Weekly Highlights - May 3, 2019
Read about this week's enforcement efforts from around the country.
Enforcement Officers conducted an underway MMPA patrol of the Galveston Bay and along Galveston Island in support of the Turtle Island Stranding Network and Texas Marine Mammal Stranding Network. The EO’s received reports of hundreds of deceased animals washing ashore. The stranding networks were worried about potential environmental effects from the fire at the Intercontinental Terminals Co. tank fire in Houston. The officers did not observe any deceased marine wildlife during the patrol.
An agent in the Slidell Field Office and an enforcement officer in Houma travelled to Shell Beach, Louisiana regarding a live bait trawler interacting with and feeding dolphins. The agent and the officer provided education and outreach to the owner of the marina regarding the potential adverse effects when humans interact with dolphins. Follow up will be conducted with the operators of the marina’s live bait vessel.
- Two Enforcement Officers conducted a dockside boarding of a fishing vessel to address observer complaints. The MCP Platform head and spare head were inspected and the serial numbers were identified. Collection of the certification documentation was obtained as well and verified. A review identified a failed test and then a subsequent passing test.
- Officers participated in the Sport Rec and Trade show in Soldotna, AK. Over 4,500 people attended the show, with nearly 1,000 people asking questions related to NOAA OLE, sport fishing, charter fishing, transporting, buying fish, IFQ, CDQ, MMPA and ESA regulations.
A Special Agent and an Enforcement Officer conducted interviews of material witnesses in Honiara, Solomon Islands regarding investigations of U.S. flag purse seine vessels focused on alleged MMPA violations and the enforcement of WCPFC conservation measures. In addition, they reviewed a large number of records for U.S. flag purse seine vessel’s trips at FFA HQ and made liaison contacts with FFA and other foreign government personnel in Honiara.
Along the Waianae Coast of Oahu, an Enforcement Officer participated on a Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) sea patrol onboard the Hawaii State Department of Conservation and Resource Enforcement (DOCARE) patrol vessel together with two (2) JEA Officers. During the patrol, the officers monitored five motor vessels as they were dolphin watching. A second PID EO was observing the same activities of the vessels with a clear vantage point from land along the same coastline. No violations were found during the patrol.