Posted on August 20, 2015
All forms of dredging have been banned in an area of seabed off Scotland’s west Highlands coast, following a scallop dredger’s damage to a coral-like seaweed called maerl, reports the BBC.
Scottish Environment Secretary Richard Lochhead told the newspaper the scale of the damage had left him with no choice but to bring forward the timing of the ban, which had originally been slated to begin in November.
“It’s very disappointing that a scallop dredger has breached the voluntary fishery management measures in this MPA, which is considered vital to the recovery of maerl beds,” he told the news outlet.
The maerl beds provide protection to young cod, scallops and crabs.