Irish inland fisheries have received a substantial boon following the announcement of the Habitats and Conservation 2021 program that € 774,000 will be awarded to 17 projects in 11 counties to improve fisheries conservation projects, Inland Fisheries Ireland announced.
Under two separate funds, the Salmon and Sea Trout Rehabilitation, Conservation and Protection Fund (SSTRCPF) and the Midland Fisheries Fund (MFF), fishing clubs, commercial fishermen and landowners fishermen were invited to apply for funding to support conservation projects in their local areas. .
Financial assistance under the SSTRCPF was generated by the sale of salmon and sea trout fishing and commercial fishing licenses. The CFP was funded by contributions from the Midlands Group permits.
Of the € 774,000 allocation approved so far this year, funding has gone to projects in Carlow, Cork, Donegal, Galway, Kilkenny, Laois, Limerick, Mayo, Wexford, Westmeath and Wicklow. Examples include:
* Construction of rockfill footbridges to facilitate fish migration upstream and downstream of impassable sills.
* Improved water quality by installing fences to prevent livestock from entering the river and providing water pumps and waterers for livestock to minimize agricultural impacts.
* Encourage the wild regeneration of rivers by planting native Irish trees and shrubs along the riverbanks in combination with fencing.
* Improvement of spawning and nursery habitats for salmon and sea trout.
* Research to improve national management decisions around sea trout.
* Watershed focused feasibility studies, habitat management plans, aquatic invasive species plans, and environmental assessments to improve river habitats and species.
* Soft engineering work to help regenerate land and water adjacent to rivers.
Environment Minister Eamon Ryan said: “The program [improve] habitats, water quality and fish passage at the local level and will also translate into wider environmental benefits.
Further fund allocations may be announced later in the year. The full list of projects can be found at www.fisheriesireland.ie
Catch control proposals
Natural Resources Wales (NRW) has launched two consultations on proposed catch control regulations – one on the Welsh side of the River Severn and one on the Wye and Usk rivers.
Anglers and interested parties are urged to provide their views on the proposed new regulations.
Peter Gough, NRW Fisheries Officer, said: “There are persistent concerns about the number of salmon returning to our rivers and the future of many fisheries is now in jeopardy. Simply put, there are not enough spawning adult fish to maintain stocks at current levels or to prevent further decline.
“We are now seeking views on catch control proposals that will protect vulnerable stocks while maintaining the significant environmental and economic benefits associated with fishing.”
Rescue at sea on your screen
A new series of Saving Lives at Sea returns tomorrow evening (Tuesday August 24). Tune in to BBC 2 at 8 p.m. to witness some impressive rescues.
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