The world's best flyfishing site.
Good news bad news


Manual de Lanzado
Sección de Carlos
The Downloads


Monday: Paul Arden
Tuesday: Harps
Wednesday: Bernd Ziesche
Thursday: Mr T.
Friday: Ray
Saturday: Viking Lars
Sunday: Bruce Richards

Ronan's report

Sunday May 20th 2012

A ray of hope for US fish stocks. On May 14th the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) reported that six federal fisheries returned to health last year, a record year after ten years of improvement.

Apparently 86 percent of the US fish populations examined for fishing activity were not subject to overfishing, and 79 percent of assessed populations are not overfished, or were above levels that require a rebuilding plan.

The NOAA press release states that: "Fishermen, fishing communities, and seafood and sportfishing businesses are investing in the solutions that are helping end overfishing and rebuild our nation's fish populations."

So that's all good then.

But. There's always a but.

Many environmentalists believe that one of the things helping fisheries to improve has been the implementation of catch share arrangements. This is where fishermen are allowed to buy a long-term tradable share in a fishery. The idea is that this encourages a long-term perspective from commercial fisherman who will see it in their interest that fish populations increase as (a) their catches grow and (b) the value of their fishery share grows too.

A study into the efficacy of catch shares concluded that:
a) Fisheries managed with catch share programs dramatically outperformed fisheries without them: they were only half as likely to have collapsed by 2003.
b) If catch share systems been in place globally in 1970, only about 9 percent of the world's fisheries would have collapsed by 2003, rather than 27 percent.

So you'd think everyone would be pushing for more catch share arrangements, Wouldn't you?

Apparently not. In a narrow victory Congress just passed a law forbidding NOAA from developing catch shares further. This because of evidence that catch shares ultimately concentrate in the hands of larger operators/larger boats, resulting in fewer jobs for fishermen.

One congressman is quoted as saying catch shares had been designed "to destroy every aspect of American Freedom under the guise of conservation". Crikey, is NOAA being run by Al Qaeda?!

I understand the concerns of lost jobs and concentration of fishing power in the hands of larger outfits. But surely it can't be beyond the wit of man to design a catch-share system which runs alongside regulation of fleet/boat size (if that's what you really need to do).

Protecting rights and freedoms are important. The challenge here (which Congress has signally failed to meet) is to balance fisherman's rights with the rights of all Americans, their children and their children's children, to catch fish both commercially and recreationally.


Pic Of Day

SL Promotions



SEXYLOOPS SCHOOLS - Flycasting in England and Hungary. Contact Paul Arden for more info.

Sexyloops on Facebook: Sexyloops on YouTube: www.YouTube/SexyloopsTV. This is Snapcast - our irregular monthly mailshot!

<-- Copyright Notice -->