UK Environment Agency confiscates 52 illegal fishing traps in East Anglia during pandemic

An Environment Agency fisheries enforcement officer with some confiscated illegal traps (Photo: UK Environment Agency)

The UK Environment Agency has seen an increase in the amount of illegal fishing devices found along East Anglian river banks, the agency said in a statement on Tuesday, January 26.

In just nine months from March 2020 to December 2020, 52 illegal fishing traps and nets were retrieved. This number included 26 found in Cambridgeshire and Bedfordshire, 14 in Suffolk and Essex, and 12 in Norfolk.

The Environment Agency remarked that, even with the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, the 2020 figures show an increase compared to 2019, when a total of 30 traps were seized across East Anglia over the course of the whole year.

The agency said the illegal instruments trap eels, crayfish, water voles, otters and coarse fish and are therefore a significant risk to wildlife and fish stocks.

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