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Views sought on extension of fisheries trial

Tuesday, 26 July 2016

The public is being asked whether a trial closure of a bay to all but a limited number of lobster and crab fishermen should continue.

LobsterLobster and crab are worth £863,000 a year to the Island's economy and their sustainability is essential to the fishing industry, which is worth £13 million a year overall.

A trial that began four years ago means only members of the Baie ny Carrickey Crustacean Fishery Management Association and local hobby fishermen are permitted to 'pot fish' in the bay. Dredging for scallops in the bay was already illegal.

The fishermen compile detailed data on catches, aiding efforts by the Department of Environment, Food and Agriculture to safeguard fish stocks for the future.

Bye-laws permitting the trial expire in November 2016.

DEFA is consulting the public over whether the trial should be extended for three years so the effects of the management can be better evaluated or whether pot fishing in the area should be unrestricted.

The Department is seeking the views of fishing organisations, seafood processors, environmental groups and those who run marine-related businesses and offer recreational opportunities at sea.

It is also asking for the public's views via

Richard Ronan MHK, Minister for Environment, Food and Agriculture, said landing size restrictions imposed as part of the trial allow lobsters and crabs to produce more young before they are caught.

Although data was variable, there were promising early results in terms of economic returns for fishermen.

'An extension to the trial will enable the full impact of the management measures to be assessed,' the Minister said.

'Our Future Fisheries strategy states we need a sustainable, thriving and well-managed fishing industry providing high-quality seafood, supported by respect for the marine environment.

'Closed fishing areas in several parts of our territorial seas are allowing us to protect spawning populations and nursery habitats for commercial and conservation purposes.

'Baie ny Carrickey is a good example of co-management, where fishermen manage their fishery in collaboration with Government to aid the fishing industry long term.'

Responses to the consultation should be sent to:


Environment Directorate

Fisheries Division

Department of Environment Food and Agriculture

Thie Slieau Whallian

Foxdale Road

St John's


Email:Send Email

by Monday 5th September.

Paper copies of the consultation can be requested at DEFA or by ringing +44 1624 685857.

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