Thank you in advance for doing this and i really hope it will not be the last one you all do, right now my Question.
Our "wonderful" CONDEM Government are cutting budgets back left right and centre, so how much is being cut back from your budget for the next 4 years and what does that mean for projects in the area and your re-stocking of our rivers policy,also will it effect your ability to prosecute any polluters . Will it mean there are even less bailiffs and will it put a holt to any habitat work . best regards Malc.
Post by yorkshirepiker on Mar 2, 2011 11:06:49 GMT
I noticed in this weeks at that bailiffs are already at an all time low.
In turn so are the number of licence dodgers that have been successfully taken to court.
"in 2000 the ea had 50 full time and 70 part time bailiffs. By 2010 this had fallen to just 30 full time and 2 part time 'enforcement officers' "
"in the last nine months of 2010, bailiffs checked 80,877 licences, down from 151,172 in the same period of 2005"
"in the last nine months of 2010, the EA took 2127 licence dodgers to court, down from 3,261 five years previously"
The EA has defended it's swingeing staff cuts by claiming that it has employed 103 full time 'crime officers' in place of bailiffs. A spokesperson or the agency said: " the figures show that over the past decade we have increased our full time fisheries and enforcement officers to 133."
However far from concentrating on fisheries duties, angling times learnt that the remit of these 'crime officers' covers a range of other areas, including investigating fly tipping and planning regulation abuses.
Mike Heylin, chairman of the angling trust, said. "these figures tie in with anglers' concerns that EA enforcement of fisheries byelaws and licensing has reduced over a period of years.
"the proposals that the trust has made to the EA on working with trained and warranted volunteer bailiffs will go a long way to increasing the number of licence checks"
I thought this was interesting reading and relevant to your question beachball!
Why they can't / don't respond immediately to reports of fish theft from waters? I have personally reported the killing and removal of pike and perch from 2 of my local waterways and not even had a response. The local bailiff refused to get involved as he was scared to because he had put up with threats of violence from said poachers and decided it was more hassle than it was worth...that can't be right. And before they say 'You should ring the police'...they don't seem to give a toss either, so maybe a better relationship / scheme between them and the EA would be a good thing.
Another question from a concerned angler is as follows:
I'd like to know more about stocking waters. I remember as a kid you used to read in the AT etc about how many fish were being stocked into our rivers etc, but that never seems to happen now...and I thought that`s what part of our license fee was used for...do they still do this? I don't actually know...
Post by envagencyyorkshire on Mar 10, 2011 12:05:00 GMT
Q: Our "wonderful" CONDEM Government are cutting budgets back left right and centre, so how much is being cut back from your budget for the next 4 years and what does that mean for projects in the area and your re-stocking of our rivers policy, also will it effect your ability to prosecute any polluters. Will it mean there are even less bailiffs and will it put a holt to any habitat work?
A: We have yet to be told how much funding we will get from Government this year, however we anticipate some cuts will be inevitable.
The majority of funding for Fisheries comes from rod license sales and this year we have seen a drop in sales of approximately 4.18%. On top of this we will not be raising the cost of the rod licence for the 2011/12 season. What this means is that in real terms we will see a reduction in available resources once inflationary effects are taken into account. While decisions remain to be made on exactly how this will impact on our work, we are hopeful we can manage these impacts with a minimum of disruption to our fisheries service.
The Environment Agency has made, and will continue to make great efforts to improve its efficiency and to target our resources to where they deliver the greatest benefits. An example of this can be seen when considering our fish stocking programmes. In many cases rivers which have been supported through artificial stocking in the past have seen great improvements in water quality, habitat and access allowing fish in some instances to form self sustaining populations such as is the case on the River Calder. Here we would look to reduce our stocking effort or even stop stocking altogether to allow natural fish stocks to develop and allow us to focus resources on other recovering rivers in the area.
We will also continue to work in partnerships. Using this approach we can get access to other funding sources and partners who we can work together with to deliver fisheries improvements. In 2009/10 for example we received £302,000 of fisheries income to improve fisheries and angling and by working with partners we actually delivered improvements to the value of £2,722,000 in Yorkshire and the North East.
We have also applied to Defra for funding to deliver Water Framework Directive (WFD) outcomes. While we have received indications that money will be made available we have yet to receive clarification on the details and what this will mean for work in Yorkshire. We are confident however that any additional revenue we receive will enable us to continue to improve fisheries.
Your answers indicate that you are not too sure as to how cutbacks are going to impact upon yourselves and our fisheries. Does this mean that when you do get the answers you will come back onto our forum and tell us how you see things panning out ?
Post by envagencyyorkshire on Mar 10, 2011 12:19:42 GMT
You're right that we are still waiting to see what will happen. We will keep you updated via our newsletters, which get posted on this website (there's a link to them on the front page). We want to see how today goes, but if it's something that people want us to repeat we will certainly do this again. Jerome.
Post by envagencyyorkshire on Mar 10, 2011 13:24:37 GMT
Q: I'd like to know more about stocking waters. I remember as a kid you used to read in the AT etc about how many fish were being stocked into our rivers etc, but that never seems to happen now...and I thought that’s what part of our license fee was used for...do they still do this?
We still stock our waters where we think that there is a need to do so. For example if we feel that a species that should be there is missing, as mitigation following a pollution or as part of a wider project. All of the fish we stock come from the Environment Agency’s farm at Calverton near Nottingham, the running of which is funded by your rod licence money.
Last year in Yorkshire we stocked:
200 tench and 200 roach in to Charlton Brook Dam in Sheffield. 400 chub and 500 roach into Ea Beck 500 dace and 500 grayling into the River Colne 3000 barbel and 1500 grayling into the River Aire 1500 barbel into the River Don 1000 grayling into the River Dearne 1200 crucians and and 100 tench into Scarborough Mere 500 crucians and 500 tench into Thirley Ponds 500 chub, 500 dace, 100 grayling and 100 roach into a tributary of the River Rye 250 barbel, 1500 dace and 1500 roach into Beck 1500 barbel, 500 chub, 1000 dace and 1000 roach into the River Nidd 500 chub and 500 dace into Bedale Beck 1000 barbel into the River Swale 500 chub and 500 dace into the River Wiske.
When we do these introductions we issue press releases to let people know. Often these are picked up by local and regional newspapers but although issued to the national angling media we have no say over if they print them or not.
The number of fish we stock reduces yearly until we reach a situation where hopefully the population becomes self sustaining. With that in mind we are planning to stock the following in 2011:
250 dace into the River Colne 3000 barbel and 1000 grayling into the River Aire 1000 barbel into the River Don 500 grayling into the River Dearne
Unfortunately final numbers for the other stocking locations have not been finalised yet but we will let you know numbers when we have them.
Obviously these plans are subject to change. If there was a serious pollution for example it may be that we would need to move some of these fish to other locations. The locations for our fish stockings are decided upon using the data from our program of electro fishing surveys. This information is invaluable as it enables us to make informed decisions about where we put our fish to get the best environmental outcome.
Post by envagencyyorkshire on Mar 10, 2011 13:27:33 GMT
Q: Why they can't / don't respond immediately to reports of fish theft from waters? I have personally reported the killing and removal of pike and perch from 2 of my local waterways and not even had a response. The local bailiff refused to get involved as he was scared to because he had put up with threats of violence from said poachers and decided it was more hassle than it was worth...that can't be right. And before they say 'You should ring the police'...they don't seem to give a toss either, so maybe a better relationship / scheme between them and the EA would be a good thing.
We work very closely with the Police Wildlife Liaison Officers and share intelligence on a regular basis. As I have explained as part of another question we only have a small number of fisheries officers and we can’t be everywhere at the same time. We take reports of all incidents seriously and if there is sufficient evidence to pursue a prosecution will do. To be able to do this though we have to be able to prove ‘beyond all reasonable doubt’ that an offence has been committed and sometimes this can be difficult. As I’m sure you’re aware our byelaws do allow for a certain number of fish to be taken legally, the only stipulation on this is that in the case of a stillwater the owners consent must be obtained.
If you are a direct witness to an incident (we cannot pursue second hand intelligence), there are ways that you can help us to investigate. Firstly do not try and intervene or put yourself in a position where you could come to harm.
What you need to do is gather as much information as possible. The type of information we need is:
Time and date What exactly was happening Who was there Do you know them What did they look like Were they in a vehicle What was the registration number
Using this information we can then take a statement from you and this will form the basis of our investigation.