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Revive the Clyde

 

Sustainable Inshore Fisheries Trust (SIFT) has initiated the ‘Revive the Clyde’ campaign and I have signed up as a ‘Local Champion’

The campaign aims to encourage the public to support calls for the way the Clyde fishery is managed.     The campaign provides the public with a platform and opportunity to make their opinions heard.     The aim was to get 10,000 people signed up over the summer of 2014 and it is essential to the campaign that all stakeholders (anglers, commercial fishermen, divers and business owners etc) recognise there is a benefit for them in giving their support.

The campaign uses a website www.revivetheclyde.org as the main vehicle to engage the public and solicit their support.     The website provides the following;

  • A ‘Clyde Charter’ that outlines key principles essential for future management of the fisheries.They can do this by giving their details on the website or by filling in a support card.

  • A visual ‘scrolling’ feature which tells the story of the Clyde fishery and why it has changed.It focuses on the economic and ecological losses the Clyde has suffered since towed fishing gears were allowed into its close inshore waters in the 1960s.

  • A ‘Have your say section’ which allows the public to submit memories and opinion on the Clyde fishery and the way it has been managed or simply express why they value or want a healthy fishery.

  • A ‘Fish N Chips’ page, designed to share campaign videos, facts on the Clyde fishery and up to date research for those who wish to know more.

The campaign will outline some of the ways the Clyde fishery can achieve a sustainable revival through adopting possible measures such as;

  • Mobile gear zones. Located over areas of less sensitive seabed, for trawling and dredging.

  • Static gear zones exclusively for creeling, angling and other low impact fishing which are key components of a sustainable fishery

  • Small protection zones, located in areas with the greatest capacity to support biodiversity

  • Control measures such as licences to keep fishing effort at sustainable levels

SIFT intends to submit an application for a Regulating Order to the Scottish Govt. in early 2015 and hopes that the weight of public opinion can be brought to bear on the Govt.

Cllr B Marshall

 

 

A few facts and some folk lore

 

  • In the middle years of the last century the Firth of Clyde Inland Sea (north of a line from Campbeltown to Stranraer, an area of 3700KM2 ) was teeming with 13 different species of fish.Today, practically the only species found are whiting and depleting numbers of mackerel coming in the summer months

  • The Clyde used to be one of the finest sea angling areas in the UKRecord cod weighing 93lbs was caught off the Gantocks at Dunoon in the 60s.

  • Bottom trawling for prawns is destroying the seabed habitat and leaving all sorts of crustaceans dead in its wake.This constant raking of the seabed is destroying the small seabed reefs where fish historically spawned and sheltered from predators.According to divers, the seabed is becoming like a desert.

  • The modern Clyde trawling gear is so efficient in this day and age that fish find it hard to escape.There are so few fish left in the Clyde, these trawlers are generally only seen in inland waters when it is too stormy to go far out to sea.

  • Catching prawns using creels causes no damage to the subsea biodiversity

  • Catching fish with rod or line is a pursuit of millions of British people and can be very beneficial to the tourism economy of our area.The once thriving fishing tourism economy disappeared many years ago and has had a very damaging effect upon local Clyde coast economies.