Henry Gilbey
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Henry Gilbey blog

Urgent - head out of the sand time, send another simple email, and try to protect being able to go bass fishing

As per the other day, this blog post if lifted directly from the excellent BASS blog. Please, please read this and then send the email - all the info you need is right here including email addresses and even some text that you can copy and paste as your actual email. There is a chance that our recreational sport fishery for bass could be shut down for the first six months, and whilst I am right behind doing all we can to get a better future for bass stocks, firstly I can’t see any problems with demanding (enforcing?) that anglers practise catch and release for six months, and secondly, “commercial vessels will be able to land and sell bass up to 1% of their entire catch, which for large vessels could mean very significant amounts of bass.” How on earth is that meant to work? Some other beings somewhere out there are surely looking down on us and wondering how on earth we can be making such a good fist at cocking this wonderful planet up……

Many of you have already sent bass emails to the EU Fisheries Ministers and officials in the last month – well, we need you do it again and this time it is super-urgent since we need to get our voices heard before the EU Council of Ministers Fishing Opportunities meeting on 14 and 15 December.

In short, on Friday the EU Commission proposed that Catch & Release bass fishing should be included in the 6-month moratorium and we have to tell them this is not acceptable. Here is a suggested email, but please feel free to say whatever you wish.

Cut and paste the following addresses into the “To” line of your email.

informacionma@magrama.es; Marianne.Huusko-Lamponen@formin.fi; n.registrator@regeringskansliet.se; info@vm.gov.hu; kabinet.schauvliege@vlaanderen.be; adespota@papd.mof.gov.cy; herki.tuus@mfa.ee; Marian.Jurecka@mze.cz; Jan.Vanin@enviro.gov.sk; Minister@agriculture.gov.ie; gabriela.koenig@bmlfuw.gv.at; minister@mzh.government.bg; mpetrou@minagric.gr; christian.zewen@unico.etat.lu; Kristine.Purina@zm.gov.lv; mfvm@mfvm.dk; sekretariatryb@minrol.gov.pl; ured.ministra@mps.hr; inga.vukelic@mps.hr; info@verbraucherlotse.de; minister.mkgp@gov.si; anpa@anpa.ro; relatii.publice@madr.ro; secretariat.vidalies@developpement-durable.gouv.fr; dpma@developpement-durable.gouv.fr; frederic.gueudar-delahaye@developpement-durable.gouv.fr; alain.cadec@europarl.europa.eu; PECH-secretariat@europarl.europa.eu; karmenu.vella@ec.europa.eu; bernhard.friess@ec.europa.eu; phil.hogan@ec.europa.eu; defra.helpline@defra.gsi.gov.uk; roy.smith@defra.gsi.gov.uk; andrew.randall@defra.gsi.gov.uk; Delyth.Dyne@defra.gsi.gov.uk; demauley@parliament.uk; george.eustice.mp@parliament.uk; urp@politicheagricole.it; Info@zuv.lt; info@saveourseabass.org; infofisheries.msdec@gov.mt; indre.sidlauskiene@zuv.lt; h.r.offringa@minez.nl; roderick.galdes@gov.mt; cab-andriukaitis-webpage@ec.europa.eu;

“Dear Fisheries Ministers, Members of the European Parliament Fisheries Committee and Fisheries Officials

I have previously written to you asking that you implement a number of measures, including cutting bass landings to 541 tonnes in 2016 and allocating bass fishing opportunities in accordance with Article 17 of the Common Fisheries, based on environmental and socio-economic criteria.

I am dismayed to hear that the European Commission has just issued amended draft regulations that would stop the most sustainable form of bass fishing: recreational catch & release, in the first half of 2016. This will bankrupt many bass guides and charter boats that rely entirely or substantially on catch & release bass fishing. Additionally, many small coastal villages will be hit by losing valuable associated tourist income: hotels, pubs, restaurants and tackle shops.

Yet at the same time, commercial vessels will be able to land and sell bass up to 1% of their entire catch, which for large vessels could mean very significant amounts of bass. This is simply not equitable.

Please give effect to Article 17 now. Exercise positive discrimination in favour of the most sustainable forms of bass fishing: catch & release; recreational angling; commercial rod & line; and commercial hand lines.

Yours sincerely,

[Insert Name]”

My profound thanks to BASS for their constant efforts on our behalf.

Below are screenshots of the “EAA and EFTTA Response to Commission Proposals for Bass Fishing Opportunities 2016.” More details can be found here.