What else can be done to address the decline of sea trout stocks?
Basically, stop killing so many sea trout and act now to restore and protect their habitat. Fishery owners and managers, fishery boards, trusts etc have to decide whether there is a harvestable surplus in their waters and regulate fisheries accordingly. Control of exploitation by nets and catch and release by anglers can make a substantial difference to fish size, abundance and population fecundity in future generations. Government environmental agencies now have stronger powers, through the E.U. Habitats and Water Framework Directives, to mitigate many environmental problems. Even so, the continuing growth in human numbers, aspirations and social expectations seriously threaten the future quality and quantity of fresh water. Nor can anyone predict with certainty how precious freshwater and marine resources will be affected by ever-changing climatic conditions. Sea trout stocks provide a very important economic and social asset. Their status is a sensitive barometer of the continuing health of the arterial systems of our rivers and our coastal seas. We are urgently in need of more research directed towards sensitive and well-informed measures to assist in their conservation and fishery management.