Nith District Salmon Fishery Board
River Nith
Nith Catchment Fishery Trust
Nith District Salmon Fishery Board
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  • Following the announcement by Scottish Government (“SG”) of the 2017 conservation categories for all Scottish rivers, the Nith System was designated Cat 3. For 2017, the effect of which in short would have been 100% catch and release of salmon within the system.
  • Nith Board and Trust lodged a successful appeal and the categorisation was elevated to Cat 2 being defined by SG as “60-80% mean probability of CL being met in the last 5 years (2011-2015).  Management action is necessary to reduce exploitation; mandatory catch and release will not be required in the first instance, but this will be reviewed annually.” The Board’s appeal took the geographical majority of the Nith System into Cat 2 by 0.6 of one percent of the measurable thresholds and criteria used by Marine Scotland to establish their river categorisations throughout Scotland, although parts of the estuary fisheries remain in Cat 3.
  • SG informed the Nith Fishery Director (“FD”) of its decision to elevate the Nith system categorisation but requested that the Board did not publicise the details until the Minister had made the announcement.
  • Mention was made by SG officials of the intention to limit the Cat 2 area to in-river fisheries and FD requested the Cat 2 boundaries be notified to the Board in writing before issuing this bulletin on the change in category status. FD received confirmation of the lower geographical limits of the Cat 2 area on Friday 9th December, from which it can be established that SG appear to have come to the conclusion that most of the Haaf netting effort is conducted in the Nith estuary out with and downstream of the Cat 2 area.
  • NDSFB Conservation Sub Committee convened a meeting on Thursday 8th December to consider the implications of the Cat 2 and Cat 3 designations and the reported position adopted by SG that to comply with the Cat 2 designation “Management action is necessary to reduce exploitation”. The Conservation Committee considered a number of management options and is to report to the Board at the meeting on December 20th for further consideration.
  • Publicity broke on the re categorisation of the Nith and the local papers requested a statement Friday 9th December D&G Standard and information on the change in category status was given.
  • NDSFB is to consider the matter at its next meeting Tuesday 20th December.
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