ECHO gains 'National
Angling Alliance' support
June 2003 ECHO was delighted to confirm that The National Angling
Alliance (NAA) was to give its backing to us in our attempts to
change fishery legislation regarding the illegal importation of
carp and other coarse fish into the UK. Many coarse fish imported
from mainland Europe have been obtained illegally, and they are
able to act as carriers of potentially fatal diseases to which UK
fish have no immunity. The consequences can be - and have been -
widespread fish mortalities in fisheries where such fish have been
Ian Chillcott, ECHO Founder and Chairman said
"This is a huge and exciting step forward
in the battle against the flood of illegally imported fish that
threaten our sport. ECHO has always understood the need to link
angling with Governmental organisations and offer a united front
in order to achieve the sweeping changes requires to safeguard its
own future. To have gained the full backing of the NAA has forged
another crucial political link and we are delighted that they have
given us their support"
" ECHO has become a vitally important
link between anglers and Government bodies like CEFAS and the EA.
Now we also have the potential to air our views direct to the Government
through the Moran Committee and the NAA. This new link is provided
by the SAA and makes us a much more powerful voice in the political
In the next few months the NAA intends to place
the ECHO campaign on its agenda at meetings with key governmental
departments, English Nature and other influential organisations.
Members of the NAA are:
Angling Trade Association
National Association of Fisheries and Angling Consultatives
National Federation of Anglers
National Federation of Sea Anglers
Salmon & Trout association
Specialist Anglers Alliance
THE CEFAS INSPECTORATE
Centre for Environment Fisheries and Aquaculture Science
(CEFAS) is an agency of the Department for Environment Food and
Rural Affairs. CEFAS, through its Fish Health Inspectorate (FHI),
is responsible for the implementation of the European Union Fish
Health Regime and preventing the spread of serious fish disease
in England and Wales. The FHI is also responsible for the illegal
import of live fish into Great Britain.
Many consider that the increasing number of unexplained
fish mortalities in the UK are potentially the greatest threat to
indigenous fish and may result from the illegal import of fish carrying
disease in recent years. Illegal imports pose a significant threat
of serious fish disease outbreaks, which could threaten the future
of angling, the livelihoods of many fishery and fish owners, and
the destruction of millions of our native fish.
CEFAS works closely with the English carp Heritage
Organisation whose stated aim is to assist in preventing illegal
fish movements entering this country.
All imports of live fish must be accompanied by
a movement document attesting that the fish are healthy and free
from disease. The veterinary authorities in the country of origin
must sign the document, and prior notice of the movements sent to
CEFAS by importers. Imports, which fail to meet these criteria,
contravene the Fish Health regulations 1997.
By setting its principled and responsible example
ECHO is helping CEFAS to prevent the smuggling of live fish.
CEFAS needs the help of the industry and anglers
in its attempts to stop these offences.
Any information regarding suspicions of illegal
imports should be sent to the Investigations Inspector, CEFAS Laboratory,
Barrack Road, The Nothe, Weymouth, England. DT4 8UB or by email
Telephone - 01305 206681 or 01305 206673 (Main Office)
For further details on CEFAS and the work of the
FHI inspectors see
Alternatively details of suspicious fish movements
can be passed onto ECHO who will contact the relevant authorities.
THE SPECIALIST ANGLERS
represents single species groups, sports fishermen and recreational
fishing clubs. SAA promotes the establishment and maintenance of
marine and freshwater environments that are pollution free and conducive
to the growth and healthy life of fish and other organisms.
SAA advocates the protection of fish stocks and habitats; encourages
participation among people of all ages in the sport of fishing;
serves as a clearinghouse on fish records; functions as an umbrella
organisation linking organisations of anglers who specialise in
catching particular species of fish, assists in the maintenance
of the British Freshwater Fish Record Fish List run by BRFC. SAA
raises funds to assist in the protection of angling, rivers, stillwater
and other fish habitats.
Email us on Info@saauk.org
or view our website on www.saauk.org
The Environment Agency are the leading public body protecting and
protecting and improving the environment in England and Wales. Within
fisheries they are responsible for the regulation of inland and
coastal fisheries, from salmon nets, to anglers rod licenses.
The Environment Agency is responsible for evaluating
and consenting of all inland fish introductions and movements to
fisheries. All fish introductions and fish capture requires written
consent from the Agency prior to the activity taking place. The
Agency promotes a Buyer Beware policy to all fish movements, this
outlines the risks involved in fish introductions and promotes health
checking of all fish movements. All introductions of fish to "open
systems" by law require a health check to be carried out in
order to screen for Category 2 parasites and other fish diseases.
The Agency is responsible for the investigation of all wild fish
disease outbreaks and has had much involvement investigating unexplained
carp mortalities. The National Fisheries Laboratory at Brampton
are specifically geared up for fish health checking and disease
investigation and will provide fishery management advice to those
who submit fish to them for investigation. Full disease investigation
will include sampling for parasites, bacteria, viruses and fungi
and will also include histological sampling (fixing tissue and looking
at condition and pathologies at cell level.)
If you suspect illegal fish introductions are taking
place or you see evidence of a wild fish disease outbreak. Please
contact the Environment Agency emergency number:
0800 80 70 60
For further information on the role of the Environment