MR. PATRICK O'BRIEN
I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland whether he is aware that there has been a decrease of salmon in the rivers Barrow and Nore for the past fifteen years, which has been estimated to be £30,000 a year; whether he is aware that this is mainly due to the destruction of spawning fish in the fresh water, and of fry by trawlers and drum nets at the river mouth; and whether he will cause an inquiry to be held before the end of the close season, 15th April, at New Ross and Inistiogue to investigate the question and suggest a remedy.
§ MR. G. W. BALFOUR
The Inspectors of Irish Fisheries have no statistics as to the capture of salmon in the rivers mentioned. It appears to be a fact, however, comparing the quantities of salmon exported from Ireland to the principal English markets, that there has been a general falling off in the capture of salmon in recent years in Ireland. My information does not bear out the allegation in the second paragraph. I see no reason for directing an inquiry to be held in this particular case as suggested in the third paragraph; but I may remind the hon. Member that the subject of the inland fisheries and fishery laws in Ireland is about to be investigated by a Viceregal Commission.