CATCH AND RELEASE AT RECORD HIGH
Anglers are increasingly heeding calls to operate a catch and release policy, according to the latest figures released by Marine Scotland today, helping to support vulnerable stocks.The figures show that the total rod catch for salmon was the highest on record, with 110,496 salmon and grilse caught. This is an increase of 31 per cent on the previous five year average.Of these, 70 per cent were caught and released, with this figure rising to 86 per cent for spring salmon.
There were 27,704 sea trout caught in 2010, 34 per cent higher than the previous five year average. Of these, 72 per cent were caught and released.
Rural Affairs Secretary Richard Lochhead said:
"I am delighted that 2010 produced the highest rod catches of salmon in Scotland ever recorded. These figures come on the back of some successful years, although we must remember that salmon numbers can be affected by many factors. These results illustrate the commitment of many anglers on our salmon rivers to forward looking management.
"That said anglers, by again increasing the percentage of fish that they release, are to be congratulated for playing their part. By releasing 70 per cent of their catch they continue to contribute greatly to the quality of angling opportunity available to themselves and their fellow anglers.
"This government has pledged to continue to support the modernisation of fisheries management in Scotland to enable it to develop as a valued economic driver for the country as a whole - and our rural communities in particular - and we look forward to continuing to work with the sector to achieve this."