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Predation has major effect on UK fish stocks, says NGO

Riverkeepers and gillies have been consulted in an NGO fishery survey.

A new fisheries survey conducted by the National Gamekeepers’ Organisation (NGO) raises concerns over the effect that predation has on UK fish stocks. 

The NGO is best known for representing gamekeepers and stalkers but also works closely with gillies and riverkeepers. Given the general plight of UK’s rivers, streams and lakes, widely reported in Shooting Times, the organisation sought to get the views of “experts in the field of legal predator control” with regards to predation on fish stocks. 

The survey has shown that those involved in fishery management or angling feel predation is having a major effect on the UK’s fish stocks, and that 97% of those surveyed would like to see more legal protection for fish from predatory species such as cormorants, herons, mink and otters. A further 80% of respondents said predation affects the viability of fisheries. 

The survey also found that brown trout were the most prevalent species of fish, while Atlantic salmon was near the bottom of the list. This is not unexpected as the main UK population of Atlantic salmon have this year been reclassified as “endangered”. 

A spokesman said, “Once a new government is elected, the NGO looks forward to working with them to create the best protection for our fish stocks as possible.”