We're seeking comments on the draft static gear proposal. Please give us your views and comment on other submissions. Alongside this exercise there are working groups across Scotland discussing options.

Draft Proposal for Discussion
1. For fishing gear deployed at depths of 15 metres and greater, at mean low water springs, within 12 nautical miles from Baselines, by either licensed or unlicensed fishing vessels, both ends of each fleet must be marked with at least 1 brightly coloured inflatable buoy and 1 float: the brightly coloured inflatable buoys must have a minimum diameter of 39 cm (A2 size). The floats a minimum diameter of 13.5cm.

2. For fishing gear deployed at depths of less than 15 metres, at mean low water springs, within 12 nautical miles from Baselines, by either licensed or unlicensed fishing vessels, both ends of each fleet must be marked with at least 1 brightly coloured inflatable buoy and 1 float: the brightly coloured inflatable buoys must have a minimum diameter of 21 cm (A0 size). The floats a minimum diameter of 13.5cm.

3. Both risers must be either leaded or use securely weighted rope, so that the rope is not floating on the surface. Riser ropes must be sufficient to cope with the tide.

4. The connecting rope between each buoy and float, at either end of the fleet, must be floating rope and must be no more than 2 fathoms in length.

5. At least one of the two floats must have an electronic identification (EID) chip, which will identify the fishing vessel to which the gear belongs. 

Enforcement Proposal
6. Marine Scotland Compliance (MSC) would use EID stick readers during inshore RIB patrols to conduct periodic risk assessments.   

7. Where appropriate and necessary, MSC could subsequently enforce by chartering a suitable vessel and crew, which MSC Fishery Officers would join, so that any incorrectly marked static gear identified during the RIB patrols, or identified at the time, could be lifted and seized.

8. Any catch would be discarded.

9. Seized gear would be steam cleaned and stored, which would be for a maximum of three (3) months. If the static gear was not claimed within a three (3) month period, MSC would dispose of the gear, including by selling it.   

Noted Issues
10. This proposal does not make it mandatory to indicate the direction that the static gear has been shot.

11. It also does not make lights or devices to allow floats to be detected by radar during dark hours mandatory. 

More information: recommendations on a new policy for gear conflict

We welcome comments, ideas and queries to aid the creation of requirements which are realistic, beneficial and proportionate.

Any comments from the Scottish Government will be posted using the username 'simondryden'. Please contact simon.dryden@gov.scot with any enquiries. This challenge will close on 3 June 2016.

Image source: Source:© Copyright Mike Pennington and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

 

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