Poaching of bass has become a big problem in the East Cork area and Cork Harbour area over the last 12 months. In November there were reputed landings of over 40 boxes of bass on one occasion and 17 boxes on another in East Cork. In the Harbour there have several reported landings of between 4 and 6 boxes of bass at a time. This illegal activity has the potential to deplete the bass stocks and totally undermine the tourist angling industry in the area.
Members of the Cork Harbour Angling Hub have invested a lot of money in developing the tourist angling product and promoting this product both at home and abroad. Interest in bass angling in particular has grown dramatically as a result of this work. Unfortunately, the damage to stock levels caused by the illegal activity has the potential to undermine all this and seriously impact angling tourism in the area. This is why the work of IFI recently has been most welcome.
IFI are committed to tackling the problem and upholding their statutory obligation to protect stocks. As the problem of illegal fishing has reached alarming proportions IFI have now set up a dedicated bass protection unit for the East Cork & Harbour area. Lets hope their efforts reap further success and that this fishery now gets the protection it deserves. Well done to all involved!