Henry Gilbey
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Henry Gilbey blog

Please sign this petition that asks for restrictions on gill netting for bass - a mere minute of your time?

I will keep banging the conservation drum until there is nothing fishing related left to keep banging on about, and of course that ain’t going to be anytime soon with us being at the top of the food chain on this glorious planet. I am asking for what amounts to less than a minute of your time to please go and sign this online petition here that seeks to raise questions with the government on “the decision to water down the recent European decision on the bass stocks” - gill netting the inshore waters for bass basically. At 10,000 “signatures” the government will respond to the petition.

I would like to quote a few words from an email from the ex-MP Martin Salter, a true fishing junkie and a thoroughly nice bloke as well. These come from an email of his and I have his permission to quote some extracts here: “It is important that we try and focus the anger over the gill netting exemptions into positive action rather than some of the introspective and  recriminatory nonsense that has been flying around on various forums in recent weeks. We have already had a number of parliamentary questions tabled on the issue and Charles Walker MP has agreed to organise a parliamentary debate so the we can hold George Eustice to account for his statements and actions. David Mitchell will be updating our briefing on the bass campaign to counter some of the misinformation that is being circulated  and I will be putting together a couple of articles for publication outlining the case for continued bass conservation measures that are fair, equitable and effective. We are also asking Fish Legal to see if there is any possibility of mounting a legal challenge to the December decisions. Finally, rest assured that we will continue to work positively with our colleagues at BASS, the IFM and David Curtis and the guys at Save Our Sea Bass to press the Commission and our politicians to remove the gill netting exemptions and bring in meaningful bass conservation measures that are sustainable and that will genuinely help to rebuild stocks. As many people have said, despite the four month fixed gill netting  exemption, we have achieved more progress in bass conservation in the last year than we had in the previous 20 years. But there is still one hell of a long way to go!” Thanks Martin.

This is politics. Nothing is ever going to happen overnight, but without a doubt the increased amount of angler pressure is making more and more of a difference. Please get behind these campaigns. It takes so little time and effort and as an angler you owe it to yourself to try and make things better.