uses cookies to make the site simpler. Find out more about cookies

Fisheries Division

Who we are and what we do

The Fisheries Division of the Department of Environment, Food and Agriculture (DEFA) undertakes to manage and protect fisheries and their supporting ecosystems within the Island and its territorial sea.

Licencing and enforcement are key to the management and protection of our fisheries. Monitoring of fishery stock levels and scientific-data assist our efforts; we also work with the fishing industry, anglers, wildlife and marine conservation groups and other stakeholders.

Please click the relevant button(s) below to visit our webpages.

button_Vessel licencing    button_Commercial fishing

Button _Recreational Fishing    button_Fish buyers and sellers

button_Legislation policy enforcement    button_Hobby crab and lobster potting

Button _Marine Conservation    button_Fisheries science

UK licence condition affecting 10m & under vessels: digital catch recording

Category A (10m and under) licensed vessels have been had their UK licence varied to include Condition 13, which will introduce a digital catch recording system for this sector of the fleet.

Note that this reporting obligation is:
  • to be introduced in a phased approach based on overall vessel length between the dates of 22 November 2019 and 14 February 2020; and
  • applies to 10m and under vessels fishing in UK waters.
Therefore, if you intend to fish in UK waters, please contact the Department for Environment, Food and Agriculture (DEFA) on +44 1624 685857 or email in order to be registered for the digital catch recording system.

Please note that DEFA is looking to introduce this same digital catch recording system for 10m and under vessels that fish in the Isle of Man Territorial Sea in the near future. More information on registering for this system would follow in due course.
Important engine power notice for owners of Isle of Man registered fishing vessels
Local queen scallop fishermen are invited to make application for grant funding to diversify, during an eight-week application window.  Additional funding under the Agriculture and Fisheries Grant Scheme has been made available to industry to support diversification. Applications will be accepted between 23rd September and 18th November 2019. For more information please see /QSCgrants
Please note that the fishing restriction in the Douglas bank area of Manx waters remains in place through the Isle of Man's domestic Sea-Fisheries (Technical Measures) Bye-Laws 2000, Part III (Restrictions on fishing for Herring), Section 18 (1) - Subject to paragraph (2), no person shall retain on board herring which are caught from 21 September to 15 November within that part of the territorial sea lying within that part of ICES Division VIIa bounded by the following co-ordinates:
  • The East coast of the Island at Latitude 54˚ 20'N
  • Latitude 54˚ 20'N, Longitude 003˚ 40'W
  • Latitude 53˚ 50'N, Longitude 003˚ 50'W
  • Latitude 53˚ 50'N, Longitude 004˚ 50'W
  • The south-west coast of the Island at longitude 004˚ 50'W
The summary of the results from the survey on the potential business impacts of the introduction of catch recording for under 10m fishing vessels is now available.
Landing Obligation will apply to the Isle of Man fisheries from 1 January 2019


EU Exit
Currently the UK will be leaving the EU by no later than 31 January 2020 and fisheries businesses in the Isle of Man need to prepare for EU exit. Please use the guidance below to find out what will be needed, including advice on the addition documentation required for export if the UK leaves without a deal.

Please note that until Brexit takes place, businesses that export fish or fishery products to the EU, or fishermen that land their catch directly into EU ports, can continue to trade with the EU as they do now.

Information for Isle of Man Vessel Owners in the event of a no deal Brexit – If you intend to make a direct landing into an EU country

Isle of Man Buyer and Sellers: If you currently export fish to the EU, you'll need to use the new digital services to create catch certificates and other export documents. Register today to prepare for a no deal Brexit.

Give prior notification to land fish in the EU. In a no-deal Brexit, you’ll need to give prior notification before you land fish directly from your UK flagged vessel in an EU designated port.

The UK have produced guidance on Exporting and importing fish if there’s no Brexit deal.

Partnership pack: preparing for changes at the UK border after a no deal EU exit. This partnership pack is designed to help you support businesses preparing for day one in the event of a no deal exit.

The UK government have prepared guidance for business to prepare for EU exit.

Technical Notices on Brexit, including fisheries matters, are on the Brexit Technical Notices webpage (under the Fourth Tranche).

The Department for Enterprise has issued a checklist for businesses in preparation for the outcome of Brexit negotiations next year. has compiled a guide for the UK seafood industry on preparing your business for EU exit

The UK have produced guidance on exporting animals, animal products, fish and fishery products to the EU after EU Exit.

MMO Press Release: Fishermen urged to be Brexit ready by registering with the IMO

The Isle of Man Government has launched an online Brexit checklist for Isle of Man food manufacturers

UKFAs prepare licensing for commercial fishing in non-UK waters after Brexit
A licensing authority has been set up to ensure UK licenced fishermen have the correct licences to fish legally in line with any negotiated agreements, in non-UK waters.

Steps to land fishery products into the EU after Brexit
Import to and export from the EU will change after Brexit. These flowcharts explain the new processes for landing fishery products into the EU.

Seafood exporters: steps to export fishery products to the EU after Brexit

Environment Directorate

Fisheries Division

Department of Environment Food and Agriculture

Thie Slieau Whallian

Foxdale Road

St John's


Telephone:+44 1624 685857

Email:Send Email

Did you find what you were looking for?
Back to top