Poole Harbour Dredge Permit
The Poole Harbour Dredge Permit Byelaw was introduced on 1 st July 2015 to replace the Fishery Order and manage the wild dredge fishery for shellfish. The byelaw permits the use of pump-scoop dredge gear within Poole Harbour and therefore manages the direct use of the fishing gear rather than a particular species, bringing together fishing for multiple species under a single management measure.
Permits are issued annually and, currently, 45 permits are issued each year. There is a Poole Harbour Dredge Permit Waiting List which was started in 2019 and operates to a maximum capacity of 10. Currently, the Waiting List is at maximum capacity and is therefore closed.
All vessels in the fishery are less than 9m in length and are small open vessels which carry out day fishing trips during periods of high water. The byelaw regulates a number of areas of the fishing operation including;
- Catch restrictions and reporting
- Gear types
- Gear construction and restrictions
- Spatial and temporal restrictions
- The fitting of specified equipment to vessels
The fishery is seasonal, running from 25 th May to 23 rd December each year. Outside of the season all dredge equipment must be removed from vessels. There are also additional seasonal restrictions on accessing certain areas within the Harbour which are identified as being important for national and international overwintering bird species. There is also a Poole Harbour Saltmarsh Protection Code of Practice in place to avoid disturbing breeding and roosting bird species and promote the protection of supporting habitats.
The fishery operates within the boundary of the Poole Harbour Special Protection Area (SPA), Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and Ramsar Site. The management for the fishery was developed in close consultation with Natural England and other organisations to ensure that the fishing methods are compatible with the conservation objectives of the site.
Poole Harbour Dredge Permit Access Policy
Poole Harbour Dredge Byelaw
Poole Harbour Dredge Permit Conditions
Poole Harbour Saltmarsh Protection Code of Practice