Sussex Netting Byelaw

Sussex Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority was told that it should consult on radical changes it made to its proposed netting byelaw (scrapping the proposed “netting exclusion zones” and allowing netting very close to the shore).

Bass Angling Conservation has now replied to the consultation. You can read our full response below, but the key points are:

  • SxIFCA needs to consider the needs of recreational fishers, not just commercial fishers. Nearshore nets damage the sea angling experience and reduce socio-economic benefits: nearshore nets can stop sea anglers casting, and strip fish out of a local area, both short term and long term.
  • more protection is needed for sea trout. The Environment Agency has said protecting just the top 1.5 metres of the water column from nets is not sufficient. We need nearshore spatial restrictions.
  • drift nets should be subject to the same rules as fixed nets, following Environment Agency advice.
  • in 2023, no one landed fish into Sussex caught using ring nets or seine nets. So let’s stop them being used Sussex.