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Latest News

24
Nov '22

Southern IFCA Vacancy - Project Officer: Fisheries Management Plans

IFCA’s have been tasked by Defra to support the planning, preparation and publication phases of Fisheries Management Plans (FMPs). FMPs are a new policy tool which Defra and its Arm’s Length Bodies will use to implement the objectives of the Fisheries Act 2020. This is a unique opportunity to be involved in innovative work which is shaping the future of fisheries management.

Working in the Fisheries Management and Policy Team you will represent Southern IFCA at FMP meetings and working groups. You will coordinate the provision of information, evidence and data to support the development of the FMPs, as requested by delivery partners and as guided by your line manager. You will work with local and national colleagues, as well as help to coordinate communications and engagement with the inshore fishing communities. 
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8
Nov '22

Southern IFCA Vacancy - Accountant

Working remotely, you will support the role of Chief Executive Officer in the provision and development of an effective and efficient financial service by the Authority

You will oversee and be responsible for the accounting and finances systems, ensuring that they are managed effectively and efficiently in accordance with professional standards, appropriate financial policies and procedure and the Southern IFCA Financial Regulations. In doing so, you will develop and maintain good working relationships with the Chief Executive Officer, the Finance Manager and external auditor providers.. 
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03
Oct '22

Southern IFCA Annual Report April 2021 to March 2022 - Now Available!

The Southern IFCA Annual Report for the period April 2021 to March 2022 has now been published on our website! View the Annual Report for April 2021 to March 2022.

The IFCA are required, under the Marine and Coastal Access Act (2009), to produce an Annual Report, which seeks to provide an account of the work delivered during the previous reporting year. This report is sent to the Secretary of State annually following the end of the financial year.  

The Report shines a spotlight on some of our key delivery priorities over the last year including;

  • Marine licensing
  • Working with academic institutions
  • Deployment of our drone
  • Intelligence and investigation outcomes
  • Joint working with partner organisations
  • Development of management measures including for net fishing and pot fishing
  • Sustainable fisheries management in Poole and the Solent


There's something in there for everyone, we encourage you to take a look! 

Copies of this and previous Annual Reports can also be found on our Authority Reports page.

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28
Sep '22

New website page - Fisheries Management Plans

A new page has been launched on the Southern IFCA website to signpost our stakeholders to sources of information on the development of Fisheries Management Plans (FMPs) under The Fisheries Act 2020. Information is provided on the delivery partners who are working with Defra to develop each of the 'frontrunner' FMPs, updates from those delivery partners and any engagement opportunities. Contact information is also provided for the relevant delivery partner for each FMP.

Please click here to visit our new FMP page and use the clickable links within the page to navigate to information on a particular FMP.

23
Sep '22

King Scallop FMP in English & Welsh Waters

Seafish are currently developing a King Scallop Fisheries Management Plan (FMP). They are looking for you to get invovled during stakeholder events. This work is being led by the Scallop Industry Consultation Group Working Group, an industry-led co-management group. 

Please click here for more details including a list of engagement events

For more information or to register your interest in attending an event please contact fisheriesmanagementplans@seafish.co.uk. 

01
Sep '22

MSC Reassessment and 4th year Surveillance Audit Announced for Poole Clam & Cockle Fishery

The process of undertaking the 4th annual surveillance audit for the Marine Stewardship Council certification of the Poole Clam & Cockle Fishery has commenced. In addition, the fishery is also entering the process of re-assessment as the current certification (valid for 5 years) will come to an end in 2023. The audit and reassessment are being carried out by Control Union (UK) Limited.

There are three documents associated with this process which are currently open for stakeholder consultation on the MSC website, please click here to visit the page.

Stakeholder input is an essential source of information to the assessment process, please visit the above link for more information including how to register your interest in engaging with the assessment process for this fishery.

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20
July '22

Get Involved - Online debate for the new Bass Fisheries Management Plan (FMP)

As part of its work on the new bass fisheries management plan (FMP), Policy Lab will be running a nationwide online debate in which stakeholders from across the sector can get involved to share their ideas for the new FMP. This will take place between Monday 15th - Friday 19th August 2022. Participants take part by anonymously logging onto a platform for around 10 mins each day. While on the platform, they are presented with a series of statements about the bass world and the FMP, which they can vote to agree or disagree with. 

You can sign up by clicking here: https://tinyurl.com/bassfmpci
01
July '22

Policy Lab Drop-in Session for Sea Bass Fisheries Management Plan (FMP)

The Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (Defra) will publish a new Fisheries Management Plan (FMP) for sea bass in 2023. Defra and Policy Lab are working together to co-create the new plan with a diverse range of individuals and interest groups in this space. 

Policy Lab are running a drop-in session In Poole on 6th July between 10.30am - 3pm at the Quay Cafe to meet with fishers to discuss experiences of bass and perspectives for the new bass FMP.

Please click here for more information.

17
June '22

Bottom Towed Fishing Gear Consultation Begins!

On Friday the 17th of June 2022, the 6 week consultation period for the bottom towed fishing gear byelaw review began. 
 

The current byelaw manages the use of bottom towed fishing gear within the district through closure areas and gear restrictions. The consultation takes into account updated evidence and Southern IFCA invites responses from any interested parties until the 1st of August 2022. 

For more information visit our Live Consultations page for the full document and guidance on how to respond to the consultation. 

8
June '22

Court Outcome - Viviers (UK) Ltd. 7th June 2022

On Tuesday 7th June 2022 at Portsmouth Magistrates Court, Viviers (UK) Ltd., Fish and Shellfish Merchants, Camber Docks, Gunwharf Road, Portsmouth, pleaded guilty to 3 counts of storing undersized shellfish on their premises. Charges were laid by the Southern Inshore Fisheries & Conservation Authority and Viviers (UK) Ltd. were ordered to pay fines and costs totalling £10,946.00.

The court heard how on Thursday 16th December 2021 officers from the Southern IFCA attended the premises and carried out an inspection of the shellfish contained within. 317kg of manila clams were found stored within Viviers (UK) Ltd. A random sample of clams were inspected, of which an average of 12.4% measured below the Minimum Conservation Reference Size of 35mm (Minimum Conservation Reference Sizes ensure sustainable fish stocks by considering the maturity of a species and allowing time for reproduction before removal from the sea).

Officers returned to the premises for a follow-up inspection on Tuesday 21st December 2021, when they found 1000kg of manila clams stored within the premises. This time the percentage of undersized clams was much higher. Officers from the Southern IFCA individually measured 2250 manila clams, of which 1072 (47.6%) measured below the Minimum Conservation Reference Size. In addition, 38 undersized American Hard-Shelled clams were identified (The Minimum Conservation Reference Size for this type of clam is 63mm).

For the offence committed on 16th December 2021 the court issued Viviers (UK) Ltd. with a fine of £2000. In relation to the offences committed on 16th December 2021 - the company were fined £4000, for storing undersized manila clams, and £750 for undersized American Hard-Shelled clams. They were also ordered to pay prosecution costs of £4006 and a victim surcharge of £190, making the total of all fines & costs £10,946.

When asked to comment, Deputy Chief Officer Sam Dell said, “Minimum size legislation is the principle management tool to protect clams and the purchasing of undersized shellfish undermines the purpose of such legislation and protection of juvenile stock. The Southern IFCA is committed to protecting our coastal fisheries, ensuring healthy seas and a viable fishing industry. This type of illegal activity puts other legitimate Merchants at a disadvantage; by pursuing these matters vigorously through court we aim to support legitimate operators and protect the local fisheries”.

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10
May '22

MMO Voluntary No Anchor Zone Patrols

Over the last few weeks, Southern IFCA have supported the Marine Management Organisation (MMO) on a number of patrols of Studland Bay in order to raise awareness of the recently introduced Voluntary No Anchor Zone. Officers from the MMO engaged with over 70 vessels over the May Bank Holiday Weekend and reported "Approximately only 20% of people we engaged with said they were unaware of the voluntary no anchor zone which is an encouraging step in the right direction."

To read the full MMO blog on the Studland Bay Voluntary No Anchor Zone Patrols, please click here. 

6
May '22

Poole Fishermen Plead Guilty to Retention of Undersized Clams

On Wednesday 4th May 2022 at Poole Magistrates Court, Poole fishermen Andrew Skinner & Reginald Skinner, pleaded guilty to retaining on board their fishing vessel, Lula Bon PE892, a quantity of manila clams that measured below the minimum conservation reference size.  Charges were laid by the Southern Inshore Fisheries & Conservation Authority (Southern IFCA) and both men were ordered to pay costs and fines totalling £4,094.00.

The court heard how during the afternoon of Saturday 25th September 2021 Andrew Skinner was observed by officers from the Southern IFCA fishing from his vessel, Lula Bon PE892, in Poole Harbour. Lula Bon is jointly owned by Andrew Skinner and his father Reginald Skinner. Andrew Skinner returned to Poole Quay late in the afternoon to land his catch. The vessel’s fishing activity and return to the quayside was video recorded by officers using the Southern IFCA’s drone. This video footage was played in court.

On return to the quayside Andrew Skinner landed 16 sacks (approximately 500kg) of manila clams to a fish merchant who was purchasing the clams for £3 per kg. When Mr. Skinner landed his catch, he was intercepted by officers from the Southern IFCA and Dorset Police, who carried out a full inspection. Samples of clams were removed from 9 of the 16 sacks and measured for compliance with the Minimum Conservation Reference Size (Minimum Conservation Reference Sizes ensure sustainable fish stocks by considering the maturity of a species and allowing time for reproduction before removal from the sea). On average, 24% of Mr. Skinner’s catch measured below the Minimum Conservation Reference Size of 35mm.

As joint owners of the vessel both Andrew Skinner and Reginald Skinner were liable for the breach of regulations. Each were fined £800.00 and ordered to pay prosecution costs of £1,167.00 and a victim surcharge of £80.00.

When asked to comment, Deputy Chief Officer Sam Dell said, “This case sends out a clear message that not complying with the regulations will not be tolerated. The clam fishery in Poole Harbour is very important to the local commercial fishing industry.  Minimum size legislation is the principle management tool to protect clams within the Harbour and the taking of undersized shellfish undermines the purpose of such legislation and protection of juvenile stock. The Southern IFCA is committed to protecting our coastal fisheries, ensuring healthy seas and a viable industry. By taking offenders to court we aim to support a sustainable local fishery.”

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