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Fishing group allegedly plans to introduce non-native fish to western waters


Anton McNulty

INLAND Fisheries Ireland have said they are aware of plans by fishermen from the UK and Ireland to introduce non-native species of fish into lakes around the west of Ireland including Lough Mask and Lough Conn.
An angling website last week claimed that fishermen plan to introduce three species of non-native fish into western waterways that have been designated for brown trout fisheries.
It has been reported that the post on the Irish Pike Society Facebook page states that the group plans to release the fish in the next fortnight into rivers and lakes which are considered some of the best locations for trout and salmon fishing.
The post, which has since been removed, stated: “A group of lads from the UK and Ireland have collaborated together and are intending to introduce chub, barbel and catfish in the various rivers and lakes on the west coast, including the Corrib, Mask, Conn, Clare River, Robe River and the Moy with fish to arrive as early as the next fortnight”.
Many anglers in the west of Ireland want to keep the waterways free of pike and other species in favour of salmon and trout but others feel discriminated against by advocates of salmon and trout.
Inland Fisheries Ireland said they were aware of the post and were monitoring the situation.
“Inland Fisheries Ireland is always monitoring the resource to ensure protection against invasive species. Inland Fisheries Ireland has a confidential hotline number to enable members of the public to report incidents and this phone line is designed to encourage the reporting of incidents of illegal fishing, water pollution and invasive species,” they said.