The Scottish Sea Angling Conservation Network

            A charity registered in Scotland - RegNo:: SC039015


Scotland - no plans to protect tope

In the House of Lords, Lord Taylor of Holbeach (Cons) asked HMG :

With reference to the Tope (Prohibition of Fishing) Order 2008 (SI 2008/691), whether Articles 3, 4 and 5 provide that tope may be caught using a rod and line but may not be landed in England nor transshipped to a fishing boat from another part of the United Kingdom; and whether tope may, in those circumstances, be landed in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.

Lord Rooker (Minister of State (Sustainable Farming, Food and Animal Welfare), Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs) replied -

The Tope (Prohibition of Fishing) Order 2008 prohibits tope caught by rod and line from being landed, alive or dead, in England only. Anglers can continue to practice catch and release. Only tope caught by methods other than rod and line, up to a limit of 45 kg per day liveweight, may be landed. Tope caught by any method may currently be landed in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.

Tope may not be transshipped by UK vessels in English waters and within British fishery limits, excluding Northern Ireland zone, the Scottish zone, Wales or the territorial sea adjacent to the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man.

We understand that the Welsh Assembly Government intend to introduce an equivalent statutory instrument and the Scottish Executive are considering this matter further. The Department of Agriculture and Rural Development in Northern Ireland has no plans to introduce similar measures.

In a discussion with SSACN, a representative of the Scottish Government’s Marine Directorate (SGMD) indicated that Cabinet Secretary Lochhead has no intention of introducing any such statutory instrument. This will be a topic at a meeting with the SGMD next week.

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