Think the whole thing through before introduction.

This whole thing needs a lot of thought with respect to how it may impact al sectors of the fishing community. Rushing it through could have serious consequences.

The management of a kill licence system is going to cause real difficulties for large angling clubs with access to multiple waters. I can see how a ghillied beat could manage it with a full time man controlling the issue of tags on his beat but a club with say 500 members across multiple rivers and lochs is going to have to find a very clever way of issuing and controlling the distribution of licences to anglers wishing to take them up.

The issue of permits and requested tags will have to be delayed every year until the regulatory body tells the club how many tags it can issue often delaying cash flow.

Will the fishery have a right of appeal if it disagrees with the decision?

No one has indicated just what parameters will be used to determine whether a "harvestable surplus " exists or not:

  • Is it juvenile numbers - if so do we ignore the problems at sea which can decimate aparently healthy populations?
  • Is it prevoius years catch returns - which can be pretty unreliable?
  • Is it returning adult numbers - could be closing the barn door after the horse has bolted - and not many rivers have fish counters?
  • Do we look at trends over a number of years and extrapolate - could be too general an approach - a single natural phenomenon could throw up a particularly bad or good unexpected year?
  • Do we continue to ignore the effect of predators both at sea and in-river and look at the effect of anglers in isolation from all of the other threats facing our salmon?


Why the contribution is important

It is vital when introducing legislation to understand it's implications and how it will be managed and enforced at all levels.

If this is really an attempt to protect salmon then surely all potential threats MUST be considered and ranked in terms of their impact on salmon stocks.

by Balmahablogger on July 24, 2015 at 01:22PM

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Average score : 4.8
Based on : 5 votes


  • Posted by Balmahablogger July 24, 2015 at 14:27

    Sorry I hadn't read LockhartL's post "The application- who makes it and how is it assessed?" when I wrote this but I still think this is going to be a nightmare to manage successfully for large angling clubs without it threatening their financial security.
    The decision on numbers of licences allowed is going to be central to the system - our club issues memberships allowing anglers access to multiple waters - will each "part" of a fishery have different numbers of licences or will it be an overall number with the club left to manage where they can be used?
  • Posted by Ian July 24, 2015 at 14:48

    If, as I do now, I fish catch & release, then I do not need a kill licence.
    I suspect this will apply to a lot of anglers !
  • Posted by Ayrshirecast July 25, 2015 at 14:42

    The lack of detail over the cost of a licence and tag is greatly concerning too. Surely by now, someone within government has managed to calculate a cost? Why hasn't this been published? It's too much to expect anglers to support new legislation without knowing the full implications.
    With local clubs already seeing a decline in their membership and struggling to recruit new anglers, cost of membership is already rising just to balance the books. Extra charges are off putting to many and the Clubs are genuinely under threat from this proposal as many anglers see it as their right to take 'one for the pot' despite sustained efforts by the Boards and local Trust to encourage C&R. I realise that taking one for the pot doesn't help conservation, but in some areas where Clubs are active, the alternative should they fail, will be open season for poachers and there's inadequate funds on the west coast to employ any bailiffs! (several volunteers and one part time co ordinator, but not one paid bailiff in Ayrshire). Poaching is already rife in Ayrshire and will only get worse. Without adequate means of enforcing new legislation, I expect this tagging system will be unworkable in the proposed format.
    This needs properly thought through and not rushed to appease Europe. (Incidentally I personally support and practice 100% voluntary catch and release of wild salmon and have done for years as have many others yet stocks still decline).
  • Posted by bradan July 26, 2015 at 08:27

    The point about unforeseen consequences is well made.

    My local club does a lot of unpaid bank work to improve access, maintain flows, remove obstructions from spawning burns, deal with invasives such as Japanese Knotweed etc. The current proposals will result in a decline in members and therefore our ability to maintain the upkeep our beats which in turn will make them less suitable for spawning salmonoids. Less habitat, less spawing ground, less parr, less returning fish. The law of unintended consequences.
  • Posted by boabs55 July 26, 2015 at 21:40

    Ayrshirecast you claim that poaching is now rife on Ayrshire rivers can i ask you where you get this from? Do you have real proof of this? If so i do hope you keep reporting all incidents you see or hear about. The whole tagging /kill license thing appears to me to be the only thing SG is interested in at the moment because they think they can see a golden egg moneypot which they wish to aquire. The tagging/kill license will be unworkable if it is set out the way most people on here think . As we have not been told for sure i am pretty certain they are hiding the big bombshell COST to fisheries and anglers. Why after all this time spent with the review and all those suggestions and proposals is this the only thing we are being told about so far. The whole thing stinks .
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