News 2014



14 February 2014
Widespread dredging could make flooding in some communities worse in future – not better – according to a new report published by The Chartered Institution of Water and Environmental Management (CIWEM) and endorsed by the Blueprint for Water coalition of environmental NGOs. Far from advocating dredging as a panacea, the report – published by independent flood management experts CIWEM, and backed by a range of organisations – suggests solely relying on dredging can even make some communities more vulnerable to the risk of flooding. Instead, the report’s authors call for leadership promoting sustainable measures to control flooding crises, rather than […]


26 February 2014
S&TA is a proud supporter World Fish Migration Day 2014, 24th May 2014, which is designed to create awareness of the importance of river connectivity and free migration to achieve healthy fish stocks. Local event worldwide currently include: – Excursions for citizens to rivers where dams have been removed, where fishways have been built; including coloring drawings for children (Spain, USA, Japan) – Releasing Pacific Lamprey by the Yakama Indian Tribe (USA) – Kayak and boat tours on a community river, to bring their citizen closer to their home river, (USA, Brazil) – Fish Passage Centers and Nature Musea opening […]


03 March 2014
The Salmon & Trout Association (Scotland) calls on Ministers to show leadership with decisive action in Wester Ross where lice numbers have been consistently over thresholds for a full year The latest aggregated sea lice data, published by the Scottish Salmon Producers Organisation (SSPO), shows that in the fourth quarter of 2013 sea lice numbers on farmed salmon were massively out of control in a number of areas. The latest SSPO quarterly sea lice report (for October to December) reveals that average lice numbers were over thresholds in 13 out of 30 areas for which data is reported by the […]


12 March 2014
Why you should – and how you can – respond S&TA urges you to participate in this once-in-a-generation opportunity to ensure that our precious water resources are properly and sustainably managed – simply by emailing Defra or filling in the online form (contact details below). Abstraction reform: why is it needed? The right to abstract water from rivers, reservoirs etc. in England and Wales was formally created by the Water Act of 1963. This was done with little or no consideration of what level of abstraction the body of water could actually sustain and this allocation has since proved to […]


13 March 2014
S&TA endorses report on risks posed by fracking and urges much stronger safeguards to protect fragile ecosystems The Salmon & Trout Association (S&TA) today joins with other leading countryside groups to launch "Are We Fit to Frack?" – an important report on the shale gas industry. It highlights a lack of regulation around shale gas exploitation and calls for much tighter controls on the industry. It contains ten key recommendations for making fracking safer as the Government continues with its push to get companies to apply for licences to explore and drill for shale gas. These include: all protected wildlife […]

Do you value your Scotland fishing?

14 March 2014
Then please participate in this important survey Dear Supporter, We would ask for your support in filling in an on-line questionnaire, which is designed to show the value to Scotland of angling. You can imagine how important this information is to us. The Scottish Country Sports Tourism Group (SCSTG), with support from Scottish Enterprise and Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) have commissioned Public & Corporate Economic Consultants (PACEC) to assess the economic impact of tourist* fishing on Scotland rivers and lochs, and the future growth prospects for the sector. *(A tourist is defined as someone who spends at least one night […]

Salmon and Trout Association (Scotland) welcomes Usan Salmon Fisheries Ltd’s decision not to net on Ythan

07 April 2014
The Salmon and Trout Association (Scotland) (S&TA(S)) has welcomed the announcement by Usan Salmon Fisheries Ltd, Scotland’s largest salmon netting company, not to exercise its recently acquired rights to net in the estuary of the River Ythan and on the adjacent coastline. Usan had issued a statement on 6 April: “After extensive deliberation, we have decided not to exercise our Ythan netting rights. We will, however, continue with our plans to exercise our angling rights, thereby retaining the associated local employment. We intend to fully consider the future options for our Ythan fishings in due course. For the avoidance of […]

S&TA welcomes new director of Riverfly Partnership

08 April 2014
The Riverfly Partnership (RP) has today announced that Ben Fitch is its new Director, tasked to expand and develop its important work of monitoring riverfly health – a key indicator of the whole river system’s overall good condition. The Salmon & Trout Association (S&TA) has hosted RP under its charitable objectives ever since its inception six years ago. One of its most important and successful initiatives is the development of the Anglers Monitoring Initiative (AMI) groups up and down the country. This is direct action in its most positive guise, with volunteer anglers trained to observe and identify 8 water […]

Controversial Wester Ross salmon farms at centre of planning confusion

08 April 2014
Highland Council not told of Scottish Government decision to withhold planning permission from fish-farms with very poor sea-lice records in Little Loch Broom Salmon & Trout Association (Scotland) calls for closure of the Ardessie B fish-farm and a thorough environmental assessment of Ardessie A, failing which that farm too must close Two salmon farms in Scotland with very poor sea-lice records are the centre of confusion as to whether or not they have planning permission to operate. A request made under freedom of information law has revealed that in 2009, Marine Scotland commissioned an audit of the environmental impact assessment […]


15 April 2014
A new report published today, Tuesday 15 April, on the environmental plans of water companies reveals a yawning gap between the best and worst performers in England and Wales. For the first time, plans from the 21 water companies in England and Wales are rated using a traffic light system across 10 environmental areas: from plans to tackle damage from water extraction, to those stopping raw sewage discharge into rivers and onto beaches. The Blueprint for Water coalition has found that three companies’ plans show real ambition, but no company is planning what they regard to be ‘good’ progress across […]

Netting catch of salmon in Scotland leaps by massive 50% in 2013. Scottish Government is presiding over “unrestricted wholesale slaughter”

30 April 2014
The number of salmon killed in nets in 2013 was 50% higher than in 2012 – according to the official Scottish Government figures released today. The 2013 summer drought caused very low flows in most rivers and thus salmon were simply unable to access their rivers of origin, forcing them to run the gauntlet of coastal nets for weeks on end. There are no quotas set for wild salmon and consequently there is no mechanism to limit catches – whatever the strength or weakness of local populations. The 2013 net catch of 24,311 salmon compares with 16,230 in 2012 and […]


06 May 2014
Government plans to allow fracking companies to drill under people’s homes without their permission are set to run into widespread opposition as a major new poll reveals three quarters (74%) of British people are against the move. Nearly three quarters of Tory (73%) and Lib Dem (70%) potential voters hold the view that energy companies should have to get permission from owners or residents before drilling for gas under their homes or land, a YouGov survey published today reveals. Only 13% of respondents said energy firms should not be required to have this consent. The results are published on the […]


12 May 2014
S&TA and HIWWT hail this important development to help restore river’s former pristine status Salmon and Trout Association (S&TA) and Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust (HIWWT) welcome the Environment Agency’s (EA) decision to issue revised permits covering discharges from watercress farms on the River Itchen. This is a vital first step towards cutting the levels of Phosphate pollution in the river Itchen, which significantly impacts both the condition of the river and the wildlife habitats it provides. [1]   Excess phosphate in the river acts as a fertiliser, encouraging unnaturally vigorous growth of both suspended algae, which discolours […]


09 June 2014
Fish-farm sea lice out of control at the worst possible time for migrating juvenile wild salmon and sea-trout Conservation body calls for decisive action The latest aggregated sea lice data, published by the Scottish Salmon Producers Organisation (SSPO), shows that in the first quarter of 2014, sea lice numbers on farmed salmon were still out of control in a number of regions. Worryingly, the second quarter of every year is when the main migrations to sea of juvenile wild salmon and sea-trout occur. During this period they are at their most vulnerable to damaging and often fatal infestations of sea […]


13 June 2014
The Salmon and Trout Association (Scotland) has submitted a formal complaint to Europe over the Scottish Government’s failure to comply with European law which aims to protect Atlantic salmon populations in Scottish rivers designated as Special Areas of Conservation under the Habitats Directive. The lack of progress was graphically exposed during last week’s Thirty-First Annual Meeting of the North Atlantic Salmon Conservation Organisation (NASCO) in Saint-Malo, France. The meeting heard that coastal salmon netting is actually increasing in Scotland and that, in stark contrast to almost all other Atlantic salmon producing nations, it has almost no management regime in place […]


16 June 2014
The Netherlands, May 24, 2014 On May 24th 2014, local community events will be taking place at 250 locations worldwide to celebrate the first World Fish Migration Day. WWF (NL), The Nature Conservancy (USA), the IUCN SSC/Wetlands International Freshwater Fish Specialist Group and Wanningen Water Consult with LINKit consult have come together to promote greater awareness of the global importance of freshwater migratory fish and free flowing rivers. With the help of over 150 organisations, celebrations and events have been organised for World Fish Migration Day. Events commence in New Zealand and, following the sun, finish as it sets in […]

Calling all aspiring film-makers (of any age)!

22 July 2014
SALMON & TROUT ASSOCIATION INTRODUCES INNOVATIVE ENVIRONMENTAL FILM AWARD: "THE INVISIBLE WORLD" Leading wildlife film-makers to judge entries. £2,000 for winning entry Leading wildlife film-makers to judge entries. £2,000 for winning entry The Salmon & Trout Association (S&TA), a leading environmental charity, invites entries from film-makers whose original videos highlight the wildlife, the beauty and the threats to the UK&#39s freshwater world. Open to all British residents of any age, amateur or professional, entries will be judged by a distinguished panel of film-makers and conservationists which includes wildlife film-maker Charlie Hamilton James; Paul Reddish, producer of many films for the […]

New onshore licensing round opens – Joint response

29 July 2014
The Salmon and Trout Association, National Trust, RSPB, The Wildlife Trusts and the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust and The Angling Trust, earlier this year published a major review of the risks that shale gas extraction (‘fracking’) could pose in the UK and put forward ten recommendations to address these risks. Our review concluded that fracking poses a range of significant risks to the natural environment. Given these risks, and the high level of uncertainty about them, we called for special areas that are particularly sensitive to be protected outright from development. This would best be achieved by not licensing or […]

Wild Salmon Stocks Crash – Angling and Fisheries Organisations Call for Urgent Government Action

01 August 2014
Following official figures showing the worst estimates of salmon stocks on record, a coalition of concerned angling, fisheries and conservation groups has written to Government Fisheries Minister George Eustice and to his counterpart Edwina Hart in the Welsh Assembly Government, to demand urgent implementation of a five point action plan to halt the sharp decline in salmon stocks in England and Wales. The Salmon & Trout Association, Angling Cymru, Afonydd Cymru, Atlantic Salmon Trust, Fish Legal, The Rivers Trust, and The Angling Trust have urged the Government to take the five remedial actions that are urgently needed to restore stocks […]

Opposition to Off Shore Fish Farming in South West England Grows

04 August 2014
The Salmon & Trout Association (S&TA), the Angling Trust and Fish Legal have written to the Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquatic Science (CEFAS) to express their concerns over a draft proposal to farm rainbow trout off the shores of the South West of England. From experience from fish farming elsewhere in the UK, these organisations feel that there is a significant risk of damage to wild fisheries and recreational angling from: • infestations of sea lice: fish farming in Scotland has led to widespread infestations of wild salmon and sea trout with this parasite which literally eats fish alive […]

Conservation organisation calls on Scottish Ministers to act now to limit salmon exploitation in response to the worst runs in decades

14 August 2014
The Salmon and & Trout Association (Scotland) is appealing to Scottish Ministers to encourage maximum restraint in any exploitation of salmon in the next few months. The appeal is in response to this year’s very poor runs of salmon, which so far in 2014 are believed by many to be the worst in living memory. The evidence for this is from angling catches, in-river netting catches and fish counters across most of Scotland. Thus the provisional number of fish recorded at the counter on the River North Esk (Scotland’s most closely monitored river) to the end of July is just […]

Catastrophe of salmon farm ‘sea-lice soup’ hits juvenile salmon and sea-trout across huge area of the west coast and western isles

18 August 2014
S&TA(S) congratulates local council for principled planning decisions to safeguard wild salmon and sea-trout but castigates Minister for allowing wild salmon catastrophe to continue on his watch At the worst possible time of year for wild fish, yet again industry figures show sea-lice have been out of control at many Scottish salmon farms. The latest aggregated sea lice data, published by the Scottish Salmon Producers Organisation (SSPO) (Note 1), shows that in the second quarter of 2014, sea lice numbers on farmed salmon were still out of control in almost half the thirty regions for which data is reported by […]

Have Your Say! Abstraction Reform Digital Dialogues Now Open.

04 September 2014
Abstraction is one of the major issues facing the management of our waterways – and YOU can make sure that the proposed Abstraction Reforms truly are sustainable. Here’s how: Two online discussions will be running for three weeks from Friday 5th September up until 26th September 2014. Does your river get much of its flow from water company discharges? Have you ever been affected by a drought? Then you should want to have your say in these discussions on: Managing water company discharges Abstraction reform and drought The discussions go live Friday at 12pm but you can register now: You […]

Environmental and Waterways groups welcome go ahead for Thames super sewer

14 September 2014
Environmental charities and amenity groups representing over 5 million people who have been campaigning for a cleaner Thames in London have welcomed the decision of the government to go ahead with the long awaited and much needed Thames Tideway Tunnel. The Thames Tunnel Now (TTN) coalition comprising national and local organisations – including S&TA, RSPB, WWF, London Wildlife Trust, Thames21, River Thames Society and angling and boating groups – has been calling since 2011 for the construction of a new tunnel under the Thames to stop tens of millions of tonnes of sewage overflowing into London’s river each year through […]


10 October 2014
S&TA urges action to support Blueprint “Save Our Waters” Campaign Today sees the launch of the “Save Our Waters” campaign, designed by the Blueprint for Water coalition to ensure that the voices of all who care about our rivers and waterways are heard at the highest level. The campaign’s launch coincides with the publication of the Environment Agency’s 2nd cycle draft River Management Basin Plans (dRMBP), 2015 – 2021, which in essence will determine how our rivers, lakes, estuaries, beaches and wetlands, are managed over the next six years. The Blueprint for Water coalition, the influential consortium of environmental NGOs […]

The Wild Fisheries Review: Changing of the guard

11 November 2014
The Wild Fisheries Review, commissioned by Scottish Government, was published in October, following extensive consultation by the Chairman Andrew Thin and his team. Read more

Angling and Fisheries Organisations Welcome Abandonment of Cornish Fish Farm Plan

26 November 2014
Angling and fisheries organisations are celebrating news that plans for a fish farm off the Cornish coast have been abandoned. This follows robust criticism of the initiative, which would have posed serious threats to salmon, sea trout and marine fish stocks. The idea, promoted by the Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (CEFAS), a Government agency, was to grow rainbow trout in an open net cage unit. This would have been a similar system operated by the salmon farming industry off the west coast and Islands of Scotland, which has caused significant damage to wild salmon and sea trout, […]

Salmon & Trout Association (S&TA) and Afonydd Cymru ‘two cheers’ for Natural Resources Wales’s decision to phase out the use of cypermethrin in Welsh Government forestry

26 November 2014
Responding to the outcome of the NRW’s Review of the Use of Cypermethrin in Forestry (1), the Salmon & Trout Association and Afonydd Cymru have broadly welcomed the environmental body for Wales, Natural Resources Wales, decision to end the use of cypermethrin in forestry by 2017. While even three years of continuing use of the highly toxic pesticide, cypermethrin, in the Welsh Government Woodland Estate (formerly, the Forestry Commission Wales) is regrettable, we are pleased that the original plans for five years further use, as reflected in the application made for a further derogation to the Forestry Stewardship Council earlier […]


02 December 2014
Potentially impassable barrier for migrating salmon is a key concern As if the proposed siting of this £3b wind farm project opposite the World Heritage Site off Dorset’s Jurassic Coast were not enough, its construction and location has the potential to affect detrimentally the salmon and sea trout populations from the rivers Test, Itchen, Avon, Stour, Frome and Piddle. The welfare of the migratory fish populations in all of these rivers is at stake, claims the Salmon & Trout Association (S&TA), Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust (GWCT), Wessex Chalk Stream and Rivers Trust (WCSRT), Test & Itchen Association and Test […]

Salmon & Trout Association Scotland (S&TA(S)) welcomes Scottish Government announcement that it will consult on a pioneering conservation measure to ban the killing of wild salmon except under licence

05 December 2014
The Salmon & Trout Association Scotland (S&TA(S)) welcomes Scottish Government’s announcement today that it will consult imminently on the introduction of a ban on the killing of wild salmon except under licence in order to ensure that “any killing of salmon is sustainable”. Hugh Campbell Adamson, Chairman of S&TA(S), said: “We warmly welcome this bold move by Scottish Government. This announcement signals an acknowledgment and confirmation by Government that our wild salmon stocks are under considerable pressure and that they need as much protection as possible from indiscriminate killing. “If this proposal is adopted and a licensing system is introduced […]

S&TA(S) launches petition to stop all killing of wild salmon before 1st July for five years

16 December 2014
The Salmon and Trout Association (Scotland) (S&TA(S)), in conjunction with leading angling guide and consultant Ian Gordon, has today launched an online petition aimed at preventing any killing of wild salmon in Scotland before 1st July for the next five years. This follows two years of poor salmon runs and reflects an increasing appreciation that decisive action is required to help arrest the decline. In 2013 6,563 salmon were killed before 1st July – of which over two thirds were taken by nets. The public petition, which is hosted on the Scottish Parliament’s website, also calls for an end to […]