LOCAL anglers' concerns about wild salmon stocks in the rivers of Meath and Louth are to be raised with the authorities by local Deputies Gerald Nash and Dominic Hannigan.
The Labour deputies met with a delegation from the North East Anglers Federation, which outlined their concerns and fears in relation to farmed salmon.
'In recent years local anglers have put a lot of effort into trying to conserve and restore fish stocks in rivers across the two counties, particularly the Boyne, Dee, Glyde, Fane and Castletown rivers,' said Deputy Hannigan.
'Their work and that of Inland Fisheries Ireland to protect wild salmon is now starting to pay off as fish stocks are improving.
The delegation, representing 15 angling clubs in the North East, gave Deputies Hannigan and Nash a presentation on the impact salmon farming could have on wild salmon stocks in local rivers.
'Anglers fear that any expansion of farmed salmon fishing around our coasts will result in more young wild salmon becoming infected with lice from their farmed cousins,' said Deputy Hannigan.
'They also raised issues around the possibility of young wild salmon smolts being used to stock any potential fish farms.
'We appreciate the anglers concerns and will be bringing them to the attention of the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Simon Coveney,' added Deputy Hannigan.