Mr Fergus O’Dowd T.D., Minister of State at the Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources, has approved a suite of regulations and bye-laws that will govern the wild salmon fishery in 2013. These will come into effect from Tuesday 1 January 2013.
Minister O’Dowd said “Next year I am pleased to note 94 rivers open for angling activity in in 2013. Sixty two rivers will be fully open while a further 32 will be open for angling on a “catch & release” basis. This will provide opportunities for commercial fishermen and anglers to share this important resource on a sustainable basis.”
“Last year I lowered the cost of fishing licences and I have decided to maintain that price cut for 2013. I am anxious that lower costs will encourage sales of annual licences and incentivise angling tourists to avail of the Ireland’s first-class angling product.”, he added .Minister O Dowd received management and scientific advice on the current status of Irish salmon stocks fromInland FisheriesIreland and considered submissions received through the public consultation exercise. Based on this he has introduced conservation measures for the management of the wild salmon and sea trout fishery in 2013.
In all, the Independent Standing Scientific Committee for Salmon (SSCE) assessed 152 rivers and have advised that:-
• 62 rivers are open as a surplus of fish has been identified in these rivers;
• 32 rivers have been classified as open for angling on a “catch and release” basis only; and
• 58 rivers are closed as they have no surplus of fish available for harvest in them.
The Wild Salmon and Sea Trout Tagging Scheme Regulations for 2013 are in essence unchanged from the Regulations which were introduced for 2012. A number of minor amendments to the Regulations, recommended by Inland Fisheries Ireland, will provide for more effective administration of the tagging scheme regulations in 2013.
Summary of main changes to the management of the wild salmon fishery in 2013
4 Rivers which were closed in 2012 will open for angling on a “catch & release” basis in 2013:-
Lower Liffey – downstream of Leixlip Dam (Dublin fishery district)
Owenavorragh (Wexford fishery district)
Barrow & Pollmounty (Waterford fishery district)
Lackagh (Letterkenny fishery district)
3 Rivers which were open in 2012 will be limited to “catch & release” in 2013:-
Blackwater Kerry (Kerry fishery district)
Ferta (Kerry fishery district)
1 River which was open for angling on a “catch and release” basis in 2012 will be closed in 2013:-
Behy (Kerry fishery district)
3 Rivers which were open for angling on a “catch and release” basis in 2012 will be open in 2013:-
Glengarriff (Cork fishery district)
Clady (Letterkenny fishery district)
Tullaghobegley (Letterkenny fishery district)
4 Rivers which were open for angling on a “catch and release” basis until 11May in 2012 and open from 12 May 2012 will be open in 2013:-
Nore (Waterford fishery district)
Suir (Waterford fishery district)
Bandon (Cork fishery district)
Newport (Bangor fishery district)
Wild Salmon and Sea Trout Tagging Scheme Regulations, 2012 provide for, among other things, the total allowable catch of fish that can be harvested by commercial fishing engines and rod and line from identified rivers.
Conservation of Salmon and Sea trout (bag limits) Bye-law No. 901, 2012 provides for an annual bag limit of 10 fish being either salmon or sea trout (over 40 cm) per angler and provides for a season bag limit of 3 fish in the period 1 January to 11 May, a daily bag limit of 3 fish from 12 May to 31 August and a daily bag limit of 1 fish from 1 September to the end of the season. The Bye-law also provides for the use of single barbless hooks and prohibits the use of worms as bait once the specified number of fish have been caught in the specified periods.
Conservation of Salmon and Sea trout (catch and release) Bye-law No. 902, 2012 provides for catch and release in respect of salmon and sea trout (over 40 cm) in rivers that are meeting at least 65% of their Conservation Limit as mentioned in the Bye-law. The Bye-law also provides for the use of single barbless hooks and prohibits the use of worms as bait in angling for salmon and sea trout over 40 cm.
Conservation of Salmon and Sea trout (closed rivers) Bye-law No. C.S. 313, 2012 prohibits the taking or attempting to take by rod and line salmon and sea trout over 40 cm in the rivers specified in the Bye-law.