Following the trial last summer of modified beach nets, the Environment Agency has now launched a consultation on a potential extension to the Yorkshire and North East coastal sea trout netting season.
The EA’s own documents attached to this consultation state:
“The latest assessments of sea trout stocks contributing to the coastal net fishery indicate the Coquet, Wear, Tees and Yorkshire Esk sea trout stocks are probably at risk.
Rod catches have shown a marked downward trend, falling to historically low levels on a number of rivers. The Tyne is assessed as probably not at risk, although the sea trout rod catch also shows a downward trend since 2010.
In Scotland, sea trout from the River Tweed catchment contribute to catches in the North East coastal net fishery. Since 2010, rod catches of sea trout on the Tweed have shown a declining trend, with the 2018 rod catch of 775 being the lowest since 1984.”
In light of this decline in catches and with nearly all major rivers in our area probably at risk, it is surely folly to continue netting for sea trout, let alone contemplate extending the season.
This consultation runs from 20th January to 21st February – do not miss this chance to have your say!