Following several successive years of stock decline and a vigorous campaign by recreational angling organisations, the countries of the EU have finally agreed to raise the minimum size at which bass can be harvested by both commercial and recreational fisherman.
As usual the politicians and commercial sector have followed their usual line – spending years denying what every one else recognised, that is that bass stocks were being hammered way beyond sustainable levels !
But of course the commercial sector have managed to create a loophole - there will be no increase in mesh sizes for commercial fisheries supposedly in a bid to address a long standing criticism from the commercial fishing industry that there is too much ‘micro-management’ from Brussels. Following that concession, the commercial fishermen are then expected to change fishing gears voluntarily in order to avoid catching fish below 42cm – well that’s OK then !!!!!! The very people who thrashed the stocks can now be trusted to save them !
The Minimum Conservation Reference Size (MCRS) for bass will increase from 36cm to 42cm across all northern European waters in an effort to protect the stock and allow female bass to spawn. Other parts of the package included a ban on winter pelagic trawling for bass, a three fish per day bag limit for recreational anglers and most recently monthly vessel limits for commercial bass fisheries.
Category: EU Government News