Discussion in 'Sea Fishing Forum - Shore, Boat & Kayak Fishing' started by Baramundi Bob, Mar 6, 2011.
The only area I can feel sympathy with commercials for is the undersize catch - but all that means is that someone will have to develope a decent use for them - fishcakes maybe, or even go to fishmeal and help preserve some sandeels (and I notice that daft beggar is eating them now!)
How can anyone morally defend high grading ??
As usual it's all about short term gain, make your money as fast as you can, and ferk the rest.
Was talking to a mate about under size fish being caught whilst trawling he said they use big mesh nets,i think he said 130mm cod ends and 6'' wing meshes plus a square panel in the bag and get very little disgards.
Things have changed then.
Would be nice to get peoples comments on the actual article
You tell me Rob, Its a disgrace, but as the article says, If High Grading is stopped then tradable quota suddenly becomes far less valuable
Looks like its only the over 10m fleet that are not happy with him according to the way I read the article. The main issues seem to be around high grading and leasing quota's. You just can't please some people and the over 10's are showing just how greedy they are.
It just shows what the hell is going on high grading is discrace its all going to come into the open .
The article seems to be admonishing Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall for not telling the whole story of discards, ie, missing out undersize and high grading. It then gives a simple demonstration on how and why high grading is used and what will happen if the EU decide to ban discards.
Finally the article ends by stating that it will be the larger Commercial fishermen will be the loosers.
Personally, in HFW's defence he is trying to show the lunacy of EU policies on discards and trying to get them changed. Highlighting highgrading at this point would just alienate the fishing fleet whos help he needs. If EU policy on discards doesn't change, then HFW should go after the high graders.
Is that what you wanted?
High Grading is suposedly illegal now, this will just prmote further High Grading, or alternatively they will voluntarily increase codend mesh size. There is a lot for the scientists and legislators to think about and get right on this one. As they cannot really get rid of the quota system there are few options for change. I am sure it will all lead to new range of illegal activity so not much benefit to fish stocks.
It's easy to have ago at HFW but as I see it he may have missed some important points,he's not a fisherman but he's speeking up on a matter that does have to change and needs to be adressed the EU policy makers are bumblig fools like so many remote policy makers.Anything that courses the issues to be discussed is possative.I can see the paradox of having may be borrowed money to have a commercial boat and needing to make a living as well but we may need to do thing differently if everyone is to enjoy fish in the future the article was unfare to HFW.
I agree littleshack. Any criticism now aimed at him is well off the mark imo. He never claimed to have the answers, why use him as a scapegoat. He brought what everyone has been complaining about for years to the attention of the public. Things are changing as we speak, it's up to the powers that be now.
I could not agree more and I am certainly not Knocking Hugh, but I wonder what room for manouver the EU have after so many years entrenched in a quota system with all the time series data associated with that system. How else do you share out a finite stock betweem Nations, producer organisations and boats. Like Hugh I do not have an answer to that, and I doubt if many scientists or politicians do! He has certainly set the establishment a massive challenge which is why I am somewhat cynical about effective change that is little more than window dressing.
to me its like this. go out catch fish bring bak wot you catch and sell it or they will be none to sell.simpelz
A point that I tried to make with the article (Which I hope people read before commenting), and one I feel a few people may be missing, was that although the program portrayed Hugh and commercial fishermen in perfect harmony, perhaps this isn't really the truth of the matter. No-one can deny that a change is required as discarding is a very destructive process, but I wonder if Hugh realises that maybe not all commercial fishermen think his idea is the best thing since sliced bread. Perhaps some dont want to see an end to discards because of the effect it will have on quota trading.
It would be a simple solution if in doing so, all of the fish caught was sellable, but the problem is that it isn't. Undersized fish and important parts of their foodchain are wasted because they have no value to the fishermen who destroy them. It stands to reason that this can only damage levels of fish stocks whilst it is allowed to continue. Whilst I wouldn't say the the quota system is a total disaster, it clearly needs to be revised on a regular basis and far greater monitoring carried out to protect the population of all our species of fish and whatever it is that sustains them.
If the gardener doesn't provide the right conditions, he knows that he is not going to be able to grow every type of vegetable that his soil will allow, so he cultivates and nourishes the soil and is rewarded with higher yields for doing so. However, if he simply leaves it to alone, it will still thrive with vegetation. You;ve probably heard how many gardeners and allotment holders actually grow what is known as 'green manure', plants that are not harvested for human consumption, but dug into the soil to release nutrients that help their crops to thrive.
HFW may not be a fisherman, but the same principle applies to our oceans and what we would like them to contain.
Not only is this analogy applicable to the sea, but it can be used to explain what can happen when it is abused.
It is hardly going to cause a national food shortage when an aspiring Percy Thrower liberally douses his modest plot with glyphosate to suppress weeds and everything else, and then attempts to grow vegetables without cultivating the soil or providing the crop with adequate nourishment. It is likely to result in a low yield, and more importantly, even lower yields if he repeats the same action over and over again.
But if the same procedure was carried out on a bigger scale by farmers, and even worse, if they were only interested in producing one particular crop (which is usually the case), then it would obviously have more serious consequences. Multiply the number of farmers growing the same crop using the same methods and you multiply the consequences. Even if the method is improved and it produces higher yields, it can create less opportunity for other crops to thrive and there is always the chance of a natural disaster wiping out the one and only crop. (eg. Irish potato famine).
In fact it could be argued that the same sort of methods applied to harvesting the oceans using quotas, is even riskier considering the fact that the quarry consists largely of predatory species of fish which rely on a reliable source of specific food. That is the main reason why predatory species are migratory and because of this, the whole business of fishing has got to be managed internationally. Of course it is easier said that done, but people like HFW have the power to bring the subject to the attention of the ordinary person sat at home in front of their TV, many who enjoy eating fish without ever considering where it was caught, how it was caught, what method was used to catch it, and why the answers to these questions are important.
Personally, I'm happy to eat many species of fish and I am interested to know where it has come from if buying it rather than catching it. I suspect that most of us sea anglers feel the same way.
Anyway, that's rant over. You can tell that I'm a fair-weather angler can't you ?
It's a good job we don't harvest tomatoes like we harvest fish. I sometimes wonder if someone like HFW, knowing the problems to be immense, doesn't just shake the tree to see what falls. I imagine that most folks have it in one; behind quotas, mesh sizes, high grading and discards the problem is the way we fish commercially; the relatively blind and indiscriminate activity of dragging of a big net across the sea bed.
You're not wrong there, Steve. And then the commercials have the audacity to claim that sea anglers are adversely affecting fish stocks. :angry:
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