§ Mr. FETHERSTONHAUGH
asked the Chief Secretary whether, having regard to the almost complete extermination of salmon and trout in Lough Erne, county Fermanagh, by netting on the lake and destruction of breeding fish in the spawning season on the spawning beds, he will take effective steps to prevent these abuses, and recall or modify the imposition of fishing licences for rod and line, which are vexatious to local anglers and useless as a means of preservation of fish, which in such extensive waters could never be exterminated by rod and line fishing?
§ Mr. BIRRELL
The bed and soil of Lough Erne are the property of the Crown and under the management of the Commissioner of Woods. No one, except a limited number of persons possessing a right of common fishery under patents, has any right to fish there without the permission of the Commissioner of Woods. Permits to fish with rod and line for pike and other coarse fish are issued free of charge, and more than 100 permits have been given to Enniskillen anglers during the present season. The conditions attached to the permits are only directed against unsportsmanlike and illegal methods of fishing, and no complaint has been made in regard to them. The Commissioner of Woods is anxious to improve the fishing, which has been deteriorated by the destructive and illegal methods of fishing practised in some cases, and he would welcome any assistance or co-operation in putting down the abuses which exist.