Coarse closed season to remain

seth49

Well-known member
Press release
Close season retained following public consultation
The Environment Agency has decided to retain the current coarse fishing close season on English rivers.

Published 20 August 2019
From:
Environment Agency
8 Barbel in the water (viewed from above)
Barbel

The decision follows a detailed review of the evidence and responses provided to a public consultation which indicate that removing the close season would pose a risk to coarse fish in some locations.

The close season for coarse fishing on rivers was introduced in 1878 and is in force from 15 March to 15 June. It aims to reduce risks to spawning fish caused by angling.

The review also showed that amending the start and end dates of the close season would increase protection for some fish that spawn later but would increase risks for those that spawn early.

Support among anglers for retaining a close season and removing it is finely balanced. The 8 week public consultation received 13,680 responses with 38.8% of anglers supporting retaining the current close season; 9.2% support retaining a close season, but changing the dates to 15 April to 30 June; and 49.8% support removing the close season altogether. 2.2% were undecided or didn’t respond.

The responders were invited to provide evidence to support their view and the Environment Agency has assessed that evidence, alongside other considerations, and determined that there is not a case for changing the current close season.

In addition to the evidence supplied through the consultation, the experience of the Environment Agency’s own fish farm at Calverton has shown that some species, notably Chub and Barbel, form large spawning aggregations that can be very sensitive to disturbance. Where disturbed, spawning females may reabsorb their eggs and defer spawning to the following season rather than spawning elsewhere or later.

Kevin Austin, Deputy Director of Fisheries at the Environment Agency said:

“We are really grateful to the people who took the time to respond to the consultation. We have analysed the many comments from the 13,680 responses to understand the evidence and opinions around the close season. Given the limited further evidence on risks to coarse and other fish stocks, we have decided to retain the close season.”

“We would also like to thank the joint Angling Trust/Institute of Fisheries Management study group for its work to collate, analyse and interpret the available evidence on the close season. This enabled an informed public debate. While the group concluded a more risk-based approach may be possible, our priority is to find the right balance between angling and protecting fish stocks. The current close season is risk-based and maintains protection for the majority of coarse fish.

“We recognise that some anglers will be disappointed in this outcome, while others will welcome it. This reflects a shared passion for fishing.

“We will continue, working with partners, to consider any new information on the close season as and when it becomes available.”
 

markg

Well-known member
That's 59% for changing it or dropping it all together against 38% keeping it as it is. Surely that's a vote for a change of some sort!
Plus fish on a fish farm are not indicative of how wild fish might behave although they "could" be right plus it's still only two species. What sort of disturbance did they create in thier experiment on a fish farm, was it the same to what anglers might cause in a river? Not my area at all but I would be curious about that.
I am not bothered but seems unbalanced to me and not really a fair decision, the result when looked at overall is not finely balanced IMO.
 
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theartist

Well-known member
That's 59% for changing it or dropping it all together against 38% keeping it as it is. Surely that's a vote for a change of some sort!
That's spinning the figures, ever thought of being a politician? lol It was a basically a 50/50 split between keep and remove.

I was hugely surprised given that many who voted would have been raised fishing commercials and only fish a rivers once or twice a year, not even close to the landslide many in the angling press had hoped for.
 

nottskev

Well-known member
Most of the river stretches I fish are barely fished in summer, unfished through the winter and unfishable through the spring. I think fish in rivers need protection from a lot of things, as do rivers, but I doubt anglers figure significantly amongst them. Inertia and apathy (how many took part in the survey?) rule the day.
 

barbelboi

Well-known member
As I predominately fish rivers and streams (often covering a lot of ground during a session) I'm just about ready for a break come March - gives me a chance for a sit down for a few crucians and tench..............
 

rayner

Well-known member
I for one didn't vote. All my fishing was on rivers, since the end of the 90s I've been unable to fish what I deem natural venues.
The end result of keep it, end it is a good result to me.
 

daniel121

Well-known member
That's spinning the figures, ever thought of being a politician? lol It was a basically a 50/50 split between keep and remove.

I was hugely surprised given that many who voted would have been raised fishing commercials and only fish a rivers once or twice a year, not even close to the landslide many in the angling press had hoped for.
Oh my lord, this sounds like a fishing version of Brexit!

I for one don't fish rivers anymore but that's not out of choice. The closed season is an outdated concept which used to serve a point now is redundant die to falling numbers of anglers who fish rivers. Many strechers of river don't see an angler from one month to the next and are vastly overgrown, there is no point closing what is already closed effectively. For example the river trent is dire in the winter, you have more hope of catching a 8lb barble than a 2oz roach. The river closes itself.

Anyway this will never be solved, as I said it literally the Brexit of fishermen it's the one topic that's gets us all factioned off against eachother consistantly.

As you can tell I'm disappointed in the result particularly as the status quo has no mandate, likewise I accept abolishing the closed season has little either.
 

theartist

Well-known member
Oh my lord, this sounds like a fishing version of Brexit!
I hope not otherwise those who didn't get the result they wanted will keep on and on until it's redone in their favour :wh

I really feel for The Scottish independent Remainers who want the close season gone :D
 

markg

Well-known member
That's spinning the figures, ever thought of being a politician? lol It was a basically a 50/50 split between keep and remove.

/QUOTE]
Hrrrrrmph, as Boris would say and that's all I have to say also. 50 50 is what Dianne Abbot would have made it:)
If the wording was - would you like some change to the CS or leave it as it is - it would have been 59% for change and only 38% for leaving it as it is.
I am not bothered myself, keep it by all means but the desire for change by the majority is evident to me, has that been properly recognized or was it all just a PR excercise?
Or look it another way, 59% did not want this decision. I dunno, country going to pot.
 
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s63

Well-known member
Bother. Needed that change, my years of being able to safely fish a river are dwindling.
 

daniel121

Well-known member
I hope not otherwise those who didn't get the result they wanted will keep on and on until it's redone in their favour :wh

I really feel for The Scottish independent Remainers who want the close season gone :D
Yes mate, i wonder if they knew what they was voting for? :D
 

Jelster

Well-known member
For me it's not solely about breeding fish. Water birds and other wildlife are also breeding, plus the banks need a break too. The close season also helps the banks recover, and allows work to be carried out while we're not fishing.

Personally, I think the rise of the commercial day ticket waters is taking us down a path, and not a good one, but that's another discussion.
 

peter crabtree

Well-known member
It was never going to change, even if the vote had been a landslide in favour of scrapping the CS.
The EA simply don't have the money, staff or resources to administer the complexities of a change.
It would probably take 10 to 20 years of consultations etc to implement it if they had to.
 

markg

Well-known member
Might be a good thing in one way, if they changed the law it would have to be debated in Parliament and that would bring out all the anti brigade who would probably get the public on their side and then worse might evolve, let sleeping dogs lay!
 
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