ANGLERS were celebrating today following a surprise Scottish Government u-turn on its controversial decision to allow the country’s biggest coastal netting station to extend its catching season close to a major salmon river.

Last August furious salmon fishing interest on the River Esk in Angus accused the Government of “reckless irresponsibility” in its approach to salmon conservation following its unprecedented decision to grant Angus-based Usan Salmon Fisheries the right to extend the season at its netting station near the mouth of the River Esk into September.

Local anglers, who operate a catch and release policy to conserve stocks of wild Atlantic salmon, claimed the two-week extension to the coastal netting operation would lead to an additional 1,000 salmon being killed every year.

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The Scotsman