In some traditional, small-scale fisheries aimed at deep-sea species, such as black scabbardfish and red sea bream, by-catch of deep-sea sharks can be minimised but ends up being inevitable on a small scale, while they cannot be returned to the sea in a condition to survive.
There is clearly a serious lack of knowledge of the species in question — which were not even distinguished on unloading, population numbers and the varying reproduction strategies that can result in different resilience to fishing, reflected in the differing conservation status of the various species.
In view of the above, I ask the Commission for information on the following:
Is it intending to insist on maintaining a zero TAC for these species? What evidence does it have pointing to the appropriateness of a measure of this kind and confirming that a benefit for the resource will result?
Does it not think that the possibility of permitting by-catch of deep-sea sharks up to a set limit would encourage better understanding of the species in question, population numbers and reproduction strategies, so that more appropriate conservation measures can be devised?