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Displaying items by tag: Inland Fisheries Ireland

Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI) has launching its recruitment drive to hire 36 seasonal fisheries officers for 2023.

Subject to funding, the six-month posts are divided across seven River Basin Districts, covering 15 counties, with recruitment getting underway immediately.

Seasonal fisheries officers will join teams over the summer months to help protect, conserve and develop fisheries resources working in and around Ireland’s lakes, rivers and coastlines.

The State agency responsible for the protection, conservation, development and promotion of freshwater fish, habitats and sea angling is looking for candidates for both protection and development roles and they will play a crucial part in the agency’s plans for 2023,

Launching the recruitment drive on Friday (3 February), IFI’s HR director Róisín Bradley said: “Our new seasonal fisheries officers will be joining us to help protect, maintain and conserve this country’s natural resources.

?As an environmental agency, enforcement, protection and development are a big focus for us. Our teams undertake over 30,000 patrols around the clock every year, including patrols by foot, e-bike, vehicle and boat. At the same time, our development teams ensure the sustainability of fisheries habitat, enabling access for this generation and for future generations.

“Our Officers working in protection will spend a lot of their time patrolling lakes, rivers and coastlines. While Officers working in development will also spend a lot of their time around lakes and rivers, as they build, repair and maintain structures. Those that enjoy being close to nature and working outdoors, in all types of weather, are likely to find these roles very appealing and rewarding.”

Applications are now open online at fisheriesireland.ie/careers. The closing date is Tuesday 21 February.

IFI says it plans to launch a second recruitment drive in the coming weeks for seasonal research assistants.

Published in Angling

Lagan Materials Ltd in Bweeng, Mallow, Co Cork, now trading as Breedon Ireland, were convicted and fined €3,000 at Mallow District Court on Monday 9 January following a prosecution taken by Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI).

The defendants did not appear before the Court and Judge Joanne Carroll expressed surprise and disappointment at their absence.

After hearing evidence from senior fisheries environmental officer Andrew Gillespie, Judge Carroll convicted the quarry operator under Section 173 (1)(d) of the Fisheries (Consolidation) Act 1959 and Section 3(1) of the Local Government (Water Pollution) Act 1977 for allowing a discharge to the Clydagh River in the townland of Carrigcleena, Bweeng, Mallow on 12 November 2021.

The Clydagh River is an important nursery habitat and tributary of the Munster Blackwater.

Convictions were also recorded and taken into consideration in relation to two further charges under Sections 171(1) and 173(1)(c) of the 1959 Act.

Sean Long, director of the South-Western River Basin District (SWRBD) at IFI welcomed the conviction, noting that salmonid habitats are incredibly sensitive and urged quarry operators to take all measures to minimise the risk of harmful discharges to waters.

He added that “while the overall level of compliance is high, fisheries environmental officers in the South-West detected 99 incidents of habitat and water quality infringement in 2022 and every incident is one too many”.

Published in Angling

Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI) has launched the tender process to appoint a consultant engineer to prepare an options report for fish passage improvement works at the Annacotty Weir on the lower Mulkear River outside Limerick.

IFI is leading the Annacotty Fish Passage Project as the State agency with responsibility for fish in rivers such as the Mulkear.

The options report must consider all environmental and engineering circumstances that are present at the site, upstream and downstream of the weir.

Anyone interested in this tender is advised to register on the eTenders website to access all tender documentation including the scoping document and service requirements.

The deadline for submitting tenders is 5pm on Tuesday 14 March and can only be done via the eTenders website.

As detailed in the tender documents, the options report is to be based on several environmental and technical surveys, using a recognised decision matrix, together with a stakeholder decision matrix. The appointed consultants will then present a preferred option for fish pass improvement works at Annacotty Weir.

The consultants will also be required to attend project meetings and public consultation meetings to outline their findings to stakeholders.

Following the approval of the preferred option, the consultants will then be required to prepare design, calculations and drawings of the preferred option.

These will be sent to the Department of the Environment, Climate and Communications and the OPW (Office of Public Works) for licences and approvals.

The consultants will be required to prepare a planning application of the preferred option for Limerick City and County Council.

Subject to planning permission being granted, the consultants will be required to prepare construction drawings and tender documents for the hire of a construction company. They will also be required to assist IFI in the tender assessment process.

The consultants will then be required to oversee the construction phase of the preferred option and sign-off on the completed project.

For full details see the the eTenders website HERE.

Published in Angling

To boost conservation efforts, anglers who wish to catch and keep wild salmon from Cork’s Lower River Lee in Cork in 2023 are advised by Inland Fisheries Ireland that ‘brown tag’ regulations are coming into force from Wednesday 1 February.

The measures are included in the Wild Salmon and Sea Trout Tagging Scheme (Amendment) Regulations, recently signed into law by the Minister for the Environment, Climate and Communications, Eamon Ryan TD.

Under brown tag regulations, an angler who wishes to ‘harvest’ a wild salmon (ie take or keep it) must attach a brown tag as well as a standard blue tag to the fish.

To help conserve stocks of wild salmon within the Lower River Lee, No 5 or Cork District, a total of 180 brown tags — 28 more than that issued in 2022 — will be available for the season and will be distributed to anglers with a 2023 rod licence through a series of online lotteries.

Up to a quarter of the available number of brown tags can be issued at one time, under the Wild Salmon and Seatrout Tagging Scheme Regulations. Therefore, 45 brown tags will be selected through the first online lottery on Friday 27 January.

Any anglers interested in entering the first draw are invited to email their request to Inland Fisheries Ireland at [email protected] from Wednesday 11 until Wednesday 25 January. Within this email, anglers must provide their name, contact address, contact telephone number and they must also quote their 2023 Salmon Licence number.

Anglers with a 2023 rod licence who are not allocated a brown tag are only permitted to fish for salmon on a ‘catch and release’ basis on the Lower River Lee, where the salmon is returned safely to the same waterbody.

Further details are available from Inland Fisheries Ireland’s website or by phoning its Macroom office on (026) 41221.

The brown tag regulations come into force on the Lower River Lee in Cork from 1 February and will remain in place until midnight on 30 September.

Published in Angling

Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI) has announced details of its 2023 Sponsorship Programme today, with applications open until mid January.

Angling clubs, groups and associations all over Ireland are being invited to apply for sponsorship funding before the 20 January deadline.

In 2023, the €30,000 fund will have a particular focus on initiatives aimed at beginners and young anglers, as well as events that promote sustainable angling tourism in rural areas.

The sponsorship programme is one of the main funding mechanisms used by IFI, the State agency with responsibility for the protection and conservation of freshwater fish and habitats and the promotion of recreational angling.

IFI awarded funding to 50 angling events and initiatives across the country in 2022.

These included national or international competitions and festivals that showcased Ireland’s angling resources and contribution to local economies; coaching and juvenile outreach events were also supported, to help increase participation in the sport, along with public awareness events and angling-related initiatives.

Anglers pose at a long table with trophies and prizes at an event sponsored by Inland Fisheries IrelandThis could be your angling competition in 2023, if your club submits an application for sponsorship support before the 20 January deadline

Launching the call, Suzanne Campion of IFI said: “Understandably, COVID-19 has had a big impact on the staging of events over the last couple of years.

“As we look ahead to 2023 with greater optimism, our top priority is supporting projects and events that encourage more young people and beginners to try angling sustainably, as well as initiatives that help grow sustainable angling tourism here in Ireland, especially in rural parts of the country.

“Our teams are seeing greater levels of interest in angling, especially when you consider the associated health and wellbeing benefits of being outdoors. For example, nearly one in five Irish adults are ‘likely’ to try angling in the future, according to Amárach Research.

“In addition to supporting those who would like to go fishing for the first time, we also have a unique opportunity through the Sponsorship Programme to highlight the importance of biodiversity, conservation and sustainable angling.”

Applications for funding from the Sponsorship Programme are now invited from angling clubs, associations or any local group organising an angling initiative in 2023.

The programme will remain open for funding applications until Friday 20 January. Meanwhile, applications for equipment, staff support and biosecurity assistance can be made to IFI throughout the year.

If your club or organisation would like to apply for support from the IFI Sponsorship Programme in 2023, you can find out more on the IFI website HERE.

Published in Angling

Two Carlow men have been found guilty of fishing illegally for protected wild salmon on the River Slaney and for obstructing or impeding a fisheries officer, in a prosecution brought by Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI).

Sitting before Judge Geraldine Carthy at Carlow District Court earlier this month (Thursday 1 December), Shane Rooney of Park Avenue, Phellim Wood in Tullow and Adam Keegan of Slaney View Drive in Tullow were found guilty of all charges against them.

On the evening of 29 March this year, a covert protection operation was carried out by a specialist fisheries unit, supported by local staff. This was at a time of year when wild salmon were extremely vulnerable during the ‘spring run’ up the River Slaney.

In the townland of Kilcarry, on the freshwater portion of the River Slaney, the two defendants were observed illegally fishing for wild salmon during the closed season, using pieces of angling equipment that were contrary to bye-laws.

Rooney was fined €1,500 and ordered to pay a further €750 towards prosecution costs for the three charges against him. These were: obstructing or impeding a fisheries officer contrary to Section 301 (Fisheries Consolidation Act, 1959); using or attempting to use a lure other than artificial fly using single or double barbless hooks, contrary to Bye-law No. 992 of 2021; and using or attempting to use any fish hooks other than single or double barbless hooks contrary to Bye-law No. 989 of 2021.

Keegan, who had pleaded guilty, received a €400 fine in respect of the breach of Article 5(a) of Bye-law No. 992 of 2021 (using or attempting to use a lure other than artificial fly using single or double barbless hooks) and Judge Carthy took the remaining two charges into consideration, which were obstructing or impeding a fisheries officer contrary to Section 301 (Fisheries Consolidation Act, 1959) and assaulting or obstructing fisheries officer contrary to Section 308 (Fisheries Consolidation Act, 1959).

Both men also had their fishing rods and reels seized.

Commenting on the case, Lynda Connor, director of the South-Eastern River Basin District at IFI said: “The River Slaney has an early spring run of wild Atlantic salmon, so these migratory species are especially vulnerable at that time and require as much protection as possible.

“The illegal fishing of wild salmon puts the survival of this protected species into jeopardy, not just in rivers here in the south-east like the Slaney, Nore, Barrow and Suir, but in every Irish river.”

Connor added: “Breaches of fisheries legislation highlight the ongoing issue of illegal fishing activity. At Inland Fisheries Ireland, we have a zero-tolerance approach to serious environmental crime and we initiate prosecutions, where possible. I would like to commend the fisheries protection Officers and their commitment to protecting this vulnerable species.”

Published in Angling

The tender process for IFI State fisheries for 2023 is now open.

Angling clubs that wish to tender for one or more fisheries should fill out the online questionnaire or download and complete the PDF application form.

Where there is a fishery in freshwater, there is a right to fish, and Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI) owns the fishing rights to a wide range of these fisheries in Ireland, ranging from picturesque small lakes to long river stretches and everything in between.

State-owned fishing rights are made available for licence to interested angling clubs every year and IFI generally has licence agreements with over 50 fishing clubs, allowing them to fish on more than 90 fisheries where the rights are State-owned.

Tenders will be accepted up until Friday 6 January 2023; proof of postage on or before this date will be accepted.

Those returning their applications by post should mark their envelope with TENDER APPLICATION and send it to:

Paul O’Reilly,
Business Development,
Inland Fisheries Ireland,
3044 Lake Drive,
Citywest,
Dublin 24

If your club is interested in a longer-term licence, fill out the relevant section on your form and IFI will be in touch with you. IFI also reminds applicants to tender the ‘per year’ licence fee.

Queries relating to State fisheries or the 2023 tender process should be directed to Paul O’Reilly at [email protected]

Published in Angling

State-owned forestry company Coillte and its contractor, Oliver Kelly Timber Harvesting Ltd, have both pleaded guilty to breaches of the Fisheries (Consolidation) Act 1959 in a case brought by Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI).

Following reports of pollution in November 2021 along the Glenaboy River, a tributary of the Bride River in Co Cork, officers from IFI found heavy deposits of silt, vehicle tracks in the river bed and a lack of adequate silt control in an area where Oliver Kelly Timber Harvesting Ltd had been carrying out thinning operations on behalf of Coillte.

As a result, IFI estimated that significant damage had been done to spawning beds and that a valuable stretch of the river had been lost to spawning wild Atlantic salmon and sea trout that year.

Sitting before Judge Colm Roberts at Mallow District Court on Monday 28 November, Coillte pleaded guilty to a breach of Section 171 (1) of the Fisheries (Consolidation) Act 1959.

Also before the court on that date was Oliver Kelly Timber Harvesting Ltd, which Judge Roberts believed were the main instigators of the silt discharge to the Glenaboy River.

Judge Roberts afforded Coillte the benefit of the Probation of Offenders Act and ordered a payment of €2,000 to Tallow TidyTowns Committee.

Oliver Kelly Timber Harvesting Ltd were also found guilty of a breach of Section 171 as well as Section 173 of the 1959 Act and Section 3 of the Local Government (Water Pollution) (Amendment) Act 1977. The company was also given the benefit of the Probation Act and ordered to pay €2,000 to the Tallow Anglers Association, €1,500 to the Tallow TidyTowns Committee and post a bond of €1,500 for a period of two years under Section 1-1(2) of the Probation Act.

The court heard evidence that IFI officers, including senior fisheries environmental officer Andrew Gillespie, visited the location between Sunday 20 and Tuesday 22 November following reports of pollution.

There was evidence of silt in the river over a five-kilometre stretch downstream of the thinning operation’s location. Gillespie highlighted that the time of the occurrence, in November, was particularly relevant as it was the critical spawning period and that the effect of the silt discharge would be to smother any eggs deposited in the spawning gravels.

Speaking in court, Judge Roberts remarked that Coillte “didn’t properly supervise” the thinning operations and that their contractor “didn’t supervise properly as he was overstretched,” before observing that “when State agencies fail in their obligations, we are in big trouble”.

Sean Long, director of the South Western River Basin District at IFI welcomed the decision, noting that neither Coillte nor their contractor had been before the courts before and had cooperated fully with IFI to implement immediate mitigation measures at the site.

Speaking after verdict was delivered, Long said: “Located in the Munster Blackwater Special Area of Conservation, the Glenaboy River is a very important spawning ground for returning wild Atlantic salmon and sea trout, which are very vulnerable species protected by conservation measures and legislation.

“Sadly, the damage that was done to these spawning beds through pollution was significant, meaning that a valuable stretch of this river had been lost for spawning salmon and sea trout last year.”

Published in Angling

Salmon and sea trout licences for 2023 are now available for immediately purchase through the Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI) online shop.

Hard-copy licences will be available from distributors around the country over the coming weeks, adds the State body for the protection, management and conservation of Ireland’s inland fisheries and sea angling resources.

There are no price increases for salmon and sea trout angling/rod licences for 2023 and there are seven different types of licence available:

  • The A: Annual Licence (€100) entitles you to fish for salmon and sea trout in all fishery districts during the 2023 season.
  • The B: District Licence (€64) allows you to fish for salmon and sea trout in one fishery district only for the 2023 season.
  • The P: Juvenile Licence (€10) is for anglers up to and including 17 years of age. This licence entitles you to fish for salmon and sea trout in all fishery districts for the 2023 season.
  • The R: 21-Day Licence (€50) is an all-districts licence which entitles you to fish for salmon and sea trout on 21 consecutive days in 2023 season.
  • The S: 1-Day Licence (€36) is a single day, all-districts licence and entitles you to fish for salmon and sea trout.
  • The W: Foyle Area Extension Licence (€84) entitles you to fish for salmon and sea trout in the Republic of Ireland in all fishery districts. However, to acquire one from IFI, an angler must have acquired a valid ‘Adult Game Season’ licence or ‘Adult Game Endorsement’ licence from the Loughs Agency.
  • The X: Special Local Licence (€26) is required to fish for sea trout in the Erne Estuary.

Prices for angling/rod licences in Ireland are approved by the Minister for the Environment, Climate and Communications and the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform on foot of a recommendation by the board of IFI. These are the prices that will be applied by IFI for all angling/rod licences purchased for the 2023 season.

Half of the revenue generated from licence fees goes directly into the Habitat and Conservation Fund to help fund salmon and sea trout habitat improvement, fisheries conservation, and protection activities in Ireland.

Since 2016, more than €6 million in grants have been awarded to over 280 projects throughout the country under various funding schemes operated by IFI.

To buy your 2023 salmon and sea trout licence now, visit the Inland Fisheries Ireland online shop.

Published in Angling

Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI) has launched a funding call of up to €1 million to support vital conservation projects around the country through the Salmon and Sea Trout Rehabilitation, Conservation and Protection Fund.

Since 2016, more than €6 million in grants have been awarded to over 280 projects throughout the country under various funding schemes operated by IFI.

From now until Friday 16 December, eligible angling clubs, fishery owners and other stakeholders are invited to express their interest in applying for funding to support fisheries conservation through IFI’s Habitats and Conservation Scheme.

Priority will be given to projects that focus on habitat rehabilitation and conservation, such as rehabilitating damaged river habitats, improving water quality and helping fish overcome physical barriers like weirs.

In similar schemes in 2022, a total of €1,123,000 in funding was approved for 35 habitats and conservation projects based in Cavan, Cork, Donegal, Dublin, Galway, Leitrim, Limerick, Louth, Mayo, Meath, Monaghan, Wexford, Westmeath and Wicklow.

A rock ramp fish pass on the Burren River at Ballinacarrig, Co Carlow | Credit: IFIA rock ramp fish pass on the Burren River at Ballinacarrig, Co Carlow | Credit: IFI

Suzanne Campion, head of business development at IFI said that the scheme’s focus is on protecting and conserving fish species and their habitats for future generations.

“Since 2016, projects under the Habitats and Conservation Fund have delivered approximately 29km of in-stream maintenance works and 37 kilometres of habitat restoration works. As well as that, 83km of spawning and nursery habitats have been made more accessible to migratory fish species, through five fish passage projects,” she said.

“Under the Habitats and Conservation Scheme, which is made possible through fishing licence and permit income, groups can now apply for grants to fund projects and measures in 2023 to continue this vital environmental work.”

In addition to the €1 million in funding available through the Salmon and Sea Trout Rehabilitation, Conservation and Protection Fund, up to €50,000 is available through the Midlands Fisheries Fund.

An information guide about the funding call is available to download. As part of the two-step process, all applicants must firstly complete an ‘Expression of Interest’ application on Inland Fisheries Ireland’s online grant management portal before 5.30pm on Friday 16 December.

After expressions of interest have been completed, full applications that align to fund objectives can be submitted via the online grant management portal until 5.30pm on Friday 27 January 2023. Decisions on applications and grants will be announced by IFI in May 2023.

Published in Angling
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