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Thread: Des Taylor Otter Petition

  1. #21
    Frequent User fishy_fingers's Avatar
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    If you fancy a read this is the Government's response....

    The Government has responded to the petition you signed – “For the introduction of non-lethal means of control of the Otter (Lutra- lutra)”.

    Government responded:

    While the Government understand concerns raised about the impact otters may have on fish populations, they are a protected species and there are no plans to introduce methods to control their numbers

    The Government understands that there are concerns that otters may have adverse impacts on fish populations and wildlife more generally but we do not accept that the otter ‘has become a detriment to the river environment’.

    Mainly as a result of the banning of certain pesticides, otters are now once more present in each county in England. They are an important indicator of the great strides we have made in improving our waterways, with more than 5,300 miles of rivers being improved since 2010. There have been no reintroductions of otters by conservation groups since the late 1990s and the bulk of the recovery of the otter has been through natural re-colonisation.

    A healthy otter population results from favourable conditions in the natural environment, including water quality and the availability of prey (including fish), as well as availability of breeding sites. Otters are found at low density, and limit their own populations through territorial activity. Carrying capacity is determined by environmental conditions.

    There is no evidence to suggest that otters have a major impact on wildlife as a whole, and although localised impacts could occur where otters have not been previously present for some time, they are a natural part of the freshwater ecosystem and we believe these systems will adapt to the return of the natural top predator.

    We do recognise that otters can in some instances impact on still water fisheries, which is why there is provision through the Angling Improvement Fund (AIF), administered by the Angling Trust on the Environment Agency’s behalf, to help deliver improvements including projects to protect fisheries from otter predation through the erection of otter-proof fencing. Further information can be found on the Angling Trust website at: www.anglingtrust.net.

    Otters are a protected species and it is an offence to harm capture, kill, disturb or injure any animal and/or damage, destroy or obstruct their resting or sheltering places. Therefore any methods of control, including non-lethal methods, would constitute an offence. A licence may be granted by Natural England to catch and move an otter trapped inside a suitably otter-proof fenced fishery to prevent loss of fish stocks.

    Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
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  2. #22
    Platinum jeames's Avatar
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    Basically..


    We can f off !!

    Otters are here to stay...and kill whatever they want
    thank your mother for the rabbits...

    rex hunt

  3. #23
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    I think it's the response we all expected but to get a response was a good result.

    It may even encourage more voices to be raised with this subject in mind. It is those that go fishing at the venues that have no option to fence their venue that I feel for. Having been a victim myself, I will not be fishing anywhere without a fence for the foreseeable.
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    In relation to the first couple of lines of the last paragraph from the government’s response, the first test case will be interesting... I find it unlikely we will ever see it...

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Boycie04 View Post
    That's not correct. Anyone can apply for a licence, there's no stipulation that the water has to be fenced. Admittedly it's not been tested yet and there's no guarantee that one would be granted but until people start applying and testing the system then we'll never know how easy it will be.
    I don't know who told you this but they're wrong.

    Having just fenced my own lakes I'm now aware that there are several restrictions that Natural England imposes. One of them is that the water must have an otter fence; moreover it has to be of a certain minimum standard in height and mesh size.

    Additionally there must be firm evidence that an otter is inside the fence. Then the trapping must be done by someone trained in the use of the traps. Finally, the otter can't be re-located, but has to be released just on the other side of the fence.

    One of the reasons that only a few licences have been issued is down to the restriction that an approved otter fence must be in place. However, only a relatively small proportion of waters have been fenced at present. Then hopefully these fences have been effective and so no trap licence is required anyway.

  6. #26
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    otter3 (2).jpg
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  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Burke View Post
    I don't know who told you this but they're wrong.

    Having just fenced my own lakes I'm now aware that there are several restrictions that Natural England imposes. One of them is that the water must have an otter fence; moreover it has to be of a certain minimum standard in height and mesh size.

    Additionally there must be firm evidence that an otter is inside the fence. Then the trapping must be done by someone trained in the use of the traps. Finally, the otter can't be re-located, but has to be released just on the other side of the fence.

    One of the reasons that only a few licences have been issued is down to the restriction that an approved otter fence must be in place. However, only a relatively small proportion of waters have been fenced at present. Then hopefully these fences have been effective and so no trap licence is required anyway.
    I work for Natural England, admittedly not in the department dealing with licence applications but I have colleagues who do. The current 'licence' is for fenced waters but there's nothing stopping owners of a non-fenced water from applying, I heard that directly from PAG.

    The current licence is only for fenced waters, agreed, but owners of non-fenced waters are being encouraged to apply in order to raise the issue. I'm not suggesting that NE will necessarily grant a licence.

  8. #28
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  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Boycie04 View Post
    I work for Natural England, admittedly not in the department dealing with licence applications but I have colleagues who do. The current 'licence' is for fenced waters but there's nothing stopping owners of a non-fenced water from applying, I heard that directly from PAG.

    The current licence is only for fenced waters, agreed, but owners of non-fenced waters are being encouraged to apply in order to raise the issue. I'm not suggesting that NE will necessarily grant a licence.
    Thanks for that, Boycie.

    There may be a practical problem here though. As otters can be released only just on the other side of the fence, if there's no fence where can they be released?

    It wouldn't do to relocate them as that would be just as bad as unauthorised reintroductions.

  10. #30
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    Steve B is bang on. Currently the trapping regulations do only apply to properly fenced waters and require a licensed trapper.

    As an aside; if you are going to fence a water then make the effort to do it properly. A water adjacent to me has just lost a number of decent fish. The otter(s) got through A hole in a chicken wire fence that was probably initially made by a badger.....Moral of the story: build a decent fence and then check it regularly.

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