Wildlife around Caerphilly Castle moat injured by discarded fishing line
Swans, cygnets, geese and ducks at Caerphilly Castle moat are being injured because of discarded fishing line.
Over the last 12 months, Swan Rescue South Wales has been called out to numerous incidents where fishing lines have been swallowed or caught in the beaks, or wrapped around the legs or wings of the local wildlife.
Cadw, the public body which looks after the castle, is asking visitors and the local community to act responsibly and look after the local wildlife.
Tony Payne, head of custodian at Caerphilly Castle, said: “We are urging all anglers to purchase an angling permit through the Caerphilly Angling Association at Tony’s Tackle Shop in Castle Street, opposite the castle, and to ensure they dispose of their fishing line, hooks and weights in a responsible way.
“We’re asking everyone to help us look after this great historic landmark, the habitat around it and the wildlife which has made its home there.”
Peter Martin, from Swan Rescue South Wales, added: “Rescues of swans, geese and ducks in and around Caerphilly Castle are never simple or straightforward because of the steep and often slippery banks.
“Additionally, much of the shoreline is inaccessible. Failure to catch a distressed bird results inevitably in impaired mobility or a drastically reduced ability to feed. The effects of this are in any case traumatic, but in the worst situation leads to a lingering death.
“It is therefore essential that the correct angling practices are followed, to ensure the safety of the wildlife.”
John Phillips, secretary for the Caerphilly Angling Association backed the calls for responsible fishing.
He said: “We encourage our members to act responsibly, and often participate in activities such as litter picking to ensure this spectacular site is kept at its best for visitors and for wildlife.
“We have written to more than 200 of our members to advise them of the problem, as we realise what a special site this is.
“However although most people do follow regulated angling practices, unfortunately we have very little control over the small minority who act irresponsibly. We cannot control those who purchase day permits, or those who are fishing illegally – who are probably responsible for causing the problems.
“We urge all anglers to follow the regulations and expected standards, to ensure we can all enjoy this magnificent castle.”
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