Report Your Sightings of Cormorants and Goosanders!

The Angling Trust, has launched a new web site for anglers to record sightings of cormorants, goosanders and mergansers throughout the UK: www.cormorantwatch.org The new site is easy to use and will gather vital data to help persuade government of the need for action to protect fisheries.

The Angling Trust succeeded in persuading the Fisheries Minister Richard Benyon to carry out a review of the licensing procedures and he has stated that he is prepared to take “bold decisions”.  As part of this review, the Trust needs data on the abundance of cormorants to convince the government to take decisive action.

Anglers can record sightings and activity of cormorants anywhere in the UK, directly onto a Google Maps driven micro-site at www.cormorantwatch.org Users will also be able to scroll around the map and zoom in to view details of each recorded cormorant sighting and watch the real picture of cormorant predation in UK waters build up week by week.

The Trust’s aim is to persuade DEFRA to simplify licensing procedures and allow greater controls on cormorant numbers. It is hoped that this data will also be factored into a wider pan European study on cormorants.

Angling Trust Chief executive Mark Lloyd commented “This is a moment when anglers need to stand up and be counted.  If people don’t record sightings of cormorants and other fish eating birds on this site, then the politicians and civil servants will not have the information they need to make decisions which could affect the future of fishing for the next generation.  It takes less than a minute to record a sighting.  All anglers who see one of these birds in the next few months must make the effort to visit cormorantwatch.org and put a pin in the map, whether they are a member of the Angling Trust or not.

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