Bass anglers need to come forward to give their views on the retrictions brought in on their sport.

The online survey, organised through the University of Southampton by Alex Maydew, a Masters student and keen angler, takes less than five minutes and aims to evaluate the impacts that recent EU landing restrictions and strict bag limits have had on the fishing habits of recreational bass anglers.

Bass anglers are justifiably angry at the unfair and wholly disproportionate restrictions that have been imposed on them by Fisheries Ministers across Europe, with a zero bag limit followed by a one-fish-only limit during the second half of the year. Their anger was compounded when increased vessel catch limits were awarded to inshore gill netters and hook and line fishermen with a four-month derogation from the six-month moratorium on bass landings.

Martin Salter, National Campaigns Coordinator at the Angling Trust, said: “The Angling Trust and BASS are gathering evidence on the economic impacts on charter boat bookings, the tackle trade and the local economy of the unfair landing restrictions that were imposed on recreational bass anglers last December. We will be supporting a range of initiatives and undertaking a variety of surveys to assess this but we also need to hear from bass anglers themselves.”

“We are asking anglers to find five minutes to complete the survey. All the information will be used to build a strong case that we can put forward to ministers to seek to influence the outcome of the Council of European Fisheries Ministers meeting in December 2016 to ensure that this time we get a better deal for bass and for bass anglers.”

Survey creator Alex Maydew emphasised: “It’s fantastic to be working with bass anglers as part of my project. I have a keen interest in the conservation efforts surrounding the species and being able to work closely with organisations like the Angling Trust and BASS means that my efforts will have much wider significance. I work in the angling industry myself, and I completely empathise with the dissatisfaction that bass anglers feel.”

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