Displaying items by tag: Salmon
#ANGLING - The Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI) annual Sponsorship Scheme for 2013 is now open for applications.
Prizes may be sponsored under the scheme, but must be fishing tackle or angling-related in order to support those providing a service to Ireland's estimated 500,000 anglers.
The scheme is open to federations, clubs, individuals, youth groups, commercial salmon sector, etc who in the past have gained sponsorship for competitions, angling lessons, heritage projects and international, national and local events, all of which promote some or all of the following: inland fisheries, recreational angling and conservation.
Minister Fergus O'Dowd welcomed the scheme, saying: “Angling, and Ireland’s wonderful fisheries are there for all to enjoy. IFI, by supporting such activity is empowering individuals and organisations to boost their local economies, teach all ages and abilities to fish, have a hobby for life, and helping protect and sustain our fisheries resource into the future.”
Full details of the scheme are available on the IFI website and the closing date for receipt of applications is 15 January 2013.
Meanwhile, Minister O'Dowd has also announced the opening of the 2012-13 Salmon Conservation Fund Contributors Scheme, which has an initial allocation of €200,000 available for projects which help in the conservation of wild Atlantic salmon.
Applications are invited from clubs, fishery owners, individuals and commercial salmon fishermen who have contributed to the fund by 15 March 2013.
According to IFI, the scheme - which was run on a pilot basis for the previous two years - has been a success to date, with projects from all over Ireland awarded funding.
Applicants work with IFI to agree projects and many have been successful in securing additional LEADER funding.
The minister commented: “I never cease to be impressed by the work enthusiastic, passionate anglers and individuals can get done, ensuring that our natural resource is conserved and protected for future generations.
"The long term effect will ensure biodiversity and improved stocks of salmon from which Ireland can derive economic benefit through recreational angling, and commercial exploitation in years to come.”
Details of the scheme can be downloaded from the IFI website HERE.
Financiers around the world have expressed interest in the 500-hectare organic salmon farm to be located off Inis Oirr in the Aran Islands, though BIM said it was not at liberty to disclose who they are.
As previously reported on Afloat.ie, the proposed fish farm would be the largest of its kind in Europe, set to double the State's production of organic salmon.
BIM says it is already receiving inquiries for jobs from emigrants wishing to return home.
IFI recently issued a statement regarding its submission on the project's Environmental Impact Statement, raising concerns about the scale of the development and the impact of sea lice - infestations of which are often concentrated by aquaculture.
The public consultation that began in mid-October is scheduled to conclude next Wednesday 12 December.
As previously reported on Afloat.ie, the 15,000-tonne deep-sea organic salmon farm would be located on a 500-hectare site in Galway Bay off Inis Oírr, and would be one of the largest of its kind in Europe, projected to be worth €103 million annually for the economy.
The statutory consultation period ended earlier this month after delays over the summer in publishing the licence application. And from next Monday 15 October, Bord Iascaigh Mhara (BIM) will make the plan and all statutory feedback available to the public via its website at www.bim.ie.
Advertisements announcing the consultation will appear in local and national newspapers, and packs will also be available to view for locals at Kilronan and Salthill Garda stations, including copies of the environmental impact statements and information on the statutory consultation process.
BIM aquaculture development manager Donal Maguire told Galway Bay FM that transparency is key to ensuring the public had all the information they need regarding the scheme - which has faced opposition from local anglers who fear the fish farm could have a negative impact on wild salmon numbers.
As the Belfast Telegraph reports, the Ulster Angling Federation (UAF) has lodged an objection to the application for protected geographical indication (PGI) status, of the kind that protects the names of foods and drinks like Champagne and Parmesan cheese.
NI anglers argue that the term 'Irish salmon' has been seized by the aquaculture industry "to create the illusion that consumers are receiving a wild Irish product".
UAF chair Jim Haughey suggests that the name be amended to 'Farmed Salmon from Ireland'.
#SALMON THREAT - Just three out of every 100 wild salmon returned to Northern Ireland's rivers last year - prompting concerns that the species has declined past the point of no return, as the Belfast Telegraph reports.
Following a recent meeting of the Stormont culture, arts and leisure committee where the issue was discussed, South Belfast MLA Michael McGimpsey shared his belief "that the public do not appreciate just how precarious the situation is.
"It is estimated that 1,000 to 1,500 salmon return to Northern Ireland each year to spawn. Of these, half are wild salmon and the other half locally hatched salmon.”
McGimpsey said it is "beyond question that there has been a serious collapse in local wild salmon numbers and this is a situation which has implications, not just for local anglers but for our tourist industry."
Claiming that NI's wild salmon stocks are now "around dodo levels", he demanded "totally drastic action in and around salmon" to ensure the species' future.
Earlier this year, as previously reported on Afloat.ie, Northern Ireland's Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure (DCAL) has called for a voluntary ban on offshore salmon fishing.
The move to stop issuing licences for commercial salmon nets that may "contravene European law" off Antrim's north coast was welcomed by river angling campaigners NoSalmonNets, who have been using social media to promote their cause.
Meanwhile, DCAL insists that any court action from salmon netters who may challenge the ban "should not prove an obstacle" to extending the salmon stock preserving measures. Proposals will be put to the minister by the end of this month with a view to enacting legislation next year.
The Belfast Telegraph has more on the story HERE.
#ANGLING - Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI) has successfully won two court cases for illegal salmon fishing on the River Boyne in 2011.
In the first case Arunas Butkus of Navan, Co Meath was fined €3,000 for illegal salmon angling and ordered to pay total costs of €1,395 to IFI in Navan District Court on 25 July last.
On 15 November 2011, Butkus was found to be fishing during the annual close season for salmon on the River Boyne. Fisheries officers Fionnuala McCabe, Val Woods and Kevin O’Brien from the Drogheda District apprehended him, whereupon an incorrect address was provided.
Butkus was not represented in court. Judge McMahon convicted him under Section 137 of the 1959 Fisheries Act for fishing out of season and under Section 301 for refusing to give his name and address when lawfully demanded. He was fined €3,000, given six months to pay and ordered to pay total costs of €1,395 to IFI.
In the second case, Anthony McDonagh was fined €150 for fishing without a salmon licence and ordered to pay total costs of €1,650 to IFI in Drogheda District Court on 12 July last.
On 22 September 2011, McDonagh was found to be fishing without a salmon licence on the River Boyne. He was apprehended by Assistant Inspector Kevin O’Brien and Fisheries Officer Val Woods whereupon he gave a false name and address.
McDonagh pleaded guilty and Judge Flann Brennan convicted him under Section 303 of the 1959 Fisheries Act for failing to produce a licence on demand and under Section 301 for refusing to give his name and address when lawfully demanded. He was fined €150 for fishing without a rod and line and ordered to pay total costs of €1,650 to IFI in Drogheda District Court.
According to IFI, the River Boyne was was once one of the most prolific waterways for salmon on the east coast. In the 1980s approximately 10,000 salmon ran the systemm, but this declined to an all-time low in 2006 when fewer than 1,000 were caught on the river.
In 2006 IFI introduced a series of conservation measures in order to combat the decline in salmon numbers. The interceptory mixed stock fishery for salmon ceased throughout Ireland and netsmen who availed of the Hardship Scheme were duly compensated for their loss of the salmon fishery.
Consequently all the rivers on the east coast with the exception of the River Fane were closed for salmon fishing. The River Boyne is open for catch and release only and in 2011 a total of 824 salmon were caught and released on the river.
IFI said it hopes these measures will preserve our stock of Atlantic salmon, which are "not only a valuable resource for our economy, but also an important part of our natural heritage as salmon and trout have been running our rivers since the last ice age".
Anglers and the general public are also urged to be vigilant and report any incidences of illegal fishing via the IFI's special freefone number at 1890 34 74 24, or for easier recall 1890 FISH 24.
#salmon – The future of salmon farming in South Connemara got a considerable boost today following the the assignment of aquaculture licences from five separate operators to Bradán Beo Teoranta, a company established by Údarás na Gaeltachta to consolidate and revitalise the operation of sustainable salmon farming in the area.
The Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Simon Coveney TD, approved the assignments. The assignment of the licences took place with the agreement of the former licence holders and follows a lengthy examination of all issues associated with salmon farming in South Connemara by the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Údarás na Gaeltachta and the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht.
Commenting on the assignment Minister Coveney said "This assignment of licences will consolidate operations in one licence holder and thereby greatly assist in the sustainable development of salmon farming in the area while also ensuring the maximum ongoing protection of the environment. The initiative provides a good example of Government Departments and State Agencies working together to secure a solid future for employment in the aquaculture industry".
The aquaculture licences assigned to Bradán Beo Teo were formerly held by the following companies: DMCI Golam Teo.,
Muirachmhainni Teo., Eisc Ui Fhlathartha Teo., Eisc Iathglas Teo, Muir Gheal Teo.
#INLAND WATERWAYS - Staff at Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI) staff are continuing their investigation of fish mortalities on a 9km stretch of the River Vartry in Wicklow
Both adult and juvenile salmon were found dead over the stretch of the Vartry from Roundwood downstream of the reservoir to Ashford, following a complaint received by the IFI last Thursday 28 June.
During the investigation IFI staff also noted the presence of live fish along the affected stretch.
Precise numbers of dead fish have not yet been confirmed due to the high water levels and recent heavy rains.
#ANGLING - Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI) has been successful in a circuit court case against a Louth man who appealed a district court decision over illegal salmon fishing.
Pat Smith of Annagassan, who was appealing the severity of the sentence handed down by the District Court in April last year, was ordered to pay two fines totalling €600 and costs of €2,369 to IFI in a hearing at Dundalk Circuit Court on Friday 11 May.
Smith was found to be illegally fishing in September 2010 after fisheries officers from the Dundalk district apprehended him with a fixed net at the shores of Annagassan, the tidal section of the Dee and Glyde rivers.
Court proceedings were initiated and on 14 April 2011 Smith was convicted and fined €600 and ordered to pay total costs of €880 to Inland Fisheries Ireland.
Smith appealed this case on two counts: first on the townland where the incident took place, and secondly on the severity of the sentence. The first count was dropped by the defendant just before proceedings began in the circuit court.
On the second count witness Assistant Inspector Ronan O’Brien gave evidence of events of the day in question and outlined that all rivers on the East Coast, with the exception of the River Fane, were closed for salmon fishing due to declining salmon stocks.
Judge Terry O’Sullivan stated that the offence committed was serious and had to be treated as such because salmon stocks were in decline around the country and were an important part of our heritage. He ordered Smith to pay both fines totalling €600 within six months by default or face six months imprisonment. The judge also ordered him to pay total costs of €2,369 to IFI with six months to pay.
Since 2006 IFI has engaged in conservation measures to combat the decline in salmon numbers. This resulted in an end to the interceptory mixed stock fishery for salmon throughout Ireland, and affected newsmen who availed of the Hardship Scheme were compensated for their loss.
As previously reported on Afloat.ie, the IFI Salmon Conservation Scheme has been extended through this year, with funding increased to a total of €200,000.
The pilot scheme will facilitate the rehabilitation of salmon stocks, giving priority to rivers below their conservation limit which have the greatest prospect of recovery.
According to IFI: "At the peak of salmon production in the 1970s, approximately 3,000 salmon were caught commercially in Dundalk waters. This declined to an all time low in 2006 when only 225 were caught in the entire Dundalk bay area. Annagassan would have been a traditional location for poaching salmon and sea trout in the past.
"Consequently all the rivers on the East coast, with the exception of the River Fane, were closed for salmon fishing. Only this year are the Castletown, Glyde and Dee rivers open for catch-and-release only."
The fisheries body added: "It is hoped that these measures will preserve our stock of Atlantic salmon, which are not only a valuable resource for our economy, but also an important part of our natural heritage as salmon and trout have been running our rivers since the last ice age."
Members of the public can report incidents of poaching and pollution to the IFI at freephone 1890 34 74 24 or for easier recall 1890 FISH 24.
The Enniscorthy Local Anglers Association has also agreed with IFI officials not to overfish the river when levels are low.
New signage has now been installed along the river through the town reminding salmon anglers that no more than 15 rods will be allowed at any one time when the water is running low.
All fish must also be returned to the Slaney as per the agreement.
As previously reported on Afloat.ie, the Wexford town's anglers had secured the support of the IFI board in their call to prevent the threatened ban on using shrimp as bait.
Members of the Enniscorthy Local Anglers group argued that shrimp is ideal bait for catching salmon downstream, and said they were "baffled" by the ban on its use by IFI officials.
Pickings have been slim so far this season, with only one fish caught since it began a month ago. But local angler Kris Murphy is "generally optimistic" about the river's salmon stocks.
The Enniscorthy Guardian has more on the story HERE.