Illegal fishing net damages artificial reef

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A FISHING net has caused significant damage to an artificial reef created from a naval ship and home to more than 250 species of wildlife, experts said.

The National Marine Aquarium said the 100-metre fishing net is thought to have been set illegally by unlicensed fishermen close to Cornwall’s Scylla reef, which was recently nominated as a marine protected area.

A team of professional divers have started the process of removing the net, which has been on the reef for more than six weeks, and freeing marine animals including fish and crabs that are still trapped in it.

The artificial reef was created in 2004 when Royal Navy frigate HMS Scylla was sunk in Whitsand Bay, Cornwall.