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Driftnet Ban No Protection For Wild Salmon, Conference Hears

22nd February 2017
Atlantic salmon are moving further north and away from Ireland as sea temperatures rise, according to researchers Atlantic salmon are moving further north and away from Ireland as sea temperatures rise, according to researchers Photo: Hans Petter Fjeld/Wikimedia

#Fishing - Ireland’s stocks of Atlantic wild salmon are in a “serious position” due to the failure of the driftnet fishing ban to stem their decline.

That was the grave message from the annual Salmon Watch Ireland conference in Galway this past weekend, as The Irish Times reports.

Inland Fisheries Ireland chief executive Dr Ciaran Byrne added that conservation measures put in place a decade ago “don’t seem to have worked” as survival rates of salmon returning to Ireland’s rivers have fallen from 20% in 1980 to just 5% today.

Among the factors contributing to this decline, says Dr Byrne, are the impact of fish farming, by-catch from fishing trawlers, and climate change.

Research into the latter by Dr Ken Whelan suggests it has caused an “alarming” rise in salmon dying at sea, prompting stocks to move further north away from Ireland – and ultimately threatening the extinction of Irish salmon.

The Irish Times has much more on the story HERE.

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1 comment

  • Comment Link Nicholas 23rd February 2017 posted by Nicholas

    Not a very accurate assessment.! The reason there are far fewer salmon around, is we are sending out far, far fewer, far weaker and smaller smolt, who are then being crucified by the cage farming induced sea lice. And the reason we have far fewer weaker smolt going out is over 80% of our spawning and nursery areas are completely tunneled over by Alder and Willow. This has gone wild following rural electrification in the mid sixties, which resulted in 50,000 small holders no longer harvesting the stream side trees for firing and concurrently at exactly the same time the demise of forty million rabbits, who had up until then decimated any woody regeneration. Want to read more, go to and click on the Salmon section, where you will see at the bottom a link entitled "the wild salmonid emergency".

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