Publication - Consultation responses

2014 Consultation on the management of inshore Special Areas of Conservation and Marine Protected Areas - Consultation analysis report

Published: 10 Jul 2015
Part of:
Marine and fisheries
ISBN:
9781785444890

2014 Consultation on the management of inshore Special Areas of Conservation and Marine Protected Areas - Consultation analysis report. Summary of the responses received relating to each site.

236 page PDF

11.9 MB

236 page PDF

11.9 MB

Contents
2014 Consultation on the management of inshore Special Areas of Conservation and Marine Protected Areas - Consultation analysis report
14. Noss Head MPA

236 page PDF

11.9 MB

14. Noss Head MPA

14.1. Introduction

14.1.1. Noss Head was designated to protect its horse mussel beds. One management approach was presented; this would prohibit the use of demersal trawls, mechanical dredge, or suction dredges (boat or diver operated) throughout the MPA.

14.2. We Asked

14.2.1. The consultation asked: 'Do you support the management approach for this protected area?'

14.2.2. The consultation also asked 'Do you agree with the economic, social, and environmental assessments of the impact of the management approaches?'

14.3. You Said

14.3.1. Table 14.1 summarises the responses received.

14.3.2. Twenty-seven out of 28 respondents giving a direct answer supported the management approach. One local group answered 'no' and did not make any additional comments. One static fishing respondent simply stated "we support proportionate conservation measures with minimum impact on commercial fisheries" without answering either 'yes' or 'no' and this response is shown in the 'other comments' column in the table below.

Table 14.1: Noss Head MPA - Support for management approach

Yes

No

Other comments

No reply

Individuals (133)

7

-

-

126

Environment / Conservation (17)

10

-

-

7

Inshore Fisheries Group (IFG) (3)

-

-

-

3

Industry / Transport (6)

-

-

-

6

Mobile fishing (8)

3

-

-

5

Local authority (3)

1

-

-

2

Local group (7)

1

1

-

5

Recreation / Tourism (13)

2

-

-

11

Static fishing (4)

3

-

1

-

Other (2)

-

-

-

2

Total (196)

27

1

1

167

14.3.3. Fifteen of the respondents who answered 'yes' went on to add comments. The main theme in these comments was outright support for prohibiting the use of demersal trawls, mechanical dredge, or suction dredges throughout the MPA.

14.3.4. Other comments included:

  • That the approach meets the conservation objectives of the MPA.
  • A static fishing respondent commented that the interests of creel fishermen, commercial divers, and the communities from where they operate should be given full consideration and that allowing mobile activity would be too far in favour of the mobile sector.
  • A local authority commented that that there is currently limited fishing pressure in this area and that "this sets a useful precedent for management of other areas where the approach has been to say that there is currently little fishing pressure so restrictions are not necessary".
  • An individual suggested that compliance "will be the issue".

14.3.5. Eight respondents from the local authority, environment /conservation, mobile fishing, static fishing and individuals groups answered 'yes' in response to whether they agreed with the economic, social, and environmental assessments of the impact of the management approaches.

14.3.6. One environment /conservation respondent that answered in the affirmative added: "However, we are concerned about the dredge disposal site located to the south west side of the MPA and seek assurance that the boundary of the MPA has been demarcated with a sufficient buffer between the disposal site and the horse mussel bed, or that the disposal site could be moved further away. Additionally we are concerned about the impacts of the submarine power cable, which runs through the MPA and was consented prior to its designation. We seek clarification as to how any potential impacts from the cable or maintenance activities will be mitigated to protect the horse mussel bed." Another environment /conservation respondent that answered neither 'yes' or 'no' expressed similar concerns.

14.3.7. Three environment /conservation respondents, two local groups and a mobile fishing respondent answered 'no'. Two of the environment /conservation respondents went on to comment that the assessment has failed to consider the benefits that the proposed measures may bring to the area over time. Another suggested a need to assess use of static gear in the site and consider precautionary safeguards against any increase in effort or scale of static gear use in future.

14.3.8. The mobile fishing respondent that answered 'no' noted that the environmental report on management measures was not available at the beginning of the public consultation. Two other respondents in the mobile fishing group that had not answered 'yes' or 'no' also commented on lack of time to review the environmental report as well as referring to queries raised over the relevance and completeness of data provided in the economic and social assessments.

14.4. We Did

14.4.1. Please see broad issues section regarding the environmental report.

14.4.2. The Scottish Government welcomes the broad support for the proposed measures. Matters relating to marine licensing issues have been passed to the relevant authorities.

14.4.3. The current Sinclair Bay mobile gear closure, which the MPA partially overlaps, will be revoked and replaced. The new area will include the Sinclair Bay closure and the remaining part of the MPA that lies outwith.

14.4.4. We intend to implement the following measures by an Order under the Inshore Fishing (Scotland) Act 1984;

  • To prohibit the use of the following fishing gears - suction dredge, mechanical dredge, beam trawl, and demersal trawl.

14.4.5. The measures and their ecological value are shown in appendix 14.


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