2016. The aim of this work is to try and ensure that the fisheries targeted by the local ring netters remain sustainable and viable for the future. This will lead to a report into the fishery which will be published in 2017. This will consider whether voluntary or statutory measures are needed and how they could be developed.

 


DECEMBER 2016: UPDATE ON NEW BYELAWS


Cornwall IFCA has recently run consultations on two new byelaws,  The River and Estuarine Fishing Nets Byelaw 2017  and  The Manacles Marine Conservation Zone (Fishing Restrictions) Byelaw

The River and Estuarine Fishing Nets Byelaw 2017 has been proposed to balance the different needs of persons exploiting sea fisheries resources in the tidal parts of rivers and estuaries by prohibiting most net fishing methods.  It also provides additional protection from netting for sea fish, salmon and sea trout, including juvenile and spawning stocks.  Landing nets may still be used, ebb nets, sand-eel seines are also allowed subject to certain conditions and geographical restrictions.  The use of sand-eel seines will be subject to an annual permit scheme.

The Manacles Marine Conservation Zone (Fishing Restrictions) Byelaw has been proposed to conserve the protected features of the Manacles MCZ by prohibiting the use of bottom towed gear throughout the zone.

At the  December Authority meetin g of Cornwall IFCA, members considered the views expressed through the consultation process and agreed with the officer recommendation, that the byelaws should proceed unchanged.

The next step is that these byelaws will be sent to the Marine Management Organisation for quality assurance before being passed to the Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) who will consider the byelaws for ministerial signature. At this point these byelaws will pass into law, and will be enforced.  We will publicise via our website and Facebook page when these byelaws become law.  

At the same meeting, members of the Authority agreed to make the Whitsand and Looe Bay Marine Conservation Zone (Fishing Restrictions) Byelaw 2017. This is similar to the Manacles MCZ byelaw in that it aims to protect site features by banning bottom towed gear throughout the designated zone. Cornwall IFCA will be running a formal consultation on this byelaw in the new year (starting 12 January 2017) please check this website for more information in the new year.  
 

DEC 2016: LOBSTER, CRAWFISH AND CRAB FISHING PERMIT BYELAW 2016

In June 2016 Cornwall IFCA announced that it was applying to the Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) for confirmation of the new shellfish permit byelaw.

This byelaw has now been signed and is law. You can view a copy of this byelaw on our  Regulations/Byelaws  page.

An annually renewable permit is required for any person fishing from a boat and removing more than five animals from the species of lobster, crawfish, edible or spider crab (with no more than two from the species of lobster and crawfish) per day. Permits are only available to registered and licenced boats. Those who hold a Cornwall IFCA permit will be required to submit catch information on a monthly basis.


 

DECEMBER 2016: NEW CORNWALL IFCA BYELAWS

Cornwall IFCA has recently run consultations on two new byelaws,  The River and Estuarine Fishing Nets Byelaw 2017  and  The Manacles Marine Conservation Zone (Fishing Restrictions) Byelaw. 

The River and Estuarine Fishing Nets Byelaw 2017 has been proposed to balance the different needs of persons exploiting sea fisheries resources in the tidal parts of rivers and estuaries by prohibiting most net fishing methods.  It also provides additional protection from netting for sea fish, salmon and sea trout, including juvenile and spawning stocks.  Landing nets may still be used, ebb nets, sand-eel seines are also permitted subject to certain conditions and geographical restrictions. 

The Manacles Marine Conservation Zone (Fishing Restrictions) Byelaw has been proposed to conserve the protected features of the Manacles MCZ by prohibiting the use of bottom towed gear throughout the zone.

At the December Authority meeting of Cornwall IFCA, members considered the views expressed through the consultation process and agreed with the officer recommendation, that the byelaws should proceed unchanged.
The next step is that these byelaws will be sent to the Marine Management Organisation for quality assurance before being passed to the Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) who will consider the byelaws for ministerial signature. At this point this byelaws will pass into law, and will be enforced.  We will publicise via our website and Facebook page when these becomes law. 

At the same meeting members agreed to make the Whitsand and Looe Bay Marine Conservation Zone (Fishing Restrictions) Byelaw 2017. This is similar to the Manacles MCZ byelaw in that it aims to protect site features by banning bottom towed gear throughout the designated zone. Cornwall IFCA will be running a formal consultation on this byelaw in the new year (starting 12 January 2017) please check this website for more information in the new year.  
 

DECEMBER 2016: EUROPEAN BASS PROPOSALS

On 12 December 2016 the Agriculture and Fisheries Council reached a political agreement on a regulation concerning the 2017 catch limits for the main commercial fish stocks in the Atlantic, the North Sea and international fisheries in which EU vessels participate.

The agreement is based on the objective of achieving maximum sustainable yields (MSYs) by 2017 where possible, and by 2020 at the latest, while taking into account specific and fully justified socio-economic circumstances.

Thanks to the Council decision, the number of fish stocks managed at MSY levels will increase next year to 44 and the positive trend concerning stocks within safe biological limits will be strengthened. The agreement also tackles the question of choke species in mixed fisheries by providing elements of flexibility.

"Sustainability has been the driver of today's agreement: the sustainability of our fish stocks, but also that of our fisheries sector. We have successfully reconciled different opinions to the benefit of all parties involved, and established the basis for the achievement of maximum sustainable yield", said Gabriela Matecná, Minister for agriculture and rural development of Slovakia and president of the Council.


 

NOVEMBER 2016: SUCCESSFUL PROSECUTION OF SCALLOPING VESSEL


On 23 November 2016, at Truro Magistrates Court, Cornwall IFCA successfully prosecuted the owner and master of the scallop dredging vessel Celtic Star CS1.
 
Owner of the Celtic Star, Viviers UK Ltd based in Portsmouth, and the vessel’s master, Mr Shane Stratton (28) of 26 Maya Close, Southend-On-Sea, pleaded guilty to an offence of dredging for scallops in a prohibited area of the Eddystone reefs on 26 May 2016.  This offence is in contravention of the Closed Areas (European Marine Sites) No.2 byelaw. The magistrates handed down fines and costs totalling £17,837.
 
On 26 May 2016, Cornwall IFCA used the UK remote monitoring system to detect the presence of the Celtic Star in areas where it is prohibited to use bottom towed gear. The Celtic Star was known to use scallop dredges and officers were concerned that the speed indicated was consistent with a vessel towing fishing gear of this type. Cornwall IFCA used its patrol vessel Saint Piran to take officers to the scene to board the Celtic Star and confirm from the on-board plotter systems that the vessel had been within the prohibited area as remotely observed. The Master, Mr Stratton, was later interviewed where he admitted that he had been fishing in the area but was unaware that it was prohibited.
 
The company, Viviers UK ltd, was successfully prosecuted by Cornwall IFCA for a similar  offence on 7 September 2016 when their vessel, Morning Star (P8), was found to be dredging for scallops in the same area.
 
Cornwall IFCA Principal Enforcement Officer Simon Cadman said “We were disappointed to find another fishing vessel  owned by Viviers UK Ltd fishing in this area where its bottom towed gear has the potential to do great damage to its important flora, fauna and habitats.  Particularly so, after the company was aware that we were investigating similar offences by another of its scallop dredging vessels, the Morning Star, which was successfully prosecuted on 7th September 2016.  I hope this additional fine will lead to the company taking steps to ensure its skippers do not tow their gear into prohibited areas”.
 
Scallops are an important target species for many fishermen working within the Cornwall IFCA district and there are many local, national and EU regulations for their conservation.  The area around the Eddystone rocks is a part of a Special Area of Conservation, containing animals, plants and habitats which are considered rare, special or threatened within Europe. To protect the key seabed features, no bottom towed gear is allowed in four specified areas under the Cornwall IFCA Closed Areas (European Marine Sites) No.2 byelaw.
 
Sentence/penalties: 
Owners - Viviers UK Ltd 
Fine:                    £15,000
Victim Surcharge: £170
Costs:                  £2,000
Total:                   £17,170 – to be paid by 23.02.17
Master – Mr Shane Stratton
Fine:                    £440
Victim Surcharge: £44
Costs:                  £183.17
Total:                   £667.17 – 28 days to pay
                                       
Total - £17 837.17
 
Legislation relating to offences charged
Cornwall IFCA Closed Areas (European Marine Sites) No.2 byelaw
 

 
 

NOVEMBER 2016: PLYMOUTH SOUND AND TAMAR SURVEY

The waters of Plymouth Sound and the Tamar Estuaries are some of the best for marine recreation in the country and are used for all manner of activities, be it next to, in or on the water.

The Marine Biological Association is currently undertaking research for the Tamar Estuaries Consultative Forum (TECF)  through Plymouth City Council, into how these waters are used for recreation. The results will help inform the management of these complex waters, so that the nature conservation interests are maintained and recreational activities can continue sustainably into the future.
 
As part of the research we have been asked to circulate a survey to collect information about the sport and leisure activities visitors participate in when they visit the Plymouth Sound and Estuaries area.

It should take no more than  10 minutes  to fill in, and as a thank-you, there is the chance to win some  prizes  (include £50 of vouchers, an annual membership of the Marine Biological Association of the UK and a family ticket to the National Marine Aquarium  in Plymouth) through a draw. All data will be held by Plymouth City Council and used for TECF work only in accordance with the Data Protection Act. Data will not be passed onto third parties.


 

NOV 2016: SEA ANGLING 2017

 
Sea Angling 2017 is a project run by  Cefas  and undertaken by  Substance  seeks to get up to 1,000 sea anglers to keep an online diary of their fishing trips and catches as well as what they spend, throughout 2017.
 
The first stage  of the project is an initial survey to get information about sea anglers’ activity and to recruit anglers for the diary study. All those completing the initial survey can enter a prize draw for tackle vouchers; and those taking part in the diary study can enter a prize draw every month for tackle vouchers (this has been kindly supported by Fishing Megastore).
 
 

OCTOBER 2016: SUCCESSFUL PROSECUTION OF SCALLOPING VESSEL

On 7 September 2016, at Truro Magistrates Court, Cornwall IFCA successfully prosecuted the owner and master of the scallop dredging vessel Morning Star P8.  Viviers UK Ltd, based in Portsmouth, and the master, Mr David Thomas (29) of 9 Kiln Close, Plymouth, both pleaded guilty to nine fisheries offences.  There were six counts of fishing in a prohibited area (Start Point to Plymouth Sound and Eddystone SAC), two counts of failure to properly submit logbook and landing information and one count of undersized scallops retained on board. The magistrates handed down fines and costs totalling £10,987.
 
Cornwall IFCA used the UK remote monitoring system to detect the presence of the Morning Star in areas where it is prohibited to use bottom towed gear, under a Cornwall IFCA byelaw.  Its officers then followed this up with an inspection of the Morning Star when it made a landing of scallops into Plymouth.  There they found 7.3% of the scallops which had been retained on board the Morning Star from its last fishing trip were undersized.  When officers investigated on board records of numerous fishing trips made at the beginning of 2016, there was good evidence to show the vessel had been scallop dredging in the Eddystone reefs, as previously suspected from electronic surveillance.   Further investigations revealed that there had been a systematic failure to supply electronic logbook information and to submit electronic landings declarations, under EU law.
 
Scallops are an important target species for many fishermen working within the Cornwall IFCA district and there are many local, national and EU regulations for their conservation.  The EU minimum size exists to allow scallops to grow to maturity and breed, providing a good chance of continuing success for scallop fisheries.  The area around the Eddystone rocks is a part of a Special Area of Conservation, containing animals, plants and habitats which are considered rare, special or threatened within Europe. To protect the key seabed features, no dredging for scallops is allowed in four specified areas.
 
Cornwall IFCA Principal Enforcement Officer Simon Cadman said “Dredging for scallops is currently the top enforcement priority for this authority.  This form of fishing poses a high risk to designated features in certain Special Areas of Conservation and consequently, it is one of the reasons why it is given significant attention.  This prosecution underlines our commitment to the conservation of the marine environment.  I am content that the court has reflected the seriousness of the offences by imposing substantial fines and costs.”
 

SEPT 2016: RIVER AND ESTUARY NETTING BYELAW

Marine and Coastal Access Act 2009

THIS CONSULTATION HAS NOW CLOSED. 
 
River and Estuarine Fishing Nets Byelaw  2017

  Notice is hereby given:  Cornwall Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority (IFCA) intends to apply to the Minister for the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs for the confirmation of the River and Estuarine Fishing Nets Byelaw 2017.
 
Byelaw:  The River and Estuarine Fishing Nets Byelaw 2017 has been proposed to balance the different needs of persons exploiting sea fisheries resources in the tidal parts of rivers and estuaries by prohibiting most net fishing methods.  It also provides additional protection from netting for sea fish, salmon and sea trout, including juvenile and spawning stocks.  Landing nets may still be used, ebb nets, sand-eel seines are also permitted subject to certain conditions and geographical restrictions.Please refer to the illustrative charts below for guidance on the areas. 

 
A full text of the above Byelaw can be inspected at, or obtained from Cornwall IFCA, Chi Gallos, Hayle Marine Renewables Business Park, North Quay, Hayle, TR27 4DD.  Copies can be requested in person, by letter or by phone. 

Any person wishing to object or comment must make representations, within 28 days of the publication of this notice (Thursday 29 September 2016), in writing to both the Marine Management Organisation (MMO) and Cornwall IFCA at the following addresses:
 
MMO : Marine Conservation and Enforcement Team, Marine Management Organisation, Lancaster House, Hampshire Court, Newcastle Upon Tyne, NE4 7YH
or,  ifcabyelaws@marinemanagement.org.uk
  
Cornwall IFCA:  Chi Gallos, Hayle Marine Renewables Business Park, North Quay, Hayle, TR27 4DD
or,  enquiries@cornwall-ifca.gov.uk



 
 

SEPT 2016: MANACLES MCZ BYELAW

Marine and Coastal Access Act 2009
 
THIS CONSULTATION HAS NOW CLOSED. 
Manacles Marine Conservation Zone (Fishing Restrictions) Byelaw 2017
 
Notice is hereby given:  Cornwall Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority (IFCA) intends to apply to the Minister for the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs for the confirmation of the Manacles Marine Conservation Zone (Fishing Restrictions) Byelaw.
 
Byelaw:  The Manacles Marine Conservation Zone (Fishing Restrictions) Byelaw has been proposed to conserve the protected features of the Manacles MCZ by prohibiting the use of bottom towed gear throughout the zone.
 
A full text of the above Byelaw can be inspected at, or obtained from Cornwall IFCA, Chi Gallos, Hayle Marine Renewables Business Park, North Quay, Hayle, TR27 4DD.  Copies can be requested in person, by letter or by phone. 

Any person wishing to object or comment must make representations, within 28 days of the publication of this notice (Thursday 29 September 2016), in writing to both the Marine Management Organisation (MMO) and Cornwall IFCA at the following addresses:
 
MMO : Marine Conservation and Enforcement Team, Marine Management Organisation, Lancaster House, Hampshire Court, Newcastle Upon Tyne, NE4 7YH
or,  ifcabyelaws@marinemanagement.org.uk
  
Cornwall IFCA:  Chi Gallos, Hayle Marine Renewables Business Park, North Quay, Hayle, TR27 4DD
or,  enquiries@cornwall-ifca.gov.uk

 
 
 

SEPT 2016: RECREATIONAL ANGLING PUBLIC MEETING

Recreational Sea Angling public meeting
 
Tuesday 18 October 2016

Kingsley Village 19:00-21:00

 
The purpose of this meeting is to identify;
  • The top priority issues which recreational sea anglers would like to see addressed;
  • The key measures Cornwall IFCA could put in place that would improve these issues; and
  • How recreational sea anglers can support these changes?
This builds on a series of public meetings and engagement activities that Cornwall IFCA has been undertaking over the last few years.
 
The meeting will also give an opportunity for us to provide you with an update on recent changes in legislation and to answer any questions you may have. The results of this meeting will be written into a report and will form the basis of a web survey to reach out wider to more recreational sea anglers. We will then create an action plan, based on our findings, which can be brought back to Cornwall IFCA’s Committee for discussion.
 
 
You do not need to book to attend the meeting, but if you would like any more information please reply to this e-mail or call us on 01736 336842.

 

 
 

JUNE 2016: DRAFT PERMIT BYEALW

Those of you who had shellfish permits in 2015, are likely to know that Cornwall IFCA was working on a new byelaw to replace the current byelaw under which you are permitted to fish for various crustacean species. 

The Lobster, Crawfish and Crab Fishing Permit Byelaw 2016  was made by Cornwall IFCA in March 2016. 

The new byelaw is now going through final legal processes before it can be confirmed by Defra, which will hopefully be later this year. 

Assuming the new byelaw is confirmed in 2016, as a current holder of a 2016 permit, you will not be required to apply for a replacement permit under the new byelaw for the remaining part of this year.

 

 
 

JUNE 2016: RECREATIONAL SEA ANGLING STRATEGY

Cornwall IFCA has published its Recreational Sea Angling Strategy. 

Recreational sea angling is a traditional, valuable and important part of inshore fisheries in Cornwall.  

Recreational sea angling is a high-value leisure activity in Europe, with more than 8 million anglers spending over €8 billion on the pursuit each year. During 2012, in England, this expenditure amounted to £1.23 billion on sea fishing, and this was estimated to support over 10,000 full-time equivalent jobs. Recreational sea angling also provides significant social benefits, like accessible relaxation and exercise . 

Cornwall IFCA’s recreational sea angling strategy describes how we will include the views and aspirations of the recreational sea angling sector within the management of its fisheries in a transparent and fair manner. 

The next step will be to create an accompanying action plan detailing what Cornwall IFCA will do to engage with, and support recreational sea anglers. This will be created in consultation with recreational sea anglers through a web survey and a public meeting. Details will be put before Cornwall IFCA’s September Committee meeting, with the public consultation happening soon afterwards. 

Many individual anglers and clubs contributed their time towards developing the recreational sea angling strategy and we look forward to working with you again in producing the action plan.

  

APRIL 2016: MMO TO HOST MARINE PLANNING MEETINGS

Marine planning begins in the South West
 
The Marine Management Organisation is starting the  next phase of marine plans,  and would like to invite you to one of the marine planning events, taking place the week of Monday 11 April.
 
The events are an opportunity to meet your local marine planner and to find out more about what marine planning involves, and how you can get involved. We will also be demonstrating our  Marine Information System  and the  evidence base  where you can view some of the evidence we have already gathered for your area. 
 
The events are open sessions, including a number of scheduled presentations on marine planning. These will be held hourly, beginning at the start times shown below.
 
Area: Falmouth
Date: Monday 11 April 2016
Time: 12 to 3pm - please note these are open sessions
Location: National Maritime Museum, Discovery Quay, Falmouth TR11 3QY
 
Area: Plymouth
Date: Tuesday 12 April 2016
Time: 1 to 4pm - please note these are open sessions
Location: Warspite Room, Plymouth City Council Guildhall PL1 2AA
(hosted by Tamar Estuary Consultative Forum)
 
Area: Bideford
Date: Wednesday 13 April 2016
Time: 1 to 4pm - please note these are open sessions
Location: Caddsdown Business Support Centre, Caddsdown Industrial Estate, Farm Road EX39 3DX
 
Area: Weston-Super-Mare
Date: Thursday 14 April 2016
Time: 9am to 12pm - please note these are open sessions
Location: Weston College, Knightstone Campus, Knightstone Road BS23 2AL
 

 

MARCH 2016: NEW SHELLFISH PERMIT BYELAW CONSULTATION

Marine and Coastal Access Act 2009
 
The Lobster, Crawfish and Crab Fishing Permit Byelaw
  
Notice is hereby given:  Cornwall Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority (Cornwall IFCA) intends to apply to the Minister for the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs for the confirmation of the Lobster, Crawfish and Crab Fishing Permit Byelaw.
 
Byelaw:  The Lobster, Crawfish and Crab Fishing Permit Byelaw has been proposed as a direct replacement for the existing Lobster, Crawfish and Crab Fishing for Profit Byelaw which has existed (in various formats) since the 1980s. The new byelaw is broadly similar to the existing legislation but includes the whole of the Cornwall IFCA district.  It will also require those fishing under the permit to supply monthly returns on a wider variety of species than previously, and increases the number of shellfish allowed for boats without a permit from two to five (with no more than two animals from the species of lobster and crawfish combined).
 
A full text of the above Byelaw can be inspected at, or obtained from Cornwall IFCA, St Clare Offices, St Clare Street, Penzance, Cornwall, TR18 3QW.  Copies can be requested in person, by letter or by phone.
 
Any person wishing to object or comment must make representations, within 28 days of the first publication of this notice (Thursday 31 March 2016), in writing to  both  the Marine Management Organisation (MMO) and Cornwall IFCA at the following addresses:
 
MMO : Marine Conservation and Enforcement Team, Marine Management Organisation, Lancaster House, Hampshire Court, Newcastle Upon Tyne, NE4 7YH
Or,  ifcabyelaws@marinemanagement.org.uk
  
Cornwall IFCA:  Chief Officer, Cornwall IFCA, St Clare Offices, St Clare Street, Penzance, Cornwall  TR18 3QW.
Or,  enquiries@cornwall-ifca.gov.uk
 

FEB 2016: HARBOUR PORPOISE POSSIBLE SPECIAL AREA OF CONSERVATION CONSULTATION - PUBLIC STAKEHOLDER EVENTS


As part of the ongoing public consultation regarding the proposals for harbour porpoise possible Special Areas of Conservation (pSACs), JNCC is hosting  open public drop-in events  to provide opportunity for anyone with an interest to come and chat about the proposed sites in an informal environment.  We will be on hand to offer information, help with understanding the process and discuss any issues or concerns there may be. 
There are six scheduled events two of which will be in Cornwall:
Thursday 17 th  March,       16-20:00
Hayle Rugby Club
Hayle, Cornwall
 
Monday 21 st  March,           16-20:00
National Lobster Hatchery
Padstow, Cornwall
Please  click here  for more information on the proposals. 
Date Time Address
Tuesday 1 st  March,
Emmanuel Church
Yorkshire – Bridlington, Yorkshire
 16:00 – 20:0070 Cardigan Road,
Bridlington, YO15 3JT
Wednesday 2 nd  March,
Ramsgate Small Boat Owners Association  
Ramsgate, Kent
 15:30 - 19:0020 Guildford Lawn,
Ramsgate, Kent CT11 9AY.
Thursday 3 rd  March,
Royal Norfolk & Suffolk Yacht Club
Suffolk – Lowestoft
 16:00 - 20:00Royal Plain,
Lowestoft, Suffolk, NR33 0AQ
Thursday 17 th  March,
Hayle Rugby Club
Hayle, Cornwall
 16:00 - 20:00Memorial Park,
Marsh Lane, Hayle, Cornwall, TR27 5HX
Monday 21 st  March,
National Lobster Hatchery
Padstow, Cornwall
 16:00 - 20:00South Quay,
Padstow, Cornwall, PL28 8BL
uesday 22 nd  March,
Burton Art Gallery & Museum
Bideford, Devon
 16:00 - 20:00Kingsley Road,
Bideford, Devon, EX39 2QQ
At these events, members of staff from JNCC will attend supported by Natural England, the Inshore Fisheries Conservation Authorities and the Marine Management Organisation. We will have various supporting materials to hand to help answer any questions, but you can also find all supporting consultation material on our  webpages .  
If you have any questions regarding these events, please contact the JNCC Marine Species Advice Team at   porpoise@jncc.gov.uk  or call 01733 562626.





JAN 2016: UPDATE ON PROPOSED NETTING BYELAWS

New byelaws proposed for nets
Cornwall IFCA officers and members have for some years been working on new byelaws to regulate the use of nets in its district.  There is a clear need to make new byelaws, with Cornwall IFCA having inherited a large number of byelaws for the rivers and estuaries which were originally made by the EA and its predecessors and Devon Sea Fisheries Committee, as far back as 1896.  The aim is to rationalise the regulation of nets, making the byelaws appropriate to management of the exploitation of sea fisheries resources needs of today.
 
At this time, further byelaw making progress is being purposely delayed, because it is understood that Defra may soon propose making a new order to manage fishing for bass in inshore areas.  As this could include new measures for nets, it is necessary to ensure that any new Cornwall IFCA byelaw is not repeating national  legislation, and that it will work complementary  to it.
 
Two byelaws are currently being developed; one for the open sea and another for Cornwall’s rivers and estuaries (up to the tidal limits). The two draft byelaws were presented to the Cornwall IFCA committee in December 2-14, but it is clear that some amendments well be needed before the Committee considers them again in detail. This is not likely to happen before June 2016. 
 
Open sea fishing nets byelaw   
The current draft of this byelaw, basically takes forward the requirement to restrict the use of fixed nets in numerous coastal areas, in order that salmon and sea trout are relatively unimpeded in the upper part of the water column as they migrate to and from rivers.  The major proposed change to historic byelaws is the plan to increase the fixed net headline depth from 3m to 5m below the sea surface, to afford greater protection for salmon and sea trout.  This came about because of Environment Agency (EA) concerns for the vulnerability of these fish species to accidental capture in fixed nets.   The areas affected by the headline depth restriction are the same as under the current Fixed Engines byelaw, with the addition of a further three locations where salmon and/or sea trout are believed to aggregate.  In all there would be 11 affected areas, as per the map shown below.
 
River and estuarine fishing nets byelaw   
A large number of byelaws have been brought together into one byelaw so that most of the proposed restrictions for nets are broadly the same in all rivers and estuaries.  However, there are spatial and temporal differences to cater for salmon and sea trout concerns, as evidenced by the EA.  The proposed byelaw prohibits the use of all nets in rivers and estuaries, and other than for the Tamar and Lynher rivers, will only make exemptions for seine nets <20mm mesh size used for sandeels, ebb nets (compass nets). Small hand operated nets such as landing nets will be allowed in all rivers.  The much greater restrictions on nets are as a result of concerns for certain species of sea fish which aggregate in rivers and estuaries, as well as for salmon and sea trout. 
 
Cornwall IFCA welcomes any comments on its two draft netting byelaws, with letters or emails to the Chief Officer and/or Chairman of the Cornwall IFCA committee being the preferred approach.
 
 
 

JAN 2016: NEW RESTRICTIONS ON BASS FISHING CONFIRMED

The European Union has now published the annual Total Allowable Catch and Quota (T&Q) regulations for 2016. This in effect confirms the new regulations concerning fishing for bass. The new regulations will come into effect at 00:01 on 29 Jan 2016.
The following are the new regulations that will effect fishing for Bass in Cornwall IFCA’s District.
(please note there may be other restrictions outside of our district)

For Commercial fisheries
From 1 January to 30 June 2016:
 A prohibition on commercial vessels fishing for bass except for;
·         Demersal trawls and seines which are permitted a 1% bass by-catch; and
·         Hooks and lines and fixed gill nets which are permitted 1,300kg per vessel in January, April, May and June (NB: this does not include drift net fisheries). The fishery is closed in February and March.
 
From 1 July to 31 December 2016:
Monthly catch limits apply to all vessels;
·         1,300kg per vessel per month for hooks and lines and fixed gill nets (NB: this does not include drift net fisheries)
·         1,000kg per vessel per month for all other gears
 
For Recreational fisheries
From 1 January to 30 June 2016
Catch and release only permitted 
 
From 1 July to 31 December 2016 
One bass per fisherman per day
 
Click here  to see more information provided by the Marine Management Organisation.
 
If you think you may be affected by these new regulations and would like to clarify anything please  contact us  to speak to one of our fishery officers. 
 

JAN 2016: CONSULTATION OPEN ON PROPOSED NEW SAC

Special Areas of Conservation (SAC) are areas of land or sea identified as being of European importance for the conservation of biodiversity. Under the EU Habitats and Species Directive 1992 all EU member states are required to designate SACs and put in place measures to ensure the conservation of the habitats and species for which the sites are designated.
The JNCC has announced the opening of consultation on the possible designation of a SAC for Harbour Porpoises. 

JNCC is the public body that advises the UK Government and devolved administrations on UK-wide and international nature conservation.
 

JAN 16 NEW MCZ ANNOUNCED

On the 17 Jan 2016 the Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs, Defra, announced twenty-three new areas along the UK coast which are to be designated as the latest Marine Conservation Zones (MCZs).

The new MCZs will cover areas across the country from as far north as Farnes East off the coast of Northumberland down to Land’s End in the South West, and will protect 45 different types of habitat, geological features and fascinating species - including stalked jellyfish and spiny lobsters.

 
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