CLEARWATER, Fla. – Reef Monitoring, Inc. will conduct a monofilament cleanup at Pier 60 this Saturday, Aug. 17 from 8 to 11 a.m. to remove fishing line, ropes, ghost traps, and tackle equipment such as fish hooks, sinkers, lures, etc. that create an entanglement for and endanger birds and marine life. The pier will be closed to anglers during that time.
According to the Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission, monofilament fishing line and fishing hooks that are improperly handled or discarded can entangle wildlife, leading to injury and death. Here are some simple things fishermen can do to help protect brown pelicans and other wildlife:
– Properly dispose of monofilament line. If you have unwanted line, store it safely and securely until it can be placed in a recycling bin.
– Don’t leave fishing line unattended, as pelicans may be tempted to steal your bait.
– Avoid casting near trees, utility lines and other areas where your line may get caught.
– Check your tackle frequently for frayed line that may easily break.
– Do not feed pelicans or other wildlife, since it encourages them to approach fishing boats, piers and anglers. If available, use fish-scrap repositories. If they are not available, discard your fish scraps in a garbage can or at home.
Reef Monitoring, Inc. is a certified 501(c) (3) non-profit organization that is dedicated to provide educational programs, care for and improve Florida’s valuable reef and estuarine ecosystems, to advance sustainable communities, to help build institutional ability, and to gain broad-based public support for ongoing marine conservation, habitat enhancement, research and education programs.