• Live Wrasse Fishery in Devon

    14 July 2017

    Dear Constituent

    Thank you for contacting me about the live wrasse fishery in Devon.

    Like you I am concerned to ensure that fish stocks in British waters remain sustainable, particularly within Marine Protected Areas. I therefore contacted the Devon and Severn Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority, the body responsible for managing these waters, to ask for its position on the fishery how it would ensure its sustainability. I am now in a position to share with you the key excerpts from its response.

    “Devon and Severn IFCA (Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority) is taking the lead in the South West to manage a developing fishery to ensure its sustainability and the protection of the marine environment.

    “Under careful management by the Devon and Severn IFCA, a short-term fishery based in the South West is providing a source of Wrasse, natural feeders of fish lice and parasites, to replace the use of chemical cleaners used on farmed salmon and provide a base breeding stock for hatcheries. It is envisaged that by 2019 there will be no further requirement to use wild caught fish as the hatcheries will sustainably supply the required Wrasse and other cleaners, such as lumpsuckers.

    “To achieve this and ensure that the fishery is sustainable and a healthy marine environment is maintained, Devon and Severn IFCA has introduced management, creating one of the most restrictive fisheries both nationally and the South West. Multiple management measures should ensure there will be no significant impact on the marine environment or wrasse populations. All three IFCAs in the SW are working closely together to harmonise management of the Live Wrasse Fishery.”

    I hope that this information will be useful to you and will set your mind at ease. Thank you again for taking the time to contact me.

    Yours sincerely


    Mel Stride

    MP for Central Devon

    Financial Secretary to the Treasury and Paymaster General