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New UK lobster proposals

Published by FiskerForum, 07-04-2017 · info@fiskerforum.dk

Proposals protecting lobsters and crawfish to support the sustainability of England’s £103 million shellfish industry have been set out by Fisheries Minister George Eustice.

Fishermen, coastal communities and anyone involved in the shellfish sector are being asked to comment on proposals for a coordinated national ban on catching and landing egg-bearing (berried) lobsters and crawfish, in place of the current patchwork of regional bans, preventing overfishing and improving long-term sustainability of these species.

According to DEFRA, the latest scientific evidence indicates these stocks are being overfished, and that taking action now would mean healthier stock levels, with greater numbers of eggs given the chance to develop to maturity, providing long-term benefits for the fishing industry.

Almost £20 million worth of lobster and crawfish were landed in English ports in 2015.

‘Our seafood sector is world-class, supporting many jobs and generating millions for our economy. That is why we must take measures to protect the long term sustainability of our lobsters and crawfish as they harbour their eggs in our waters,’ George Eustice said as the consultation launched.

‘This consultation is an important opportunity to strike a balance that will improve our marine environment and provide for our important coastal communities. I encourage everyone with an interest to share their views on the future conservation of lobsters and crawfish.’

Local bans on landing berried lobsters and crawfish are already in place in certain Inshore Fisheries Conservation Authorities (IFCAs) districts, but a national ban around England would provide a consistent framework and support the recovery of these important species.  

The closing date for ‘Consultation on the Prohibition on Landing Egg-Bearing (‘Berried’) Lobsters and Crawfish in England’ is 15th May. The consultation documentation is available here.

Source: DEFRA

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