Morecambe Bay Seed Mussel Fisheries
Following discussion and approval by NWIFCA Technical Science and Byelaws Sub-committee (TSB) there are a number of potential seed mussel fisheries within Morecambe Bay. Fisheries are dependent of the stock being putting down significant mud, becoming very loose, in imminent risk of being washed away, and are subject to HRA.
The potential fisheries are:
- A permitted dredge fishery at Perch and Black Scar, Fleetwood.
- An authorised NWIFCA byelaw 3 hand gathered fishery at Heysham Flat, Morecambe.
- An authorised NWIFCA byelaw 3 hand gathered and permitted dredge fishery at South America mussel bed, North Morecambe Bay.
- A permitted dredge fishery at Falklands mussel bed, North Morecambe Bay.
Seed mussel in Morecambe Bay have a history of settling densely, growing rapidly, becoming unstable and washing away through natural processes in a matter of weeks. Officers continue to monitor the stock and providing the mussel puts down sufficient mud to ensure protection of the cobble substrate from hand gathering and dredging and the mussel is in imminent risk of being washed away, the Authority will issue an authorisation to all NWIFCA byelaw 3 permit holders to take seed by hand and issue permits to dredge in accordance with the ‘NWIFCA Restrictions on the Use of a Dredge Byelaw 2017’.
Due to the speed at which events can occur, applications for dredge permits are invited now and can be downloaded below or obtained from the office by emailing [email protected]. Payment will not be taken until the stock is in the condition described above and a HRA has been completed and advice received from Natural England. Please complete and return both forms. Once the fishery is approved payment will be required prior to the issuing of permits.
There is no requirement for Byelaw 3 permit holders to apply for an authorisation as one authorisation will be produced for all Byelaw 3 permit holders.