One of the biggest dangers to Uk fishing is the increasing risks form invasive species. Signal Crayfish already cause serious issues for anglers and fisheries around the country and the Environment Agency has been working very hard, with some success to eradicate Topmouth Gudgeon which could be catastrophic for UK fisheries if they were left to spread unchecked. There have also been the recent scares with Killer Shrimp and Demon Shrimp, not to mention zebra mussels.
The Angling Trust is lobbying hard both at a UK level and European for a new European Regulation to control invasive non-native species and to bring in controls to get the rest of Europe to take action to stop species like the Killer Shrimp and Demon Shrimp getting to England. So far we have managed to contain the Killer Shrimp to 3 locations in England and Wales thanks to the precautions taken by anglers amongst others, but sitting in Europe are many species that we really do not want over here including Black Sea Gobies and Quagga Mussels. These will damage our fishing if they get here.
By being active in Europe through the European Anglers Alliance and with like minded partners on this issue like the European Environment Bureau and Bird Life we are working hard to get both the European Parliament and the Council to adopt sensible measures to challenge both the threat of what might come here but also what is here already. We hope that all will be in agreement for the Regulation to have its first reading in April so that it can be passed before Parliament breaks for elections in May. We urge anglers to vote in the European Election even if you just ask the candidates one question – Did you support the Regulation in Parliament? If not don’t vote for them.
If you want to know who your MEP is just tap you postcode into this website
By Mark Owen