15 April 2010
The Marine Resources section of Jersey's Environment Division has released its annual report into the section’s activity and the reported landings of local fish species last year (2009).
Lobster catches, which contribute more than 50% of the value of the shellfish landed, were up to the highest level recorded at 176 tonnes. Scallop landings also improved while spider crab catches were stable. The reduction in brown crab and whelk was in part due to poor market demand.
Fish landings which are traditionally much lower than shellfish took a dip to 68 tonnes in part due to larger trawlers being prohibited from fishing inshore areas in 2009.
The fish farming sector took another leap to record over 1000 tonnes of shellfish produced valued at £1.7m.
Monitoring to provide data to manage stocks included work on whelk, lobster, ray and ormers. Other stocks were also analysed for long term pollution monitoring.
Enforcement and surveillance work showed that while professional fishermen were, in the main, good at respecting conservation legislation some amateurs, particularly low water fishermen, still continue to disregard conservation regulations. New leaflets in both English and French have been distributed to give people more information about marine conservation.
The section also began work on Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM) initiatives following the agreement by the States of the ICZM strategy in October 2008.
Constable Len Norman said, "I am pleased to release this report which shows that the Jersey fishery is in excellent health. The continued work of the Fisheries and Marine Resources section ensures that the natural marine resource continues to thrive and this shows the benefit of providing a well regulated environment for our fishing industry to prosper within."
Fisheries and Marine annual report