Regional Inshore Fisheries Groups (RIFGs) aim to improve the management of inshore fisheries in the 0-6 nautical mile zone of Scottish waters, and to give commercial inshore fishermen a strong voice in wider marine management developments.
The Regional IFG network includes:
Key documents for the RIFGs, detailing their structure & functions, decision making process etc, are available on the right-hand side of the page.
The RIFGs are non-stautory bodies and were established in 2016. They succeed the six Inshore Fisheries Groups (IFGs) that were formerly in place from 2013-16.
The North & East Coast Regional Inshore Fisheries Group (N&EC RIFG) has produced a Fisheries Management Plan. The plan is a flexible rolling document, defining the current aims and objectives of the RIFG.
If you have any enquiries regarding the N&EC RIFG, please direct them to Marine Scotland at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The N&EC RIFG was established in April 2016 and succeeds the Moray Firth & North Coast IFG and East Coast IFG, that were in place from 2013-16.
The N&EC RIFG covers inshore waters for up to six nautical miles offshore in the area between Durness on the north coast and all the east coast down to Burnmouth by the border with England.
N&EC RIFG has a Management Committee consisting of representatives drawn from various fishermen’s associations which includes both the mobile and static sector.
The Management Committee is responsible for developing and implementing a Fisheries Management Plan for the region as well as being a forum for discussing inshore fishing issues and making recommendations to Marine Scotland. Minutes of previous meetings are published on this website.
The governance of the N&EC Management Committee is detailed in the Decision Making Process and Structures & Functions documents.
The N&EC RIFG Fisheries Management Plan will be based on the vision of the Scottish Inshore Fisheries Strategy, which is to deliver a more sustainable, profitable and well managed inshore fisheries sector. The key outcomes of this strategy are:
The NEC RIFG carried out an online questionnaire from 4 December 2018 to 5 January 2019 on a range of management options for static gear fishing. The RIFG sought the views of commercial inshore fishermen working static gear within 0-6 NM from the north and east coasts of Scotland.
A report on the outcome of the questionnaire was discussed at the 18 January 2019 meeting of the RIFG, and is available to view here.
Following a suggestion to reach out to other marine stakeholders, th NEC RIFG Chairman made a presentation to the Forth Estuary Forum on 6 December 2018 entitled ‘What the fishing industry is doing to deliver the National Marine Plan’.
Presentations following the same theme were also made by Dr David Donnan from Scottish Natural Heritage, and Dr Andrew Whiston a marine scientist and inshore fisherman from St Andrews.
A meeting of the N&EC RIFG took place on 12 April 2019 at the Queens Hotel, Perth.
A meeting of the N&EC RIFG took place on 18 January 2019 at the Queens Hotel, Perth.
A meeting of the N&EC RIFG took place on 24 August 2018 at the Queens Hotel, Perth.
A meeting of the N&EC RIFG took place on 20 April 2018 at the Queens Hotel, Perth.
A meeting of the N&EC RIFG took place on 19 January 2018 at the Queens Hotel, Perth.
A meeting of the N&EC RIFG took place on 8 September 2017 at the Queens Hotel, Perth.
A meeting of the N&EC RIFG took place on 9 June 2017 at the Queens Hotel, Perth.
A meeting of the N&EC RIFG took place on 3 March 2017 at the Queens Hotel, Perth.
A meeting of the N&EC RIFG took place on 25 November 2016 at the Queens Hotel, Perth.
A meeting of the N&EC RIFG took place on 3 June 2016 at the Queens Hotel, Perth.
The West Coast Regional Inshore Fisheries Group (WCRIFG) has produced a Fisheries Management Plan. The plan is a flexible rolling document, defining the current aims and objectives of the WCRIFG.
Its overarching objectives remain consistent with those included in the management plans produced in 2012 by the then-pilot IFGs. The current plan also takes cognisance of more recent developments such as the Scottish Inshore Fisheries Strategy, Marine Planning developments, and the issues or aims identified by WCRIFG members.
The Fisheries Management Plan is a working document that guides the activities of WCRIFG and the first annual review took place in May 2018.
The Chair of the WCRIFG is Alastair McNeill. He can be contacted on 07799 572501 or email@example.com.
The WCRIFG was established in April 2016 as an amalgamation of the former South West and North West Inshore Fisheries Groups. The WCRIFG covers inshore waters for up to six nautical miles offshore from Cape Wrath in the north to the national border with England in the Solway Firth.
The WCRIFG has a Management Committee which meets at least twice per year though it may convene more frequently if required. The Management Committee is supported by four geographic subcommittees namely, Clyde, Mull & Argyll, Solway and, West Highlands & Skye. Subcommittees may meet as often as four times per year and include locally based members. Subcommittees support the WCRIFG by developing aims and objectives as well as undertaking other activities such as projects pertaining to their respective areas.
The geographic subcommittees were selected in recognition of differences in inshore fishing cultures within each area but also to coincide with current and future marine planning partnership areas. These areas are also largely consistent with current Fisheries Local Action Groups (FLAGS) which are responsible for recommending applications for funding under the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF).
The Management Committee or Subcommittees may establish working groups to deal with specific issues that require greater input than can be resolved during committee meetings. Working groups will generally be short lived task and finish in nature and the membership will normally be agreed by the Chair in consultation, where appropriate, with committee members. The findings of working groups as well as the outcomes of Subcommittee meetings are ultimately reported to the WCRIFG Committee to ensure scrutiny, transparency and consistency in decision making.
The first Aquaculture Work Group Meeting took place in Glasgow on the 14 May. The group agreed the format of the Aquaculture Position Statement which will be made available from June. The Work Group has agreed to meet again in July.
The Position Statement - Subsea Cables, has been reviewed after being redrafted for the WCRIFG management committee meeting and the updated version can be seen here.
The Management Committee met in Glasgow on the 27 March. A well attended event was joined by video links from three coastal locations. Members received updates by means of presentations on the following topics:
The first phase of the Mull pilot project ended on 31 January after four months. Early indications are that the pilot has been very successful. A review meeting will take place in the spring to fully assess the trial which is scheduled to be repeated again in October 2019.
A well attended meeting of the West Highlands & Skye Subcommittee took place in Kyleakin on the evening of 19 February. The agenda provided for discussions on a variety of topics pertinent to the geographic area of the meeting. A report on actions recorded in the Draft Note of the Meeting will be made to the next management committee meeting in March.
An online survey by means of a questionnaire in connection with the WCRIFG King Scallop Management Conservation Strategy Outreach Project was circulated by MRAG consultants. The aim was for WCRIFG members to complete the questionnaire and to facilitate this, the deadline for its completion was extended to 11 February.
MRAG consultants are expected to report their findings at the next WCRIFG Management Committee meeting on the 27 March.
SSQC consultants are completing work in relation to the Solway Cockle Outreach Project which is exploring processes for enabling potential commercial harvesting trials to take place. The consultants are expected to produce a preliminary report in March 2019.
The first tag has been returned in relation to the crab tagging exercise that began in west coast waters in October 2018. Tagging has taken place in relation to the Mull pilot project as well as in other west coast waters north of Mull. Tagging will complement work underway in Orkney and will help to provide details of brown crab migration patterns.
The WCRIFG Management Committee met on 20 August at the Optima, Glasgow.
The Aquaculture Work Group met at Atlantic Quay, Glasgow on 14 May. A note of the meeting can be seen here.
The WCRIFG Management Committee met on 27 March at Atlantic Quay, Glasgow. Joined by video connections from Aberdeen, Ayr and Stornoway, a well attended meeting was updated by means of presentations on a number of current activities.
The West Highlands & Skye Subcommittee met at Kyleakin Community Centre, Kyleakin on the evening of 19 February.
A work group meeting was held on the 6 December 2018 at the MacPhail Centre Ullapool and a Draft Note highlights the key points discussed
A well-attended WCRIFG Management Committee meeting took place at the Optima Building, Glasgow on 30 October 2018. Video links from Marine Scotland offices in Aberdeen, Buckie, Oban, Stornoway and, Ullapool allowed members based remotely to join the meeting.
The WCRIFG Solway Subcommittee met on 27 September 2018 at Creebrige, Newton Stewart. A key purpose of the meeting was to review the Solway Code of Conduct in advance of the start of the 2018-19 scallop season on 1 November 2018.
The full WCRIFG Management Committee met on the 8 May 2018 at Atlantic Quay, Glasgow. The meeting was joined by VC links from Aberdeen, Kirkwall and Ullapool.
A well attended meeting of the Solway subcommittee took place on 11 January 2018 at Cree Bridge, Newton Stewart.
The Clyde Subcommittee met at the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow on 29 November 2017.
A meeting of the WCRIFG Solway Subcommittee took place on the evening of the 5 October 2017 at Cree Bridge, Newton Stewart.
The full WCRIFG Management Committee met on the 25 October 2017 at Atlantic Quay, Glasgow. The meeting was joined by VC links from Aberdeen and Stornoway.
The WCRIFG Mull & Argyll Subcommittee work group met on the evening of 1 September 2017 at Craignure, Mull.
A WCRIFG Management Committee Scallop work group meeting took place at Victoria Quay, Edinburgh on 21 June 2017.
A well attended meeting of the management committee was held in Glasgow on 19 April 2017.
The Clyde Subcommittee met on 9 March 2017 at The Briggait, Glasgow.
A Scallop work group of the Management Committee met on 14 February 2017 at Victoria Quay, Edinburgh.
A work group of the Mull & Argyll Subcommittee met on 31 January 2017 at Isle of Mull Hotel, Craignure, Mull.
The Solway Subcommittee met on the evening of 1 December 2016 at Creebridge, Newton Stewart.
The WCRIFG Committee met in Glasgow on 7 December 2016 with video connection links to Aberdeen and Oban.
A working group representing the WCRIFG met in Glasgow on 26 October to review the position with regards to the voluntary closure of the Loch Sunart MPA (see meeting note).
On 28 September a Working Group representing the West Highlands and Skye Subcommittee met in Kyle to review the outcomes of the workshops held in Inverness on 22 July & 2 September with the aim of suggesting proposals for the consideration of the WCRIFG and thereafter Marine Scotland.
The WCRIFG Committee met in Glasgow on 22 September primarily because of concerns of potential impacts by large numbers of displaced vessels in relation to the qualifying features of the Loch Sunart to Sound of Jura MPA. (see meeting note).
On 7 September a meeting of the Solway Subcommittee Working Group (Cockles) took place in Castle Douglas.
An independently facilitated meeting/workshop involving members of the West Highlands & Skye Subcommittee took place in Inverness on 2 September in connection with the Inner Sound.
A meeting took place on 26 August involving Tiree based members of the Mull & Argyll Subcommittee in Oban with representatives of SNH and Marine Scotland to discuss proposed marine conservation measures for Coll & Tiree.
The Mull Subcommittee Working Group met at Craignure on 26 April to explore potential opportunities to improve gear conflict issues and sustainable fisheries management off the west Coast of Mull.
A mediated workshop regarding the Inner Sound and involving members of the West Highlands & Skye Subcommittee took place on 22 July in Inverness.
A meeting of the Solway Subcommittee Working Group (Cockles) was held in Castle Douglas on 14 July.
The first meeting of the WCRIFG Committee met on 1 June when the committee structure of the recently formed regional IFG was agreed (see minutes).
A meeting of the Solway Subcommittee Working Group (Cockles) met on 31 May in Castle Douglas.
The West Highlands and Skye Subcommittee held an inaugural meeting on 20 May when matters discussed included issues concerning the Inner Sound.
For information on the Outer Hebrides Regional IFG, you can contact:
Name Position Email Phone
Donald Nicholson Chair firstname.lastname@example.org 07788 963497
Duncan Macinnes Secretariat email@example.com 07748 332595
OH IFG responds to
The Outer Hebrides IFG has responded to Marine Scotland regarding a number of Marine Conservation Orders.
You can download the response here.
Outer Hebrides IFG shellfish measures come into force
New shellfish landing measures for the Outer Hebrides, developed by the IFG, come into force from today.
The Outer Hebrides (Landing of Crabs and Lobsters) Order 2015 introduces the following:
These measures were developed by the Outer Hebrides IFG as part of its local management plan. The IFG approached Marine Scotland in 2014 to legislate on these proposals, which are now being introduced following the successful outcome to a public consultation.
OH IFG responds to Orkney shellfish consultation
The Outer Hebrides IFG has responded to Marine Scotland’s consultation on new management measures on crab and lobster landings into Orkney.
You can download the IFG’s response here.
OH IFG responds to Hobby/Unlicensed Fishermen consultation
The Outer Hebrides IFG has responded to Marine Scotland’s consultation on hobby/unlicensed fishermen.
You can download the IFG’s response here.
OH IFG responds to Marine Scotland consultations
The Outer Hebrides IFG has responded to a number of on-going Marine Scotland consultations. You can view the responses below:
Consultation on new controls in the Scottish King Scallop Fishery
Consultation on the management of inshore Special Areas of Conservation and Marine Protected Areas
Promoting Best Practice for Inshore Fisheries: A consultation on measures to tackle gear conflict in Scottish inshore waters
Outer Hebrides IFG consultation launched
Marine Scotland have launched a consultation on management proposals for lobster, velvet crab and brown crabs landed into the Outer Hebrides. The management measures were developed by the Outer Hebrides IFG.
You can find out more details in the news release and the consultation itself can be downloaded here. The deadline for responses is Friday 29 August 2014.
The Chair responded on behalf of the IFG to the consultation on the Recommendations from the Scottish Licensing Review Working Group.
The Chair responded on behalf of the IFG to the consultation on the Allocation of Mackerel Quota for Inshore Fishing.
The Chair responded on behalf of the IFG to the consultation on Priority Marine Features.
The Chair responded on behalf of the IFG to the consultation on Possible Nature Conservation Marine Protected Areas.
The Chair responded on behalf of the IFG to the Strategic Environmental Assessment of the IFG Management Plans.
A meeting of the Outer Hebrides RIFG will be held on 28 June 2019 in Stornoway.
A meeting of the Outer Hebrides RIFG was held on 2 February 2019 in Stornoway.
Orkney Sustainable Fisheries Ltd (OSF) was established in 2006 to run the local lobster hatchery and carry out research projects on the local shellfish populations. It’s an industry run company with the board of directors largely made up of fishermen who have an active input into the work that we do. In 2013 OSF was recognised by Marine Scotland as the local Inshore Fisheries Group for Orkney.
We now have two full time researchers, Matthew Coleman and Elisabete Rodrigues who collect and analyse data on the local, Brown Crab, European Lobster and Velvet Crab populations. OSF has just completed its 4 year Orkney Fisheries Research Project which involved working with The Crown Estate, Marks and Spencer, WWF and Orkney Islands Council to look into the interaction between fishing activity and the Marine Renewable Industry and assess the Brown crab stock in Orkney. OSF has undertaken a number of different research project including a Juvenile Lobster Habitat Trials which are investigating the use of artificial structures for habitat enhancement and a national study on the Maturity of the Brown Crabs which is being co-ordinated by Bangor University. Currently OSF is undertaken a study investigating the Discard Survival and Condition in Orkney Brown Crabs within the inshore fishery, looking to establish the level of mortality that occurs through the discarding of undersize individual within commercial creeling activity.
As of 2017 OSF has employed a part time fishery development manager, Kate Rydzokwski who is managing the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) assessment of the OSF Orkney brown crab creel fishery as well as under taking out reach work through out Orkney. The brown crab Fishery Improvement Project (FIP) is the first in the UK to enter the full MSC assessment process.
OSF works alongside Heriot Watt University Orkney Campus where our scientific advisor Dr Mike Bell is based. Dr Bell aids with stock assessment on our shellfish stocks as well as providing expertise on our fisheries science research projects.
Orkney Sustainable Fisheries is committed to providing sound science on the shellfish populations of Orkney which can aid our local fishing industry.
The Inshore Fisheries Groups (IFGs) model that was in place from 2013-16 consisted of six non-statutory bodies that aimed to improve the management of Scotland’s inshore fisheries out to six nautical miles, and to give commercial inshore fishermen a strong voice in wider marine management developments.
This process began in 2009 when six pilot IFGs were set up around the coast. These covered the Clyde, Moray Firth, North West, Outer Hebrides, Small Isles & Mull, and South East. Each of the pilot IFGs developed an inshore fisheries management plan for its respective area.
Following on from this pilot, six full IFGs were established to take forward and developed their management plans areas. The IFGs covered the following areas:
The remit and a map of the former IFG model are available to download:
IFG Map (2013-16) IFG Remit (2013-16)
And also the IFG newsletters published during this time:
Spring 2014 Winter 2014-15
About the East Coast IFG
The East Coast IFG has now been succeded by the North & East Coast Regional IFG, which commenced activities in April 2016.
About the Moray Firth & North Coast IFG
The Moray Firth & North Coast IFG has now been succeded by the North & East Coast Regional IFG, which commenced activities in April 2016.
About the North West IFG
The North West IFG has now been succeded by the West Coast Regional IFG, which commenced activities in April 2016.
About the South West IFG
The South West IFG has now been succeded by the West Coast Regional IFG, which commenced activities in April 2016.
Clyde Small Isles & Mull
Management Plan Management Plan
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