Response 175753359

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2. The Salmon Five Point Approach

Q2.2a. To what extent do you agree with the summary of the current state of salmon stocks and the supporting information provided in Appendix 2?

Please select one item
Wholly
Ticked Partially
Not at all
Please give your reasons and any evidence you have to support your answer.
Any suggestion that sea Trout are not at risk is flawed. It is known that huge numbers of sea-trout are landed at north east ports and that monitoring or enforcement of regulations is poor due to the minimal resource provided to the team.

3. Deciding which salmon stocks need further protection

Q3.2a. To what extent do you agree that a salmon stock should be subject to additional protection from net/fixed engine and rod exploitation if it is classified as either At Risk or Probably at Risk of failing to meet its Management Objective?

Please select one item
Wholly
Ticked Partially
Not at all
Please give your reasons and any evidence you have to support your answer. If you would like to provide us with an alternative approach then please do so.
To group rod and net fishing together is wrong, The damage done by rod anglers to stocks is minimal compare to nets, yet the result of a survey worded in this manner will necessitate treating both alike. Rod fishing needs to be separated from net fishing. The sceptic would say that this is a deliberate strategy.

4. Review of existing National Salmon Byelaws

Q4.2a. Do you agree with the proposal to renew without amendments the existing National Salmon Byelaws to protect spring salmon stocks?

Please select one item
Wholly
Ticked Partially
Not at all
Please give your reasons and any evidence you have to support your answer.
Treat nets and rods separately.

6.2. Possible options for rod fisheries - catch and release of salmon

Q6.2a (This question is for all consultees to answer and we are seeking your views on the possible options that have been developed). Which is your preferred option for the catch and release of salmon by rod fisheries from those that are set out in Section 6.2: Table 6?

Please select one item
Option 1
Option 2
Option 3
Ticked Option 4
I don't have a preferred option
Please provide details of why you have given this answer.
There is clearly a need for further protection, particularly on rivers at risk or probably at risk, my preferred option would be option 3 except that I am concerned about the lack of detail re changing the status of a river. I fear that once 100% C&R is imposed on some rivers there will be no going back on those rivers, and in due course it will be forced upon others. I would like to see a mechanic for trialling the proposal to monitor the benefit for 3 or 5 years with the status automatically returning to the current position until further consultation is carried out. Also, it would be necessary to demonstrate that all other options have been explored in full eg marine habitat, nets, salmon farm controls. In short, I do not see any value in attacking rod fishermen when their contribution to salmon decline is minimal compared to the commercial sector.

Q6.2b (This questions is for all consultees to answer and is in reference to the answer that you have given to Q6.2a). What are the benefits, if there are any, which you would see from your preferred option for the catch and release of salmon by rod fisheries?

These could be economic as well as social/cultural, please provide details if you are able.
Rod anglers currently return 70% of their catch. Salmon fishing is expensive. The risk of imposing severe C&R limits on rod anglers is that without the option of the odd fish for the pan many will give up. The dangers then include: We are driven to buy more farmed fish from the supermarkets or fish from netsmen, taking more and more fish ever more enticing to them. Angling becomes more and more expensive to those who continue, in due course angling clubs fold and all of the benefits of angling to the rural economy will decline.

Q6.2c (We would like to seek all consultees' views on the use of a voluntary (as opposed to mandatory) approach to deliver increased levels of catch and release). Do you agree with using a voluntary approach to deliver improved catch and release of salmon by rod fisheries?

Please select one item
Ticked Yes
No
I don't know
If no or don't know, please explain your answer and include any dis-benefits that you consider the use of voluntary catch and release would bring.
I say yes only because I am not satisfied with the options for mandatory C&R. If I had confidence in the managed use of compulsory C&R for some rivers according to risk I would change this answer.

Q6.2d (If you answered yes to Q6.2c please answer these questions). Do you support the proposed levels of voluntary catch and release for rivers whose salmon populations are either At Risk, Probably at Risk or Probably Not at Risk (see Section 6.2: Table 6: Option 4)?

Please select one item
Ticked Yes
No
I don't know

Q6.2e (If you answered yes to Q6.2c please also answer this question). What are the benefits that you would see in voluntary catch and release?

These could be economic as well as social/cultural, please provide details if you are able.
Voluntary C&R is effective. 70 % across the sector with 100% on some rivers. If we are to make a difference anglers must be on-side. Any action which threatens anglers will see animosity where cooperation is essential.

Q6.2f (This question is for all consultees). Would you support the voluntary catch and release of all salmon caught (100%) on rivers whose salmon populations are either?

Please select one item
Ticked At Risk
At Risk and Probably at Risk
At Risk, Probably at Risk and Probably Not at Risk
I would not support the voluntary catch and release of all salmon caught
If you wish, please provide us with the reason for your answer.
Please see my answers above re my concerns

Q6.2g (This question is for salmon anglers). Would you stop fishing for salmon if the proposed levels of catch and release were implemented (see Section 6.2: Table 6)?

Please select all that apply
No (I wouldn’t stop fishing whichever option was implemented)
Ticked Yes, if Option 1 was implemented
Yes, if Option 2 was implemented
Yes, if Option 3 was implemented
Yes, if Option 4 was implemented
Please tell us which river(s) you fish for salmon on.
Tyne, Wear

Q6.2h (This question is for salmon anglers). Would you consider moving to a river where lower levels of catch and release were required?

Please select one item
Yes
No
Ticked I don't know
If you wish, please provide us with your reasons for your answer.
Distance , availability and cost would be the major considerations.

6.3. Possible options for rod fisheries - improving survival of released salmon (voluntary measures)

Q6.3a (This question is for all consultees to answer and is about the best practice recommendations for catch and release). Do you agree with the catch and release best practice recommendations?

Please select one item
Ticked Yes, all of them
Some of them
None of them
I don't know
If you wish, please tell us which of them you agree/disagree with and provide us with further information to support your answer.
I would like to see some reference to devices such as Rapala or Rapala type lures. The use of more than one treble hook on these devices needs to end ASAP though because of the way fish take these lures I would prefer to see them outlawed altogether. I do not consider any measures to be meaningful where this style of fishing continues.

Q6.3c (This question is for all consultees to answer and is about other ways that you might improve salmon surviving capture). Are there any other catch and release best practice recommendations that you feel should be included?

Please select one item
Ticked Yes
No
I don't know
If yes, please provide us with the details of these and your reasons why.
outlaw Rapala or Rapala type lures. Maximum 1 hook (single or double) to be use. eg a hook with a trailing treble.

6.4. Possible options for rod fisheries - improving survival of released salmon (mandatory measures)

Q6.4a (This question is for all consultees). Do you consider that having a landing net available to use should be required by byelaw whilst fishing for salmon or sea trout in England and Border Esk?

Please select one item
Ticked Yes
No
I don't know

Q6.4b (This question is for all consultees). Do you consider that a landing net used when fishing for salmon and sea trout should be required by byelaw to have a maximum mesh size of 20mm (as measured across the widest point of the stretched mesh)?

Please select one item
Ticked Yes
No
I don't know

Q6.4c (This question is for all consultees). Do you consider that the use of barbed hooks should be prohibited by byelaw when fishing for salmon or sea trout with flies, lures or bait?

Please select one item
Ticked Yes
No
I don't know

Q6.4d (This question is for all consultees). Do you consider that the use of treble hooks should be prohibited by byelaw when fishing for salmon or sea trout with flies, lures or bait?

Please select one item
Ticked Yes, all should be banned
Yes, but only large treble hooks greater than size 8 should be banned
No, these should not be banned
I don't know

Q6.4e (This question is for all consultees). Do you consider that the use of circle hooks should be mandatory by byelaw when using worm as bait when fishing for salmon or sea trout?

Please select one item
Ticked Yes
No
I don't know

Q6.4f (This question is for all consultees). Should there be restriction on the use of Flying ‘Cs’ when fishing for salmon or sea trout?

Please select one item
Ticked Yes, Flying ‘Cs’ should be banned
Yes, Flying ‘Cs’ should only be allowed with single hooks
No, restrictions should not apply to the use of Flying ‘Cs’
I don't know

Q6.4g (This question is for all consultees). In your opinion, are there other types of equipment that should be prohibited by byelaw when fishing for salmon and sea trout?

Please select one item
Ticked Yes
No
I don't know
Please provide details of what these could be and why you think they should be prohibited or altered.
any device with multiple hooks, eg Secret Weapon, Rapala

7. Further comments

Q7 (This is for all consultees). Please tell us if you have any further comments that you would like to provide on this consultation.

Please provide your further comments here.
While I accept that rod anglers must be seen to play their part and cannot be selfish I worry that the rod angler is unduly and/or disproportionately targeted as a problem. It is clear from much that I read that the major issues lie at sea. Marine survival appears to be the biggest single issue, playing around with 70% or 100% C&R rates is fiddling around the edges until the major issues are resolved. I appreciate that this survey is related to England and the Border Esk but we cannot ignore what is happening in Scotland with fish farming and the decline of those rivers while the authorities ignore scientific evidence because it is politically expedient. We have seen from the recent catches of Pink Salmon that fish more over vast areas. supporting salmon stocks in Scotland will have a benefit on a wider scale. On the subject of Pink Salmon we need to see strong action now to treat these fish as unwelcome non-native invasive species until more is known. We have seen the issues caused by other non-native invasive species when we have tried to act too late. Grey Squirrels v Red. Mink, American Red Clawed Signal Crayfish and more. The five point plan is great, but don't forget the rest.