Project Page

Reducing Threats to Sea Turtles through Removal of In-water Marine Debris along Florida’s Gulf Coast

Implementing Organization

State of Florida


DWH Project Funding


Known Leveraged Funding


Funding Organization

Natural Resource Damage Assessment Trustees (NRDA)

Funding Program

Natural Resource Damage Assessment NRDA


Project Category


Project Actions

Species Restoration

Targeted Resources

Sea Turtles

Project Description

The project will reduce the threat and impacts (e.g., entanglement, entrapment, ingestion) of marine debris to Deepwater Horizon-injured sea turtle species in Florida, with a primary focus on in-water derelict fishing gear (e.g., monofilament fishing line, nets, trap/pot gear, other recreational/commercial fishing equipment that has been lost, abandoned, or discarded). This project will support actions identified in the Florida Marine Debris Reduction Plan. The Florida Trustee Implementation Group (FL TIG) would coordinate implementation of this project with the Regionwide Trustee Implementation Group (RW TIG), which is currently planning restoration for sea turtles. Specifically, the project would: • Identify marine debris “hotspots” that impact, or have the potential to impact, sea turtles in Florida. Data would be compiled from federal and state agencies and other relevant partners (e.g., Sea Turtle Stranding and Salvage Network partners, rescue/rehabilitation organizations, NGOs, dive operators); • Reduce the number of, and potential for, marine debris-related incidences at up to 16 hotspots using the following techniques, as appropriate: 1. Remove marine debris: Includes enhancing support (e.g., capacity, equipment, fuel) for debris removal events, including the use of professional divers or marine salvage crews around deep structures. Debris removal may be a one-time or multi-event effort depending on the degree/frequency of debris accumulation, impact on sea turtles, cost, and logistics. Debris removal may be conducted in coordination with or to enhance existing marine debris networks (e.g., Gulf Coast clean-ups) or as on "More Info" link below


Gareth Leonard
(850) 617-9452
Project Website
Project Partners


Affiliated Institutions

For official trustee information regarding the Deepwater Horizon NRDA, including information regarding the NRDA process and the status of projects, see

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