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Fishing: Netting Restrictions

Volume 712: debated on Tuesday 30 June 2009

Question

Asked by

To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to ensure that United Kingdom fishermen use fishing nets adapted to reduce discards, as suggested by the Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science. [HL4469]

UK fisheries departments continue to fund a range of work, in collaboration with the industry, looking at making the respective fishing activity more selective in terms of either species or size. The industry is encouraged to use any such gear modifications which prove successful. For example, the UK has been working with the industry on ways to avoid North Sea cod, but still allow fishermen to continue to fish stocks such as North Sea haddock. We have instigated a system whereby fishers are granted additional fishing days where they adhere to closures to avoid spawning or young cod, and are willing to change gear that catches fewer young fish, or create fishing plans that commit to significantly reducing cod discards.