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Thread: West Coast Fishing Concern

  1. #1
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    Default West Coast Fishing Concern

    http://www.fishupdate.com/news/fulls...g_Concern.html



    Measures considered to manage Scottish west coast prawn fishery.

    The Scottish Government is considering urgent action to address exceptionally high levels of prawn fishing activities in the West of Scotland.

    Recent months have seen a shift of vessels that normally fish for prawns in the North Sea, where prawns have been scarce this year, moving to the West causing much greater fishing activity than expected.

    While quota is projected to last the year and overall prawn fishing is at a similar level to 2011 and 2010, the displacement means the annual ‘time at sea’ constraints for the West Coast – the set limits for each geographic area under the EU’s Cod Recovery Plan – will be breached without action being taken. This would result in the early closure of the fishery.

    Fisheries Secretary Richard Lochhead said: "We want to do all we can to ensure that fishermen can catch their quotas, however, the unprecedented prawn fishing pressures in the West has put that at risk. Therefore I've instructed my officials to urgently explore measures to remedy the situation.

    “Biological factors mean that prawns have been late appearing in the North Sea – but EU measures as part of the Cod Recovery Plan are too inflexible to make allowances for this unexpected development.

    "Clearly we want to see West Coast fishermen able to fish their local waters, therefore, we are proposing to temporarily restrict access for North Sea vessels so that a full year's fishery in the west can be maintained. This will mean the fleet has the time to catch its full quota.

    "I have received a full report about the situation from Marine Scotland who are urgently consulting with industry so that we have temporary controls in place as soon as possible. I recognise the deep concerns of the industry about this issue and we will continue to carefully monitor developments."

  2. #2
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    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotlan...lands-19011514

    Deal reached on fishing for west coast prawns

    The Scottish government and fishermen have agreed a course of action designed to relieve pressure on prawn fishing off the west coast.

    West coast fishermen have complained that trawlers from Scotland's east coast threaten this year's fishing.

    They fear the EU limit on the time vessels are permitted to fish will be reached earlier than normal and the fishery will be closed.

    Most east crews will be barred from the west until the end of the year.

    The temporary measure applies to east coast registered vessels that did not fish for more than 60 days on the west coast last year.

    The deal has been accepted by fishermen and processors on the Western Isles.


    While the quota for the west has been projected to last the year, there were concerns that the increased activity would see the annual "time at sea" constraints breached.

    This would result in the early closure of the fishery, the government said.

    Limits on the time vessels are permitted to fish are set for each geographic area under the EU's Cod Recovery Plan.

    Fisheries Secretary Richard Lochhead said prawns have been scarce in the North Sea.

    Biological factors had led to the shellfish appearing later than normal, and vessels that normally fished in the North Sea had shifted to the west coast.

    Mr Lochhead said the government wanted to make sure fishermen caught their quotas.

    He said: "I recognise the deep concerns of the industry over this issue, therefore its important government takes action to ensure west coast fishermen have their time at sea to catch their full prawn quotas this year.

    "With the temporary measures we now have in place, I'm confident the usual fishing season can continue."

    Mr Lochhead added: "I want to emphasis that this issue has been caused by two factors.

    "Firstly, the unusual scarcity of prawns in the North Sea that has lead to effort change and, secondly, this is not about quota availability but rather having the necessary days at sea to catch quota."

  3. #3
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    http://www.fishupdate.com/news/fulls...T_FISHING.html

    WAY AHEAD ANNOUNCED FOR WEST COAST FISHING



    Temporary controls to ensure a full year prawn fishery on Scottish west coast.

    Marine Scotland has implemented new measures, following consultation with industry, to ensure West Coast fishermen can catch their full prawn quota this year.

    Recent months have seen an unprecedented shift of vessels that normally fish for prawns in the North Sea, where prawns have been scarce this year, to the West. While there is sufficient quota and overall prawn fishing is at a similar level to 2011 and 2010, the displacement means the annual ‘time at sea’ constraints will be breached without action being taken.

    This latest management challenge starkly illustrates the need for an overhaul of the cod recovery plan – something that the Government and industry have been calling for some time.

    The temporary measures announced are that:
    • The remaining 2012 effort (fishing time) for the West Coast has been allocated to West Coast vessels only, which will also include boats with a record of more than 60 days fishing in the west during 2011.
    • A basic allocation of 16 days fishing time for West Coast vessels, which will allow over 90 per cent of vessels to carry on their normal time at sea.
    • Marine Scotland and industry will consider the need for a managed closure of the West Coast fishery over the festive period and into early January, when minimal fishing activities take place.

    Fisheries Secretary Richard Lochhead said: “I recognise the deep concerns of the industry over this issue, therefore its important Government takes action to ensure West Coast fishermen have their time at sea to catch their full prawn quotas this year. With the temporary measures we now have in place, I’m confident the usual fishing season can continue.

    "I want to emphasis that this issue has been caused by two factors – firstly, the unusual scarcity of prawns in the North Sea that has lead to effort change; and secondly, this is not about quota availability but rather having the necessary days at sea to catch quota. This illustrates the management difficulties related to the EU’s flawed Cod Recovery Plan.

    "My overall objective is to ensure West Coast fisherman can catch their quotas and are able to supply local processing businesses.

    “I have been kept closely informed by Marine Scotland officials and have instructed them to undertake further close monitoring of the position as it develops and will keep the situation under review.”

  4. #4
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    http://www.fishupdate.com/news/fulls...est_coast.html

    SFF responds to moves to curb prawn fishing on West coast



    Responding to the news that the Scottish Government is implementing urgent action to address high levels of prawn fishing in the West of Scotland, Alan Coghill, president of the Scottish Fishermen’s Federation said: “This is a problem directly related to the discredited Cod Plan which is meant to restrict the catching of cod but is being applied to a sector which has taken strenuous efforts this year to reduce discards of cod and other fish.

    "Extensive gear trials have been undertaken involving industry and government which have succeeded in producing gears which have vastly reduced unwanted catches by the Scottish fleet.

    “An acknowledgement of this positive achievement would be a transfer of effort from the North Sea where stocks appear to have declined from previous levels, to West of Scotland where stocks have improved after some disappointing years. The fleet has quota to catch and businesses to sustain resulting in the change of emphasis from East to West.

    “The issue has also been aggravated by IT delays in the collation of information on the amount of current fishing effort for prawns on the west coast, which has initiated this sudden and unwelcome response. If the information had come to light earlier, than a more gradual approach of controls could have been adopted.

    “The prawn sector is an incredibly important part of the Scottish fishing industry, which needs full backing at all levels. Policies and measures need to be in place to ensure that fishery can be worked in a proper fashion that enables businesses to plan ahead and fish profitably and sustainably. This patently has not happened in this instance.

    “This situation underlines the need for both the UK and the Scottish government to vigorously restate the case for reviewing and amending the Cod Plan before the end of 2012. The present situation is a prime example of a regulatory process which does not work and is likely to cause major economic and social problems across the industry from net to plate.”

  5. #5
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    http://www.fishnewseu.com/index.php?...tish&Itemid=54

    Cod plans blamed for prawn palaver

    Monday, 30 July 2012 08:18

    ALAN Coghill, president of the Scottish Fishermen’s Federation (SFF), has blamed UK Cod Plans for the decision to stop Britain’s North Sea fleet from catching langoustines off Scotland’s west coast.

    “This is a problem directly related to the discredited Cod Plan which is meant to restrict the catching of cod but is being applied to a sector which has taken strenuous efforts this year to reduce discards of cod and other fish. Extensive gear trials have been undertaken involving industry and government which have succeeded in producing gears which have vastly reduced unwanted catches by the Scottish fleet,” he claimed.

    “An acknowledgement of this positive achievement would be a transfer of effort from the North Sea where stocks appear to have declined from previous levels, to West of Scotland where stocks have improved after some disappointing years. The fleet has quota to catch and businesses to sustain resulting in the change of emphasis from East to West.

    “The issue has also been aggravated by IT delays in the collation of information on the amount of current fishing effort for prawns on the west coast, which has initiated this sudden and unwelcome response. If the information had come to light earlier, than a more gradual approach of controls could have been adopted.

    “The prawn sector is an incredibly important part of the Scottish fishing industry, which needs full backing at all levels. Policies and measures need to be in place to ensure that fishery can be worked in a proper fashion that enables businesses to plan ahead and fish profitably and sustainably. This patently has not happened in this instance.

    “This situation underlines the need for both the UK and the Scottish government to vigorously restate the case for reviewing and amending the Cod Plan before the end of 2012. The present situation is a prime example of a regulatory process which does not work and is likely to cause major economic and social problems across the industry from net to plate.”

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