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Fisheries and Fish farms

Fisheries cover sea fisheries and river fisheries for wild fish. Sea fisheries relate to the public right of fishery enjoyed so far as the tide flows and reflowss subjects, except where prior to Magna Carta a private fishery had been granted by the Crown or is presumed, or where private fisheries have been created statutorily.

European legislation, UK statutes and sea fishery byelaws introduce many complications. In regulated fisheries only those with licences can exploit the public right.

We act for fishermen challenging regulations. We advise fishermen as to claimed private fisheries, and act for private fishery owners in protecting their rights.

Rights of freshwater river fishing usually belong to riparian owners.

Marine fin fish farms use cages moored in relatively sheltered waters, and have had environmental impacts on water quality and biodiversity.

Shellfish farmers in sheltered estuaries lay down small fished molluscs, or oysters produced in hatcheries, and grow them to marketable size. Because molluscs are vulnerable to pollution we have taken legal action against UK and Irish governments.

On lakes and other artificial bodies of water the fish are private property, mostly coming from inland fish farms. Regulation of these is highly complex, including abstraction from streams and groundwater, discharges to river, land drainage, fish health, movement controls and medicines, water quality, weirs and sluices, bypass channels, protection of biodiversity – and planning.

These farms are vulnerable to pollution and with specialist forensic accountants we deal with complex claims against polluters.

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