EU fishermen accused of plundering British stocks with ‘destructive’ fishing method | UK | New
Known as fly shooting – the practice involves using multiple nets to circle and catch entire schools of fish. Heavy ropes then drag the nets across the ocean floor, moving anything below.
There were originally only a handful of fly shooters in British waters, but their numbers have now grown to 75 high powered boats using the bass and mule method.
The method has been compared to pulse fishing which uses electricity to catch fish.
It was banned by the UK after we left the EU due to concerns about its effect on stocks.
Now fly shooting is attracting the same criticism and outrage from British fishermen who catch sustainably.
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In a letter to the ministry, they said: “We are concerned about the marked increase in the presence of very large and powerful fly shooters which are increasingly present in our western waters.
“We have received an increasing number of calls in recent years regarding the fishing effort and the impacts of these vessels in the eastern Channel, particularly with regard to over-quota stocks.
“It seems from our perspective that their presence in Western Waters is somewhat of the marine equivalent of a land grab and this has not been helped by the lack of reported data on the number of vessels using this. fishing method and their catches. historically or currently. “
They want the licenses to be overhauled and say the new Fisheries Act gives the UK the power to act.
Mr Percy told the Telegraph: ‘The UK’s under-ten fleet has been hanging on with their fingertips for years, increasingly reliant on less and less species, surrounded by everyone, from the EU fleet stationed on our six-mile line to increased calls for coastal MPAs, capped permits, promises of a fair distribution of many-broken quotas, a draconian permit regime and more. restrictions on the few species we are allowed to take.
“Yet a fleet of high-impact foreign vessels that provide virtually no social, economic or environmental benefit to our coastal communities are allowed to fish our waters while the powers that be decide on longer-term access.
“Closing the door after the horse has locked occurs to me.”