We aim to develop and implement an electronic catch reporting system for glass eel fisheries in England to improve traceability, reduce illegal trafficking and create efficiencies for fishers and Environment Agency.
It supports the Council Regulation (EC) No 1100/2007 and also Environment Agency (EA) and Defra fisheries policy. English eel fisheries are regulated by the EA. Illegal trafficking in live European glass eels has been identified as a serious threat to the species’ survival. Trafficking towards Asia is enabled by a serious lack in transparency and traceability of live glass eels throughout the supply chain.
We are aiming to implement a convenient tele-declaration system allowing fishers, collectors and traders to electronically report their catches through either a web-based interface or a phone, via text messages. This procedure will be repeated by every following link in the supply chain that participates in the system (collectors, trader, end customer). The data can be checked by the administrator – the EA in this case, in England. The tele-declaration system is based on the French “Telecapêche” system which is widely used in France. The intention here is to implement it onto the main English glass eel fisheries – firstly as a pilot on the River Parett, followed by full implementation there, and then on to the River Severn. Due to national and local differences between the French and the British glass eel fisheries, it requires adaption to local needs. The adapted version for the implementation in the UK will include additional features. Daily reported data can be made accessible for different, eligible parties: e.g. anonymized data for scientists and conservationists; complete and detailed data for enforcement and fishery authorities.