Anglers show they care

PUBLISHED: 12:31 04 February 2010 | UPDATED: 16:31 30 June 2010

PREDATOR anglers fishing from the banks of the River Bure at St Benets Abbey and the River Thurne at Cold Harbour, Ludham will next season be banned from transporting any coarse fish to or from these venues.

PREDATOR anglers fishing from the banks of the River Bure at St Benets Abbey and the River Thurne at Cold Harbour, Ludham will next season be banned from transporting any coarse fish to or from these venues.

In addition, eels, now an endangered species, will have to be returned to the water immediately they are caught, and will also be ineligible for weighing at competitions, writes Roy Webster.

This was decided at the annual meeting of the Norwich and District Anglers' Association (NDAA) and approved by a great majority.

Secretary of the Gorleston Jolly Boys and Yarmouth's Sportsmans angling clubs Lee Arnold, who attended the meeting, said banning eels was the correct decision and proved than anglers cared about the future of endangered species.

“Once again local anglers have taken the initiative on this important issue and pre-empted new international laws governing eels due to come into force some time next year,” he said.

He concluded: “Anglers in Yarmouth and Gorleston have a high regard for the NDAA, and its chairman Tony Gibbons is a real diamond, setting an example for all of involved in the administration of the sport.”

Gibbons explained to the meeting that new fishery bylaws set this year would allow predator anglers to take 15 coarse fish up to 20cm in length for use as bait but would allow angling clubs who control banks to implement their own rules.

“As we have never approved of live baiting from our banks, or taking fish for this purpose, we are taking steps to ban all movements of fish, both to and from the fisheries we lease - and the legislation allows us to enforce this rule,” he said.

It is acknowledged that these rules will apply only to anglers fishing from NDAA banks and not to boat anglers on the tidal reaches of the rivers Bure and Thurne, nor to other anglers in boats on the rivers Yare, Wensum and Waveney.

Meanwhile, pike anglers continue to struggle for fish on the Broads and rivers that again have been seriously affected by sub-zero temperatures.

However, the enclosed Trinity Broads are expected to be rewarding for pike anglers during the final weeks of the season which ends on March 14.

Other inland fisheries such as Fritton Lake and Martham Pits are also worth visiting and were expected to be completely ice free this weekend.

Sport last weekend hit rock bottom. The Jolly Boys' outing to Barford was won by Karl Hodgins with 9lb 10oz, then Mark Colman 6lb 12oz and Dave Grimwood 5lb 8oz.

Stalham Club members fished through man-made holes in the ice at their lagoons. The result: D Dearman 3lb, D Jones 2lb 5oz, B Clark 2lb 30oz.

Two beach matches for the Potter Heigham and District Sea Anglers produced meagre returns. At Caister the result was R Gurkless 1lb 11oz, S Watson 1lb 7oz (including a 13oz flounder), A Miller 15oz.

On the South Beach, 15-year-old Scott Watson won with 1lb 8½oz, beating his father Terry with 1lb 3½oz and A Miller 1lb.

The Broads Authority planning officers and members meet today to approve or otherwise the plan to dredge Heigham Sounds.

Objections have been lodged by the Norwich and District Pike Angling Club who fear the disturbance of silt could spark a deadly outbreak of the prymnesium algae that wiped out millions of coarse fish and eels in the River Thurne valley waters in 1969.

The anglers believe their opposition and detailed input of international data of the killer organism will lead to a public inquiry into this contentious proposal to deepen and widen the navigation channel.

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