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Letter: Shad news

YOUR INTERESTING article about fishing for shad (Fishing Lines, Sport, 6 June) ended with a debate about which type of rod licence is needed. The answer is very simple - no licence is required. Both species of shad are classed as sea fish and are, therefore, not covered by the Salmon & Freshwater Fisheries Act 1975. This means that the Environment Agency has no powers to license fishing for shad or to regulate shad fisheries.

However, that should not imply that we are not concerned about protecting these fascinating species. Both are protected under national and European law and international convention. It is an offence to kill intentionally, injure or take the rarer Allis Shad, although fishing for Twaite Shad is allowed.

The Environment Agency recognises the lack of powers to regulate fishing for shad and has recommended to the group currently reviewing freshwater fisheries legislation that we be given this responsibility.


Environment Agency, Bristol