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Community Volunteers AND Miami-Dade County Come Together To Minimize The Impact Of Derelict Traps in Two Environmentally Sensitive Marine Areas


Two of Miami-Dade County’s environmentally sensitive areas include the shallow waters in the vicinity of Card Sound Road and southern Biscayne Bay, where lost and abandoned crab and lobster traps can have a negative impact on marine resources.  These “derelict” traps may harm sensitive ecosystems, cause economic impact to the fishing industry, and can be a hazard to recreational and commercial vessels.  Derelict traps frequently continue to ensnare and kill crabs, fish and other marine organisms for years.

The problem of derelict traps is pervasive throughout the coastal areas of the United States, but has been largely overlooked in the waters of Miami-Dade County until recently.  The Miami-Dade County Department of Environmental Resources Management (DERM) in partnership with SeaGrant, National Fish & Wildlife Foundation and other organizations will be taking action to remove derelict traps from the Card Sound Road area on Sunday, July 10th beginning at 7:30 AM and southern Biscayne Bay on Saturday, July 16th starting at 8:00 AM. Volunteers will be removing and disposing of derelict traps and other marine debris from the nearshore waters surrounding Card Sound Road, and in southwestern Biscayne Bay between Black Point and Convoy Point.  These clean up events are part of a larger marine debris removal project that is administered by DERM and has been supported by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWCC), and the County’s Biscayne Bay Environmental Enhancement Trust Fund.  The events are scheduled to coincide with a ten-day closure of the blue crab trapping season, which is specifically intended to facilitate the removal of derelict blue crab traps.