UK Fisheries Bycatch Policy

Managing bycatch in UK commercial fisheries is a collaborative effort involving scientists and the fishing industry. Bycatch policy in each home nation is led by Defra, the Welsh Government, the Northern Ireland Assembly and Marine Scotland, respectively.

Clean Catch UK supports the development and implementation of effective bycatch policies through gathering information about bycatch rates and studying new bycatch reduction techniques. While outcomes will be specifically applicable to the South-west English fisheries in the first instance, Clean Catch UK research is public and potentially applicable to fisheries management efforts across the UK.

The challenge is complex, and solutions will be varied. Using a coordinated, stakeholder-led approach, Clean Catch UK hopes our rigorous, collaborative efforts can contribute to future bycatch reduction policy in other UK fisheries. 

The policy guiding the efforts of Clean Catch UK in England is led by Defra and will be underpinned by two National Plans of Action, written to help reduce, and, where possible, eliminate bycatch in UK fisheries.

UK CETACEAN BYCATCH

PLAN OF ACTION

Defra is currently preparing the UK Cetacean Bycatch Plan of Action, which will provide a roadmap for the next 5 years, outlining actions to be undertaken to help secure our overarching aim – to minimise, and where possible, eliminate cetacean bycatch in UK fisheries.

The Plan of Action will be published in early 2021.

UK SEABIRD BYCATCH

PLAN OF ACTION

Defra is currently preparing the UK Seabird Bycatch Plan of Action, which will provide a roadmap for the next 5 years, outlining actions to be undertaken to help secure our overarching aim – to minimise, and where possible, eliminate seabird bycatch in UK fisheries.

The Plan of Action will be published in early 2021.