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Killer Shrimp Found In Norfolk Broads – Angling Trust Response

14.03.12

Killer Shrimp on Welly

The Angling Trust is calling on the government to start taking bio-security issues far more seriously following news released this morning that the Killer Shrimp (Dikerogammarus villosus) has been found in Barton Broad, Norfolk.

A Trust spokesman described this news as a devastating blow for anglers who had hoped that the spread had been contained at Grafham Water in England and 2 sites in South Wales. This highly invasive non-native shrimp originates in the Caspian Region and has spread to other European countries. It predates on native aquatic insect life and fish eggs and could have a major impact on fish stocks and other wildlife. The Angling Trust has been working hard with government and other users of the water environment to encourage bio-security measures across all sectors to prevent another incident occurring, this new discovery is very unwelcome news after all this work.

Only last week, the Angling Trust included a stark warning to MPs about the potential impact of the spread of the Killer Shrimp on wildlife, fisheries and angling when the Trust’s senior staff gave evidence to the Environmental Audit Select Committee on Wildlife Crime.

Mark Lloyd said: “We do not know how the Killer Shrimp was spread to Barton Broad and we will be continuing to ask all water users, including anglers, to follow the ‘Check Clean Dry’ procedures to stop it spreading further. In an open system like the Broads with thousands of visitors a day this will be a huge task and we will be meeting with the Broads Authority to discuss ways of doing this. There is now a very real danger that this pest could be spread throughout the country with disastrous consequences for fish, fishing and a host of wildlife.”

The Angling Trust’s Freshwater Environmental Campaigns Manager Mark Owen added: “The government needs to wake up to the huge threat to our waters from invasive species from Europe the Killer Shrimp is only the tip of the ice berg. We call on government to ratify urgently the Ballast Convention to stop these species being moved by shipping and to take a lead in forcing European countries to take action by backing a new European Directive on Invasive Non Native Species”.

ENDS

NOTE TO EDITORS

1. The Killer Shrimp (Dikerogammarus villosus)

More information about the Shrimp and a downloadable ID guide as part of the Angling Trust’s online guide to aquatic invasive non-native species HERE

2. Ballast Convention

In response to the threats posed by invasive species, the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (Rio de Janeiro 1992) called on the International Maritime Organisation and other international bodies to take action to address the transfer of harmful organisms by ship. In response the International Convention for the Control and Management of Ships Ballast Water & Sediments was adopted by consensus at a Diplomatic Conference in London on Friday 13 February 2004. This has still not been ratified by the UK Government.

3. The Angling Trust

The Angling Trust is the representative body for all forms of recreational angling in England, with 14,500 individual members and 1,550 club members, representing more than 400,000 anglers.

Contact: Angling Trust Eastwood House, 6 Rainbow Street, Leominster, Herefordshire HR6 8DQ
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Angling Trust Limited is a company limited by guarantee, company number 05320350

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