Tagging, bureaucracy, and disillusion.

I run a small fishing business and the extra costs involved in applying for each fishery to have tags will be a disincentive to apply. I own a few beats, most of which are lightly fished, which of course is a good conservation measure in itself. Salmon fishing business’s such as mine are already under financial pressure and if government think it will have no financial implications for small business/ beats then they have simply not understood these pressures.

 

Lets take for example an angling club. How are they going to allocate tags between all their members (maybe 120-160 members for an average size club) and then try and allocate tags for visiting anglers as well.  It beggars belief that Government want to introduce such a complex system (which they probably don’t fully understand) to an industry (that they don’t fully understand) that in recent years has been highly successful at conservation- often returning 80% of their catch. 

 

The system will break down, it will be a logistical nightmare for clubs/ Beats and business and will of course be a huge financial burden - Both paying for the tags and applying for the licence. Tags will be lost and not handed back when not used (my guests regularly loose their car keys phone and fishing tackle) .It will end with clubs and fisheries getting disillusioned and simply abandoning applying for licenses in future. All well and good – perhaps this is what government wants ??

 

Lets be clear though if this happens Scotland WILL loose rods and trade to other countries, where anglers can take the odd Salmon using their own good judgment.  If government do not understand this then they have not spoken and engaged enough fisher men and owners really should have. All the measures that are being proposed will turn even more people away from Scottish Salmon fishing.

 

On the final note - If a kill license is determined on the last 5 years killed fish on a fishery then all the fisheries that kill the most will be rewarded the most kill tags.

 

 This hardly seems fair to the fisheries that have been responsible.  Lets say a fishery has 40 tags a year, as this has been their average kill rate. Lets envisage a scenario when fishery has a very dry year and then a tremendous run of fish in late October. Of course all these October fish will have to go back (and should)- but the fisheries average as calculated every 5 years will go down. 

 

I know of many fisheries (perhaps Tree lined) or under fished, for whatever reason and they won’t get any tags as they don’t have a historic rate of killed fish.  The worth and health of a fishery should not be determined by this distorted rationale.  What is the big rush anyway for carcass tags, and why the sudden interest in our fisheries from government?  I find it slightly galling that our huge effort from thousands of volunteers in the sector has been deemed as NOT fit for purpose.

 

Quite simply this should have been a Fishery reviewNOT a fishery management review. If it had been a fishery review then every aspect of fishery management would have been looked at, including the various bottlenecks Salmon encounter, from problems in the high seas to fish Farming and Forestry.  This would have required government to ask some awkward questions about its own policies though.  Something that I am sure that it wasn’t keen to do.

A simple solution – Scrap the idea of carcass tagging. All Salmon to be returned to 1st June.  All Salmon over 10 lb to be returned.  All hen fish in October to be returned.

Visiting anglers to only take one salmon per river on a weeks visit. ( I am not sure how many fish a local should be allowed to take). I would imagine these measures (enforced locally by beat owners/ clubs) will allow many millions more Salmon eggs per year to be deposited. I am sure someone could do a rough calculation

Why the contribution is important

Quite simply this should have been a Fishery review – NOT a fishery management review. If it had been a fishery review then every aspect of fishery management would have been looked at, including the various bottlenecks Salmon encounter, from problems in the high seas to fish Farming and Forestry.  This would have required government to ask some awkward questions about its own policies though.  Something that I am sure that it wasn’t keen to do.

by garavogue on July 25, 2015 at 07:40PM

Current Rating

4.91666666667
Average score : 4.9
Based on : 12 votes

Comments

  • Posted by Riverman July 25, 2015 at 20:10

    well thought out response
  • Posted by garavogue July 26, 2015 at 16:56

    Guests this week have asked questions about the fishery review and there comments have been that this will shut your business down and they have been coming for the last 20 years!
  • Posted by Greenheart July 26, 2015 at 21:52

    Another submission that highlights the folly of the kill licensing system.
  • Posted by RogerDowald July 27, 2015 at 07:38

    Part of the difficulty seems to lie in setting a rational quota based on the assessed need for conservation measures at a river system level and then translating this to the actions of individual anglers, who let's not forget may fish many blank days on different river systems through a season.
  • Posted by westwind51 July 27, 2015 at 21:53

    I agree with the OP. I believe that Angling clubs and associations will be hit hardest by this plan.My angling association has approx' 400 members and I cannot fathom a mechanism to the fair distribution of tags between all members of the association. Are the Scottish Government really prepared to "sacrifice" ordinary members of the public (angling club members) rights to keep a fish from a sustainable system while others who are fortunate to have enough money to fish exclusive beats are able to afford tags allowing them to keep all the fish they catch?
Log in or register to add comments and rate ideas