Almost 50 kilos of barnacles and sea urchins seized

28 professional shellfish gatherers and recreational fishermen were inspected

49,7 kilos of crustaceans, of which 28,7 kg of barnacles and 21 kg of sea urchins were seized during two recreational and professional fishing inspection actions in the Sudoeste Alentejano and Costa Vicentina Natural Park, which took place on the 8th and April 9th.

The ICNF said, in a note sent to newsrooms, that the seized barnacles were handed over to a local IPSS, while the sea urchins were returned to their habitat as they were alive.

The actions were carried out by the Preventive Surveillance and Inspection Division of the Regional Directorate for Nature Conservation and Forests of the Algarve, the GNR-UCC Coastal Control Detachment of Sines and the Maritime Police of the Port of Sines.

In total, 28 professional shellfish gatherers and recreational fishermen were inspected and seven reports of administrative offenses for excessive catches were collected.

Following these inspection actions, the ICNF warns of the “importance of respecting legislation on recreational fishing and harvesting of marine animals, with the maximum quantity of barnacles harvested being 2 kg per recreational license and 15 kg for each license professional".

Furthermore, he adds, «the barnacle must have a minimum catch size (20mm) as provided for in Ordinance No. 385/2006, which requires the fisherman to respect these measures leaving the smaller ones in their habitat, because the barnacles pulled from rocks rarely survive.”

Professional licenses “are limited, with only 80 licenses being issued for the entire coast of the PNSACV, under the terms of Ordinance No. 385/2006, of April 19, which approves the Regulation for the Commercial Harvesting of Percebe in the Southwest Alentejo Natural Park and Costa Vicentina (PNSACV) with changes given by Ordinance no. 388/2008, of May 30th and Order no. 17732/2006, of August 31st, which sets the number of licenses for harvesting barnacles in the PNSACV, amended by Order no. 7667/2011, of May 26th».

Decree-Law No. 101/2013 of June 25th regulates recreational fishing activity (including the harvesting of marine animals) and states that “it is prohibited to expose for sale, offer for sale or sell marine specimens, animals or plants, or their parts caught in recreational fishing”.

The ICNF also warns recreational and professional fishermen to “comply with the rules in order to maintain the sustainability of marine resources and their continuity for future generations”.