Expanding catch quota trial

World Fishing and Aquaculture reported this week that Scotland is expanding its catch quota trial in a bid to reduce discards.

The catch quota scheme allows for all fish that is caught to be landed, instead of the traditional quotas, where limits are set on the quantity of fish a vessel can land, with any surplus having to be thrown back dead, into the sea.

Catch quota trials were held in 2010 involving 17 Scottish vessels, this will be expanded in 2011 to 26 vessel.  As well including boats from the whitefish fleet heartland in the North East of Scotland, skippers from across the country are taking part, including the West Coast, Orkney and Shetland.

Under catch quotas vessels can land, rather than be forced to discard, an extra amount equal to 12% of the Total Allowable Catch (TAC) for cod.

To ensure there are no discards, the fishing practice of participating vessels is fully documented through on board cameras.  The Scottish Government has provided £400,000 pounds for the purchase and installation of the new monitoring equipment.

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Other information

Big fish fight – Half of all fish caught in the North sea are thrown back, dead.  Visit Hugh Fernlea-Whittingstall’s Big Fish Fisght website, to see how we can help put a stop to this insane practice.

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