Broughton thinks a closed-season review is unlikely.
Experienced fisheries management consultant Dr Bruno Broughton has added his opinion to the ongoing close-season debate. An expert in his field, Bruno is familiar with most of the arguments for and against a coarse fish close season.
He explained: “The 93-day closure on rivers is an approximation to cover the span of breeding times for most coarse fish in most years, from early spawners (such as pike) to late spawners (notably tench and carp). It’s true that some fish can spawn outside the mid-March to mid-June period, and synchronised spawning is unlikely to occur with the same species in Kent and in Cumbria.
“The difficulty with abolishing the coarse fish close season on rivers is that fish don’t stay in one place and ownership of fishing rights is in multiple hands. With no statutory spring closure, you might instigate your own month-long angling break to protect the fish in your stretch of river, but it would be pointless if they swam upstream en masse to a major spawning area (which often occurs) where there was no voluntary close season and where they were subject to intense angling pressure. Unlike the situation on most stillwaters, any damage to these fish or their ability to breed would have consequences for multiple owners.
“However, I expect that in future this topic will be subject to review, and it will be interesting to see what evidence is advanced to justify the retention or abolition of the river close season. Just don’t hold your breath… I don’t think that a review is likely in the near future.”