To stop the needless drowning of hundreds of loggerheads and other sea turtles, the Florida longline fishery is being closed down for 6 months--just in time for the start of the nesting season in May!
Thanks to the more than 2,500 of you who signed our petition* for the emergency closure, we turned the tide on the deadly bottom longline fishery off Florida's coast where 800 threatened loggerheads were caught in 17 months. STRP will be submitting the petition with the 2,500 signatures and
comments - more than 80 pages long - into the public record.
Now we need you to do TWO things to make sure the longline fishery stays closed and sea turtles are protected for the long-term. Your Letter Will Make a Difference Even if You Already Signed The Petition!
- Speak up now to make sure the emergency closure remains in place until a full review of the threats to sea turtles from the fishery is completed. Add your voice to the public comment on the closure, which are being requested by National Marine Fisheries Service by June 1.
- If you can, please also donate today to the Sea Turtle Restoration Project's efforts to protect loggerhead sea turtles. We rely on the contributions of committed people like you to protect sea turtles from industrial fishing.
Deadline to Comment is June 1, 2009! Take these simple steps:
1. Click here!
2. Enter your first & last name under "Submitter Information"
3. List "Private Citizen" as your "Organization"
4. Cut and Paste the sample comment letter under "Public Comment or Submission" or write your own. Tell NMFS that the Florida longline fishery must stay closed to protect
sea turtles in the Gulf of Mexico. Say that the fishery should not be
opened until sea turtle protection is certain. See our letter below.
5. Click submit
Or fax to 727-824-5308 or mail to Cynthia Meyer, Southeast Regional Office, NMFS, 263 13th Avenue South, St. Petersburg, FL 33701.
Please finalize the Emergency Closure of the Bottom Longline Fishery in the Gulf of Mexico to protect sea turtles from capture and drowning. The Emergency Closure should remain in place for the full five months as proposed. I also urge you to extend it for another five months as allowed by law. Under no circumstances should this fishery be re-opened until a full biological review is completed as required under the Endangered Species Act - and until measures to protect sea turtles from drowning on longlines are required. The permanent closure of the fishery should be given full consideration given that hundreds of rare and endangered sea turtles are caught and killed every year.
Thanks again! Donate here to support our work. By making a contribution or becoming a recurring donor, you support
our efforts to save endangered sea turtles and their ocean home.