IOM MPA to stop mobile gears and all taking of scallop

iomPhil Gawne MHK, Minister for DEFA, has confirmed the designation of Baie ny Carrickey as the latest in a network of Isle of Man Marine Protected Areas (MPA).  It is the 6th area to be designated as a MPA in Manx waters. 

The area will be closed to all trawling, dredging and all extraction of scallops to protect 11km2 (1100 hectares) of seabed, including important kelp forests, diverse rocky reef habitat and limestone ledges encrusted in marine life.

According to Mr Gawne : “Following a packed public meeting held in Port St Mary this summer, I created a committee tasked with advising the Department on the potential boundaries for a protected area off Port St Mary.

“I am delighted that this committee, comprising of commercial fishermen, a diver, a charter angler and the Manx Wildlife Trust have been able to recommend an area for permanent protection.

“This closure should be of benefit to all marine stakeholders- scallop fishermen will benefit in the long term from increased spat production and recruitment on adjacent fishing grounds, pot fishermen and charter anglers should see increased returns, and the seabed itself will no longer be affected by mobile fishing gears. The speed at which this designation has been made only serves to underline the progress that the Isle of Man has made in building consensus over the last few years on issues such as this, further demonstrating that commercial fishing and conservation interests can work together successfully to the benefit of all.”

Evidence from Port Erin Closed Area and from studies of Marine Protected Areas around the world has shown how protecting areas of the seabed benefits adjacent fisheries and the marine environment over a much larger area.

The relevant byelaw took effect from 1/11/2012 and prohibits the use of mobile fishing gears in the designated area, and the taking of scallops by any method.

Category: Government

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