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Inland Fisheries Ireland has launched its Sponsorship Fund for 2017 which will support angling events and initiatives across the country. The fund supported 44 events to the tune of €30,000 in 2016 with a particular focus on initiatives which help grow Ireland’s angling tourism product and support novice anglers. Angling in Ireland is currently worth €836 million to Ireland’s economy annually, supporting upwards of 11,000 jobs.

Inland Fisheries Ireland’s Sponsorship Fund aims to support large international competitions held in Ireland which showcase Ireland’s angling offering and contribute to local economies. The fund also contributes to novice angler events which increase participation in angling among those who have recently taken up fishing. Finally, it also helps initiatives which disseminate information which promote conservation and protection of the inland fisheries and sea angling resource and can include seminars, workshops and training. Support from the Sponsorship Fund can be either financial or resource support from Inland Fisheries Ireland staff members.

Angling offers rural communities the opportunity to increase the number of visitors to the area and in turn, support local business and create jobs by providing a sustainable source of income for both catering and accommodation services. Inland Fisheries Ireland’s National Strategy for Angling Development aims to increase overseas angling visits from 163,000 in 2015 to 173,000 and increase domestic participation of 273,000 anglers annually by 0.5%. If this is realised, angling could bring in an additional €53 million annually and support 1,800 jobs.

Suzanne Campion, Head of Business Development at Inland Fisheries Ireland said: “We are delighted to launch our Sponsorship Fund for 2017 which will support angling clubs and groups nationwide in delivering programmes which ultimately drive angling participation rates. There is a huge network of angling communities nationwide and we want to support them in offering local events which engage domestic anglers, overseas anglers and those who are about to cast for the first time.

Ireland has some of the best wild fisheries in Europe and as a destination, we have a unique opportunity to grow our angling tourism product. This Sponsorship Fund is just one element of our National Strategy for Angling Development which aims to develop our angling tourism potential while also managing and conserving our fisheries resource.”

Inland Fisheries Ireland’s National Strategy for Angling Development is the first comprehensive national framework which will deliver a wide-ranging set of investments, innovations and promotions over the coming five years. It aims to make angling accessible and attractive through information, infrastructure and support, to develop tourism through the promotion of the angling resource and to position angling as a key leisure and recreation pursuit. The Strategy will deliver significant economic benefits in rural communities where much of angling takes place, while also ensuring that fish populations and habitats are protected and conserved.

Applications for funding from the Sponsorship Fund are now invited from angling clubs, associations or any local group organising an angling initiative. The scheme will remain open for applications until Friday, 9th of December 2016 and all applications can be made online at www.fisheriesireland.ie/funding. Awards will be subject to budget availability and adherence to the scheme requirements.

Published in Angling
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#Angling - Inland Fisheries Ireland has launched a public consultation on the management of pike in designated wild brown trout fisheries.

It follows the IFI board’s decision to commence a review period of its policies on the management of wild brown trout, pike and bass that were initially developed in 2014.

IFI says it welcomes the opportunity to engage with stakeholders and their “diverse opinions” on the issue via their submissions, which will be reviewed and considered by the newly appointed Pike and Wild Brown Trout Policy Review Group that comprises a range of representatives from all disciplines within the fisheries agency.

“Over two years ago, we developed policies which have an impact on how we manage the pike species in fisheries which are predominately home to wild brown trout,” said IFI chief executive Dr Ciaran Byrne. “This review and public consultation period allows us to reflect on those policies and to hear from our stakeholders on their views on this issue.

“We know there are varied opinions out there and this is the chance for the public to have their say. This public consultation will help inform our future policies and work in this area.”

Information on the consultation is available from the IFI website or from any IFI office. The public consultation period will run for four weeks until 5pm on Thursday 1 December.

All submissions must be made in writing and will be published on the website. Submissions should be marked ‘Public Consultation – Pike Management in Brown Trout Fisheries’ and can be submitted by email to [email protected] or by post to:

Policy Review
Inland Fisheries Ireland
Sunnyside House
Macroom, Co Cork

Published in Angling

#Angling - Poaching is a direct threat to efforts to revive salmon and trout angling and associated tourism in Connemara, a local business has warned.

Brian Curran of Lough Corrib-based Ireland West Angling told the Connacht Tribune that poachers are doing “untold damage to rehabilitation efforts” in Spiddal and environs, following a recent conviction of a local man for unlawful netting on the Boluisce River.

Such illegal practices disturb the painstaking work of Inland Fisheries Ireland staff and local registered fisheries to clear obstructions and place spawning gravel to aid fish in their migration.

The story comes weeks after Northern Irish anglers expressed their own concerns over poaching and pollution in the Carlingford and Lough Foyle areas, as previously reported on Afloat.ie.

Published in Angling

#Angling - Northern Ireland’s new online fishing permit application system has “transformed” the industry, as the Belfast Telegraph reports.

The new NI government web portal, designed by Belfast firm Kainos with BT, enables anglers and commercial fishermen to apply for a range of permits and licences with the Inland Fisheries Group via a single channel.

Underpinning the service is a “shared management information system” that means less paperwork and increased efficiency for users and local permit providers alike.

Earlier this year, all paper-based angling permits in Northern Ireland were replaced by electronic records, as previously reported on Afloat.ie.

Published in Angling

#Angling - A new fund to support projects for sustainable and accessible angling in Ireland has been launched by Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI).

The Capital Works Fund of €500,000 is available for angling groups and clubs who are looking to improve access and infrastructure for angling.

The fund is aimed specifically at capital improvement works, with grants available to all groups and individuals including local development associations, tidy towns, angling clubs and others looking to improve access to angling.

The types of projects eligible for funding must provide for public access and include the following:

  • Clearing and fencing along rivers/ lakes to allow access for angling.
  • Disability-friendly angling stands.
  • Car parks to improve access for anglers (new car parks and upgrades to existing carparks).
  • Walkways to improve access for anglers.
  • Stands, styles, footbridges and boat slips.
  • Accessible angling boats.

Sean Kyne TD, Minister of State with responsibility for the inland fisheries sector, said: “Accessibility for people of all abilities is a priority if our inland fisheries are to be enjoyed by everyone.

“I welcome the investment which will open angling activity to a wider range of participants and I would encourage the community based groups to apply for funding.”

The funding scheme forms part of IFI’s National Strategy for Angling Development which aims to ensure that Ireland’s fish stocks and angling infrastructure are protected and enhanced for the economic value and recreational benefit which they offer to communities across Ireland.

The fisheries resource is worth €836 million to the Irish economy annually and supports upwards of 11,000 jobs, often in rural and peripheral communities.

IFI head of business development Suzanne Campion added: “We are now inviting applications for funding for ‘shovel-ready’ projects which will improve access to angling.

“This is a vital step in developing facilities for the 273,600 anglers currently in Ireland and the 163,000 international visitors who fished here in 2015. By improving access, we can help grow domestic participation in angling and encourage more visitors to our country every year.”

Campion said the National Strategy for Angling Development “aims to grow the annual economic contribution of angling by €96 million over the next five years, creating an additional 1,800 jobs and attracting 40,000 more tourists annually.

“We are calling on angling development groups to apply for funding through this scheme. Together, we can ensure our angling infrastructure is developed and we can help remove any barriers to participating in this valuable activity.”

Applications for funding should be submitted via the online application form.

Applications will be evaluated in light of the objectives of IFI’s National Strategy for Angling Development, which aims to make angling accessible and attractive through information, infrastructure and support, to develop tourism through the promotion of angling and to establish recognition of angling as an important leisure and recreational pursuit. The closing date for applications is Tuesday 8 November.

IFI said it expects to continue funding in this area in 2017, and invites expressions of interest (open till the end of November 2016) from those wishing to develop more complex projects to deliver on the National Strategy for Angling Development.

Published in Angling

#Angling - Galway anglers are mounting a protest against proposals to ban fishing in public spaces around the city, as the Connacht Tribune reports.

Both the Galway Bay Sea Angling Club and Galway City Salmon Angling Association have written separately to Galway City Council expressing their opposition to a draft bye-law that would prohibit angling “in any part of a park or open space” without prior written permission.

This would include areas popular with anglers such as Ballyloughane, Silverstrand and Blackrock, as well as the ‘high bank’ between the Salmon Weir and O’Brien’s Bridge in the city centre.

Anglers argue that any such ban on fishing in Galway would be costly to the economy that hinges on the sport, from tourism to the city’s tackle shops.

The Connacht Tribune has more on the story HERE.

Published in Angling
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#RNLI - Youghal RNLI’s volunteer lifeboat crew were tasked yesterday morning (Saturday 15 October) in choppy waters to reports of a man taken ill on board a chartered angling vessel.

At 11.30am the lifeboat launched to the location around a mile and a half off Capel Island, where the casualty had been unconscious for a period and was pale in appearance.

The lifeboat crew proceeded to administer casualty care when they recovered the casualty on board.

An ambulance was also requested and was awaiting the lifeboat on its return to station, where the paramedics checked the casualty over before giving him the all clear.

Commenting on the callout, Youghal RNLI lifeboat Helm John Griffin said: “[The charter vessel operators] did the right thing in contacting us when the man became unwell.

“It’s always better to get an ill person medically checked out if there are any concerns.”

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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#FishKill - The fish kill on the Annsborough River in Co Down last weekend was caused by a chemical leak from a cracked pipe, accoridng to BBC News.

And NI Water has offered to restock the salmon and sea trout stream, one popular with local angling enthusiasts, days after the incident at its water treatment plant in the area.

As previously reported on Afloat.ie, some 1,600 fish were killed when the river was polluted by what’s since been confirmed as a polyelectrolyte used in processing water treatment byproducts.

"The severity of this incident is very unusual for our company. We truly regret the outcome and the number of fish that have been killed,” said NI Water in a statement.

BBC News has more on the story HERE.

Published in Angling

#SomethingFishy - Pupils at Scoil Chroí Naofa in Bunninadden, Sligo have been named the national winners of Inland Fisheries Ireland’s Something Fishy competition for 2016 at an event in Sligo’s Clarion Hotel yesterday (Wednesday 12 October).

The winning group of 24 children from the school’s senior class take home the National Something Fishy Award and €700 for their animated short on the life cycle of the salmon – selected by an independent judging panel comprising fisheries officers and education staff.

Along with their teacher Adrian Ormsby, the class edited and produced the digital and artistic photo story during the previous school term.



The ‘Something Fishy’ programme is an educational initiative of Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI) in partnership with Blackrock Education Centre, which allows students to learn about fish and the environment in a local context.

The 2016 programme saw 3,776 children taking part in 118 schools and 11 education centres nationwide. Students were invited to submit project entries into the competition with this year’s entries addressing the theme ‘Focus on Learning’.

“The standard of entry to this year’s Something Fishy competition was particularly high and it is fantastic to have so many children engaged on our fisheries resource,” said IFI chief executive Dr Ciaran Byrne.

“Something Fishy gives children an opportunity to learn valuable lessons about the importance of protecting and conserving the aquatic environment but perhaps more importantly, they are also empowered to share their learnings with their peers via digital projects which can be enjoyed by all.”

Bernie Burke, principal of Scoil Chroí Naofa, described the win as “a fantastic achievement by the students involved who have thoroughly enjoyed taking part in the programme.

“They have discovered the magical world within our waterways and enjoyed learning all about the aquatic environment. I would like to congratulate each of them and their teacher Mr Ormsby on all their hard work.”

Since the inception of Something Fishy in 2005, some 50,000 children have participated in the initiative which aims to promote interest and understanding in fish and their habitats.

As part of the educational programme, IFI fisheries officers visit schools and provide classroom-based assistance, with a full range of resources for teachers and children also available on the Something Fishy website.

Together, they explore the themes of fish, habitats, angling, water environment and the protection and conservation of Ireland’s rivers and lakes.

Aside from school-based learning, fisheries officers take students into the field to give them some practical experience of their work.

Published in Marine Wildlife

#FishKill - Accidental discharge from a water treatment works is to blame for a major fish kill incident on a Co Down river at the weekend, as the Belfast Telegraph reports.

Angling enthusiasts have expressed dismay over the deaths of more than 1,600 fish on a tributary of the Annsborough River that flows into Dundrum Bay near Newcastle, after making the grim discovery on Saturday 8 October.

The Northern Ireland Environment Agency is currently investigating the incident, which NI Water has admitted was caused by an accidental discharge of chemicals into a river known locally for salmon and sea trout.

The Belfast Telegraph has more on the story HERE.

Earlier today Afloat.ie reported on concerns among Northern Irish anglers over spikes in pollution and poaching on the country’s waterways.

Published in Angling
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Page 7 of 44

The Half Ton Class was created by the Offshore Racing Council for boats within the racing band not exceeding 22'-0". The ORC decided that the rule should "....permit the development of seaworthy offshore racing yachts...The Council will endeavour to protect the majority of the existing IOR fleet from rapid obsolescence caused by ....developments which produce increased performance without corresponding changes in ratings..."

When first introduced the IOR rule was perfectly adequate for rating boats in existence at that time. However yacht designers naturally examined the rule to seize upon any advantage they could find, the most noticeable of which has been a reduction in displacement and a return to fractional rigs.

After 1993, when the IOR Mk.III rule reached it termination due to lack of people building new boats, the rule was replaced by the CHS (Channel) Handicap system which in turn developed into the IRC system now used.

The IRC handicap system operates by a secret formula which tries to develop boats which are 'Cruising type' of relatively heavy boats with good internal accommodation. It tends to penalise boats with excessive stability or excessive sail area.

Competitions

The most significant events for the Half Ton Class has been the annual Half Ton Cup which was sailed under the IOR rules until 1993. More recently this has been replaced with the Half Ton Classics Cup. The venue of the event moved from continent to continent with over-representation on French or British ports. In later years the event is held biennially. Initially, it was proposed to hold events in Ireland, Britain and France by rotation. However, it was the Belgians who took the ball and ran with it. The Class is now managed from Belgium. 

At A Glance – Half Ton Classics Cup Winners

  • 2017 – Kinsale – Swuzzlebubble – Phil Plumtree – Farr 1977
  • 2016 – Falmouth – Swuzzlebubble – Greg Peck – Farr 1977
  • 2015 – Nieuwport – Checkmate XV – David Cullen – Humphreys 1985
  • 2014 – St Quay Portrieux – Swuzzlebubble – Peter Morton – Farr 1977
  • 2013 – Boulogne – Checkmate XV – Nigel Biggs – Humphreys 1985
  • 2011 – Cowes – Chimp – Michael Kershaw – Berret 1978
  • 2009 – Nieuwpoort – Général Tapioca – Philippe Pilate – Berret 1978
  • 2007 – Dun Laoghaire – Henri-Lloyd Harmony – Nigel Biggs – Humphreys 1980~
  • 2005 – Dinard – Gingko – Patrick Lobrichon – Mauric 1968
  • 2003 – Nieuwpoort – Général Tapioca – Philippe Pilate – Berret 1978

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