A ‘New Era’ for Irish Pike, Bass and Trout
National policies for the management of trout, pike and bass have been launched by Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI).
National policies for the management of trout, pike and bass have been launched by Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI), the state agency responsible for the protection, conservation, management and promotion of Ireland’s inland fisheries and sea angling resources.
Speaking at the launch, IFI chairman, Mr Brendan O’Mahony, commented:
“These policies are the first national species policies to be issued from IFI and in this regard represent a new era for fisheries management in Ireland. The policies will provide for the better conservation and management of bass, pike and trout in Ireland and will help ensure sustainability of stocks into the future. In addition, they will allow for improved angling, economic impacts and help to sustain and improve the many jobs that are supported by recreational angling in Ireland.”
The three policy documents have been formulated, through a rigorous consultation process, by groups comprising: fisheries scientists; angling federations; and industry representatives.
The recommendations will now be brought forward and put into practice by IFI. Where required IFI will seek legislative changes to underpin and support the policies, which will be reviewed after a period of three years.
The main recommendations put forward include:
For Bass: a reduction in the daily angling bag limit from two to one fish in any 24 hour period; an increase in the minimum landing size; and a review of the closed season.
For Pike: in designated, managed wild brown trout fisheries, the current bye-law is recommended to be amended to prohibit the killing of any pike greater than or equal to 85 cm in length; all larger rod-caught pike should be returned to the water alive; in all other waters of the State an angler will be permitted to take and kill one pike of less than or equal to 50 cm in length (as per the existing bye-law); additionally, the policy calls for further research into pike movement and transfer programmes.
For Trout: a national minimum size limit; national bag limits; designation of a number of lakes and rivers sections as wild brown trout fisheries; in addition to other measures.
Dr Ciaran Byrne, CEO of Inland Fisheries Ireland added:
“I would like to thank all who assisted with the formulation of these policies, and I would also like to acknowledge the passion and understanding that all of the groups have for their species of interest: the environment; habitat; and pressures that they face. The challenge now is to implement these policies through the work of IFI, angling practices, and where necessary, with legislative support. I look forward to progressing these policies with the same collaborative approach as used in their formulation.”
For more information and to access the policy documents, visit www.fisheriesireland.ie.