Letter to Chairman Robert Shipp, Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council, Regarding Fish Traps

The use of fish traps was phased out in the Gulf of Mexico in 2007. The reasons cited for this decision by the Gulf Council include incidental catch of non-targeted species, enforcement and non-compliance issues, long-term ghost-fishing, and habitat destruction. The Pew Environment Group supports that Council action and is opposed to reintroducing fish traps in the Gulf of Mexico. Absent new data that clearly demonstrates significant conservation benefits in comparison to other gear currently approved for use in the Gulf, we strongly encourage the Gulf Council to remove from consideration alternatives in Amendment 32 that would re-introduce fish traps, and discourage the Council from considering their re-introduction in any future amendment.