Make a Difference
Now more than ever the coral reefs off Broward County need your help and protection. These past few years have seen corals ravaged by Stony Coral Tissue Loss Disease (SCTLD) outbreak that is decimating the reefs at an alarming rate. Within addition to disease, the coral reefs continue to be affected by other stressors, such as poor water quality, marine debris/plastics, fishing, and climatic changes. Follow the link to see what our local scientific community is doing to combat SCTLD
Boaters, anglers, snorkelers, and divers know the importance that this fragile ecosystem has for our community. It is estimated that the Florida Reef system supports more than 70,000 jobs and $6 billion in annual income. A survey study from June 2000 to May 2001 concluded that in Broward County a total of 9.4 million residents and visitors visited natural and artificial reefs along the County’s shoreline. The same study showed that reef related expenditures generated $2.1 billion in annual revenue for the County. It is every users’ responsibility and obligation to help protect and educate those who do not know the importance and value of this ecosystem.
Boaters and Anglers
Tips for Protecting Our Reefs
Never anchor on coral reef or hardbottom. Preferably use the mooring buoys, but if you must anchor do so in sand bottom.
Do not throw trash or food into the water. Dispose or recycle of it properly when back on shore.
Do not touch, harass, or disturb any marine life.
Be careful not to spill any gas or oils into the water. Dispose of any hazardous waste materials properly.
Use environmental friendly cleaning products and bottom paint on your boat.
Follow proper USCG and FWC boating and fishing regulations.
Dispose of monofilament line in proper recycling receptacles, sponsored by the FWC program.
Snorkelers and Scuba Divers
Take time to find the correct weight needed to maintain neutral buoyancy.
Keep all dive gear tucked-in or clipped to avoid dragging on the reef.
Do not touch, harass, or disturb marine life.
Follow proper spearfishing and lobstering regulations and techniques.
Use reef-friendly sun protection.
Properly clean gear between each dive.
Some trash can be picked up to help clean our reefs, like monofilament fishing line, bottles, and cans. Larger or more unwieldy debris such as
rope, anchors, or abandoned lobster traps can be reported.