Menu

Ireland's sailing, boating & maritime magazine

In association with ISA Logo Irish Sailing

Pike Fishing Bodies Welcome High Court Annulment of Bye-Law

26th February 2019
1515 Views
Paul Byrne, Secretary of the Irish Pike Society Paul Byrne, Secretary of the Irish Pike Society

The Irish Pike Society (IPS) and the Irish Federation of Pike Angling Clubs (IFPAC) have welcomed the annulment by the High Court on Monday 25th February of ‘The Designated Salmonid Waters Bye-Law’, which has provided for the killing of four pike of any size per angler per day on a number of Irish waterways. The bye-law also designated such waters to be managed primarily for the benefit of salmonid species of fish.

The ruling of the High Court was in response to a challenge from the Irish Pike Society and Irish Federation of Pike Angling Clubs to the bye-law under Section 57 of the Inland Fisheries Act of 2010. The decision will be welcomed by national angling bodies, tourism organisations, and local businesses.

It was apparent from the outset that the bye-law, which allowed for the ecologically devastating depletion of Ireland’s previously statutorily protected pike population, was based on uninformed views and that there was no scientific basis for the provisions contained in it. Recent research carried out by Inland Fisheries Ireland, the statutory body for the management of Ireland’s inland fisheries, found that pike feed primarily on species other than salmonid fish.

The available scientific evidence also showed that the bye-law would in fact be hugely detrimental to salmonid stocks. A detailed report from Dr Bruno Broughton, an internationally renowned Fisheries Management Consultant, severely criticised the bye-law on a number of grounds.

Despite the defeat of the bye-law, the arguments for it, which promote the daily killing of thousands of pike in over 30% of Irish waterways, are still used to justify pike culling practices. The practice of ‘gill-netting’ is still used by Inland Fisheries Ireland to reduce pike levels. This involves thousands of meters of net being strung across shallow bays to capture and kill pike as they travel to their spawning beds.

Ian Forde, Chairman of the Irish Pike Society said: “We welcome the decision of the High Court, which is the result of a massive effort from federations, clubs and individual anglers who raised funds to mount a challenge to the bye-law by way of a statutory appeal. This is a good decision for anglers in Ireland – not only pike anglers, but also trout anglers, and the visiting tourists who spend close to €800 million every year in our economy.

However, the continued culling of pike populations is still permitted, despite a lack of current scientific research to support any argument for it. Pike anglers in Ireland implore the Government to suspend pike culling measures such as gill-netting and face the real problems concerning inland fisheries head on”.

Published in Angling
Afloat.ie Team

About The Author

Afloat.ie Team

Email The Author

Afloat.ie is Ireland's dedicated marine journalism team.

Have you got a story for our reporters? Email us here.

We've got a favour to ask

More people are reading Afloat.ie than ever thanks to the power of the internet but we're in stormy seas because advertising revenues across the media are falling fast. Unlike many news sites, we haven’t put up a paywall because we want to keep our marine journalism open.

Afloat.ie is Ireland's only full–time marine journalism team and it takes time, money and hard work to produce our content.

So you can see why we need to ask for your help.

If everyone chipped in, we can enhance our coverage and our future would be more secure. You can help us through a small donation. Thank you.

Direct Donation to Afloat button

Featured Sailing School

INSS sidebutton

Featured Clubs

DBSC
Howth Yacht Club
Kinsale Yacht Club
National Yacht Club
Royal Cork Yacht Club
Royal Irish Yacht club
Royal Saint George Yacht Club

Featured Brokers

mgm sidebutton
bjmarine sidebutton
xyachts sidebutton

Featured Associations

ISA sidebutton
ICRA
isora sidebutton

Featured Events

tokyo sidebutton
sovscup sidebutton
vdlr sidebutton

Featured Chandleries

CHMarine Afloat logo
viking sidebutton

Featured Sailmakers

northsails sidebutton
uksails sidebutton

Featured Marinas

dlmarina sidebutton

Featured Blogs

W M Nixon - Sailing on Saturday
podcast sidebutton
BSB sidebutton
sellingboat sidebutton

Please show your support for Afloat by donating