Wildlife in our marine and aquatic environments are impacted through dangers such as entanglement caused by discarded fishing line and other materials. Seal the Loop aims to prevent this material entering the environment at all, by installing brightly coloured bins in popular fishing spots for anglers to dispose their waste in. Made from recycled plastics, they also contain messaging to help promote responsible disposal of fishing materials and advice if someone sees injured wildlife.
Fishcares involvement has been championed through one volunteer in particular who has data ranging back to 2010 regarding the amount of line, tackle and other litter placed in the Seal the loop bins. Below, Remy shares his story and journey with the Seal the Loop program.
“It all started when Fishcare members were invited to the zoo to learn about the Seal the loop program. We saw seals that had been rescued and were being cared for as a result of injuries from marine litter. It was then I made the decision to volunteer to check waste line bins in different locations. A reasonable amount of anglers are doing the right thing. Items (apart from waste line) include terminal tackle, squid jigs, cigarette boxes, bait bags, cans, water bottles, ice cream wrappers, even nappies (lazy parents!). Some of the public use the bin for domestic rubbish, I wish I knew where they lived so I could put it back in their letter box. I empty the bins on behalf of Fishcare and it’s members and I really enjoy the program. It get’s me out of the house, I bus and train to different sites and enjoy the walks. I collect the contents of the bin in a bag and take it home to sort – swivels, hooks, sinkers, beads, traces, lures etc. This is all recorded and every 6 months each bag from nominated bin is weighed – it’s contents recorded and tallied. Hooks are cleaned for reuse and all terminal tackle is recycled. To date as of June 2018 recording reveal that since December 2010 Fishcare has now collected 835 swivels, 1378 hooks, 299 sinkers and wasteline to the tune of 12.65kgs.”
Fishcare would like to increase our participation of this program and are looking for more Fishcare Seal the Loop champions like Remy to assist in the program. If you are interested, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Feature image from https://www.zoo.org.au/get-involved/act-for-wildlife/seal-the-loop