The European Fishing Tackle Trade Association, EFTTA, today backed calls for a Pan-European cormorant management plan - after new research indicated that fish stocks are being depleted by the birds at a rate of 1,000 tonnes a day.
The Association held its Annual General Assembly during the three-day EFTTEX exhibition on June 13-15 and saw graphic evidence that an increasing number of colonies of the fish-eating birds were sweeping across Europe at an alarming rate.
With more than 1million cormorants established on the continent - each capable of eating half a kilogramme of fish a day - the organisation is concerned that unless effective control measures are put in place, fish stocks could be wiped out in many areas of Europe.
Members heard that new figures for the number of breeding birds will be presented to the European Parliament Fisheries Committee later this month (June 26) by Franz Kohl, of the European Anglers Alliance.
It is hoped that the evidence will give additional support to the movement for a Pan-European Cormorant Management Plan - being spearheaded by Fisheries Committee member and German MEP, Dr Heinz Kindermann - which is due to be voted on by the Parliament in November.