New Bass MLS

Minimum conservation reference size for bass set to increase to 42cm



European member states voted to increase the minimum conservation reference size for bass (Dicentrarchus labrax) to 42cm (from 36cm) last week. The new size restriction is set to come into force on the 1st September 2015. The legislation, which will be in the form of a derogation from annex XII of the ‘technical conservation’ Regulation (Council Regulation 850/98) and will be published in the European Union Official Journal in due course.

42 cm is thought to represent a more sustainable size to remove bass from the fishery. Female bass are usually capable of spawning at this size and as such, the increase will go some way to improve the poor spawning stock biomass as reported by ICES (which can be viewed here).

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