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Dundalk Sea Trout Symposium Focuses On Species Management & Conservation

23rd October 2015

#MarineScience - Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI) and Northern Ireland’s Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure (DCAL) welcomed delegates to the second International Sea Trout Symposium, which took place this week from 20-22nd October in Dundalk.

The symposium’s key objective was to promote the wider application of an evidence-based approach to the future management and regulation of the sea trout. It also considered developments since the last symposium, held in 2004, and highlighted priorities for future investigation.

International scientists, managers and policymakers interested in the conservation and protection of the sea trout attended the conference.

Sea trout is a valuable natural resource in Ireland, offering an exceptional angling experience to both tourists and locals. Irish fisheries managers are therefore very focused on the sustainable management, and, where required, the restoration of these valuable stocks. Outputs of the symposium will be used to develop national sea trout policies.

Northern Ireland’s Minister for Culture, Arts and Leisure Carál Ní Chuilín commented: “Last year I brought in new legislation to protect both salmon and sea trout in our native rivers. All salmon and sea trout caught must be released back into the water, unless those rivers are meeting ‎their management targets.

“We are delighted to be working with Inland Fisheries Ireland in advancing our knowledge of this species so that we all can enhance our understanding of their complex life history and ensure that we are taking all the necessary steps not only to conserve them but also to enhance stocks in our rivers.”

Meanwhile, Joe McHugh TD, Minister of State at the Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources, expressed his appreciation for "all the scientists, managers and fisheries stakeholders on their passion and enthusiasm in extending their knowledge and understanding of sea trout management and conservation.

"The presence of this iconic migrant, which leaves freshwater and wanders our coastal waters to feed heavily before returning to its natal streams to spawn, is considered by many as a very positive environmental indicator. I look to Inland Fisheries Ireland to ensure that sustainable management of sea trout is prioritised, and that the loss of sea trout populations, which has occurred in some areas, is halted."

Minister McHugh added: “I will work with Inland Fisheries Ireland to ensure that serious efforts are made to restore and conserve this valuable component of biodiversity in Ireland. I also applaud the North-South approach being taken in supporting science and management issues; this is required to ensure the future effective management of sea trout stocks."

Published in Marine Science
MacDara Conroy

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MacDara Conroy

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MacDara Conroy is a contributor covering all things on the water, from boating and wildlife to science and business

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Marine Science Perhaps it is the work of the Irish research vessel RV Celtic Explorer out in the Atlantic Ocean that best highlights the essential nature of marine research, development and sustainable management, through which Ireland is developing a strong and well-deserved reputation as an emerging centre of excellence. From Wavebob Ocean energy technology to aquaculture to weather buoys and oil exploration these pages document the work of Irish marine science and how Irish scientists have secured prominent roles in many European and international marine science bodies.


At A Glance – Ocean Facts

  • 71% of the earth’s surface is covered by the ocean
  • The ocean is responsible for the water cycle, which affects our weather
  • The ocean absorbs 30% of the carbon dioxide added to the atmosphere by human activity
  • The real map of Ireland has a seabed territory ten times the size of its land area
  • The ocean is the support system of our planet.
  • Over half of the oxygen we breathe was produced in the ocean
  • The global market for seaweed is valued at approximately €5.4 billion
  • · Coral reefs are among the oldest ecosystems in the world — at 230 million years
  • 1.9 million people live within 5km of the coast in Ireland
  • Ocean waters hold nearly 20 million tons of gold. If we could mine all of the gold from the ocean, we would have enough to give every person on earth 9lbs of the precious metal!
  • Aquaculture is the fastest growing food sector in the world – Ireland is ranked 7th largest aquaculture producer in the EU
  • The Atlantic Ocean is the second largest ocean in the world, covering 20% of the earth’s surface. Out of all the oceans, the Atlantic Ocean is the saltiest
  • The Pacific Ocean is the largest ocean in the world. It’s bigger than all the continents put together
  • Ireland is surrounded by some of the most productive fishing grounds in Europe, with Irish commercial fish landings worth around €200 million annually
  • 97% of the earth’s water is in the ocean
  • The ocean provides the greatest amount of the world’s protein consumed by humans
  • Plastic affects 700 species in the oceans from plankton to whales.
  • Only 10% of the oceans have been explored.
  • 8 million tonnes of plastic enter the ocean each year, equal to dumping a garbage truck of plastic into the ocean every minute.
  • 12 humans have walked on the moon but only 3 humans have been to the deepest part of the ocean.

(Ref: Marine Institute)

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