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SFPA Publishes List of Fish Species Banned from Commercial Exploitation in Irish EEZ

27th July 2023
The Velvet Belly (Etmopterus spinax) is a fish species whose commercial exploitation is currently prohibited in Irish EEZ waters
The Velvet Belly (Etmopterus spinax) is a fish species whose commercial exploitation is currently prohibited in Irish EEZ waters Credit: Wikimedia

A list of fish species prohibited from commercial exploitation in the Irish exclusive economic zone has been published by the Sea-Fisheries Protection Authority (SFPA).

Protected species include all species officially protected across a range of international conventions and legislation, it states.

These are defined as species that are legally protected, are considered vulnerable as assessed by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), or may be considered vulnerable to the effects of fishing activities due to low stocks or mortality rates.

“Legislation and policies in place for the conservation of prohibited species are deliberated at a global, national, and regional level,” the SFPA states.

“It is important that commercial fishers should minimise their effects on protected species through the appropriate measures detailed… to monitor and reduce bycatch,” it states.

The key areas covered in the fisheries information notice issued by the SFPA include:

*prohibited species recorded in the Irish EEZ.

*visual representation of prohibited species for identification.

*characteristics of each species to aid accurate identification as well as the care, return to sea and recording requirements for fishers in the event of accidental catch.

The details are on FFSU-FC-FIN-OC-06-23 Fish Species Prohibited from Commercial Exploitation in Irish EEZ waters here

Published in SFPA Team

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About the Sea Fisheries Protection Authority (SFPA)

The Sea-Fisheries Protection Authority was established on the 1st of January 2007. The SFPA is independent in the exercise of its functions, which are below.

The principal functions of the Authority are:

  1. To secure efficient and effective enforcement of sea-fisheries law and food safety law
  2. To promote compliance with & deter contraventions of sea-fisheries law and food safety law
  3. To detect contraventions of sea-fisheries law and food safety law
  4. To provide information to the sea-fisheries and seafood sectors on sea-fisheries law and food safety law and relevant matters within the remit of the Authority, through the Consultative Committee established under section 48 of the above Act or by any other means it considers appropriate
  5. To advise the Minister in relation to policy on effective implementation of sea-fisheries law and food safety law
  6. To provide assistance and information to the Minister in relation to the remit of the Authority
  7. To collect and report data in relation to sea fisheries and food safety as required by the Minister and under Community law
  8. To represent or assist in the representation of the State at national, Community and international fora as requested by the Minister, and
  9. To engage in any other activities relating to the functions of the Authority as may be approved of by the Minister.