Sea trout stocks at their worst ever levels in Wales

National Resources Wales have warned that sea trout and salmon stocks are at their worst levels on record and there is a trend of ongoing decline. Some angling clubs in Wales are responding by encouraging catch and release to preserve stocks as every spawning fish matters’.

The full announcement from NRW is below. 
You can download the reports for sea trout and salmon here: sea trout; salmon.

Sea trout stock performance in Wales 2018
Sea trout stock performance in Wales 2018


New stock assessments for salmon and sea trout in Wales have just been published. The evidence, based on fish catches in 2018, indicate that stocks are now performing at their worst levels on record.

All salmon stocks and about half of our sea trout stocks are below safe biological levels and at risk of on going decline.

The new assessments are of great concern and indicate a deeply worrying trend of on going decline. We all want to improve stocks, and much work is underway by NRW, Afonydd Cymru and the rivers trusts and others to achieve this. Some of the issues are very difficult to resolve, notably the record low levels of survival of salmon during the marine phase of their life cycle. However closer to home we can resolve issues that are damaging rivers and our fish and it is essential that we all focus on these.”

NRW is: -

• Working with WG on a new more protective régime for agriculture

• Commissioning a set of plans for the restoration of river habitats

• Considering a report from its external advisory group on fish-eating birds and its recommendation for a policy review by WG.

It’s important to note that increases in spawning stocks as a result of these and other initiatives are particularly valuable when stocks are at low levels. Even relatively small numbers of fish are crucial to recover stocks in as short a time as possible. Every spawning fish matters.

In the meantime, NRW awaits the outcome of the Local Inquiry into new fishing controls, and a decision on our application for new byelaws by the WG Minister.

Click this link to the NRW website for information about how salmon and sea trout stocks are assessed by them. 

For more information about sea trout, click here