South Scotland

River Tweed salmon poaching crackdown starts

Image caption Salmon fishing on the River Tweed makes a big contribution to the local economy

A crackdown on poaching by professional gangs has been launched on one of Scotland's premier salmon rivers.

Several agencies are joining forces to stamp out illegal activity on the River Tweed in the Scottish Borders.

Lothian and Borders Police, Scottish Borders Council, Crimestoppers and the River Tweed Commission want to protect the 97-mile long river.

Nick Yonge of the River Tweed Commission said its water bailiff team would be working closely with police.

He said salmon poaching was a criminal act which seriously damaged breeding stocks of fish.

"River netsmen and anglers all agree not to kill early running stocks of salmon in accordance with the Tweed Spring Salmon Conservation rules," he said.

"The reason for the rules is that there are only just enough fish returning from the sea to sustain the breeding population.

"Killing any spring salmon reduces that breeding stock and will not be tolerated."

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