The history books will have a new entry for August 2002 after the Devon Sea Fisheries Committee agreed to make a byelaw that will create the first No
Take Zone (NTZ) in the
NTZs in other parts of the world have proved to be an efficient method of
fisheries management whereby zones are closed to prevent the removal of all marine organisms by any method.
The benefit to the fishery and the environment is that the seabed is left
undisturbed and the fish are left to spawn. As a result the whole ecology
within the area improves, the fish stocks recover and the area around the
edge improves considerably after only a few years.
Angling Organisations and the British Fishing Industry has for some time
debated the benefits and disadvantages of establishing NTZ¹s around the
coastline of the UK and the area around Lundy is most suitable. It is a
Marine Nature Reserve and subject to control of fishing by byelaws. The area
is also a candidate Special Area of Conservation (cSAC), and English Nature
(EN) have a legal obligation under SAC’s status to protect areas which are
important habitats or where there are important species.
The DSF has worked in partnership with the English Nature to create the
byelaw, which will ban all forms of fishing for a two-mile area, on the
eastern side of the island where rare species can be found. Those species
according to the EN studies include fish species of interest to sea anglers
in particular conger, pollack, plaice lesser spotted dogfish, nine different
species of wrasse, also other species such as angler fish, John Dory and the
grey triggerfish.
The bye law which passed its first hurdle last week, will now be published
and the formal consultation will begin, when all interested parties will be
able to make comment.
The area is only 3.3sq km in total and is situated on the eastern side of
Lundy. The impact on the sea angler will be minimal and it is expected that
only a few charter boats operating out of the North Devon Ports will be
affected and they have already been consulted by DSF.
If the
UK‘s first NTZ is proved to be successful, this initiative will pave
the way towards other NTZ being established elsewhere and anglers must
support such moves.

Total Sea Fishing