A view on Fishing,Community and Life on the NW coast of Scotland

Five days of grey weather, sometimes wet and breezy, but mostly grey. I would think that the mood would be a bit of a downer, but been very fortunate as I have had some really good conversations and a couple of mini projects have come this way. Through the SCFF become involved in a creel project which is going to see if the mesh size on the creels have an effect on what the catch is. that still has to get off the ground and I still have to pick up the creels and ropes from Aird. May have to go round specifically as the last two weeks I have not had to leave Applecross for my massage as Sarah has been coming here. Also on the fishing front contact has been made as part of a standard survey and that was quickly done followed by a far more interesting conversation about some of the things happening at sea. Chatted about some research, very new, that to me suggests closing an area and walking away sometimes does not work. Seems that just about every where it may be site specific, which < I suppose < is a get out clause for the scientists. I do not think it should but that rile some fishermen if they see an area closed and no improvements in the stock. Going back to this new research from another country…….there was a ten-year closure which saw no recovery of fish stocks. In fact the nephrops did really well, so well that the thought is they modified the bottom so much that the fish could not re-establish in that area. Maybe the Grand Banks suffer from this when a fish stock gets overfished so much it takes more than a closure to allow that stock to recover. Broad Bay and the area around it has been hammered so much in the past that a closure has little benefit to the ecology of the Bay. Not sure opening it up to the dredge is the answer either as that may have been part of the original problem. MPAs are on the way, just hope a lot of thought is put into their establishment and where. One of the worrying statements at last Friday’s meeting was the fact that there was going to be a review of all the “closed areas” but none of the all access areas were going to be checked out which suggests areas are going to be opened up but none closed down. There are some closed areas that do regenerate off Mexico and New Zealand for example, so we are back to site specific. And people thought that fishing was simple. The oceans are the fount of all life and once we start treating it with a lot more respect than we do at present we are in trouble…..Now that felt good. Far better to have a little written rant than shouting at some one.

In complete contrast Val in the guise of AEE posted on fb an invite to blog for 6 weeks on a change of transport. https://www.facebook.com/ApplecrossEnergyEfficiencyAs we have two modes of transport, in the country with two different jobs that is the way. The post nudged me towards doing something about it and I headed off to Toscaig, initially to meet some one from the Dept seeing the croft, missed her, and to check out the electric bike stall in Upper Toscaig.


Well impressed and a little research coming up tomorrow regarding electric bikes and trailers for the prawns and we are going to try to cut out 70/80 miles a week of running around in the van. Not so sure about the basket on the handle bars, not good for the image. Two gallons of diesel will easily counter the outlay of the bike and trailer over a short period and even allowing for the manufacture of the bike will cut down the footprint further. Always a thought as we are supposed to have a higher one living in rural spots. So a coffee, chat to the geese,


and another chat,


and ok, a cuddle,


and a couple of emails later I seem to be guest blogging on a charity blog site. Stopping and thinking what I get myself into is not a strong point, but good fun as a result. Shift at the Inn tonight was great and met some interesting chappies. But more of that later, now it’s hazelnut and pink gooseberry ice cream.

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