Marine police are discouraging local fishers from using Clorox bottles and other plastic containers as buoys to mark their fish pots.
Designated Person Ashore (DPA) Courtney Rodney, who has responsibility for the Marine unit of the Royal Montserrat Police Service (RMPS) said they have been working on a Code of Practice for Fishers here.
In a Facebook post on the RMPS page, DPA Rodney said last Friday, he was in conversation with Dan Edwards, Senior Fisheries Advisor from the Joint Nature Conservation Committee who has been working with fishers throughout the week.
“During the conversation it was mentioned that ‘Using Clorox bottles as markers for fish pots should be discouraged’,” Rodney stated. “Clorox bottles are not designed for use in the harsh marine environment and can be source of marine litter. As they break apart, they can also contribute to the problem of microplastics. Studies have shown plastics can be eaten by coral, fish, turtles, and marine birds where they can cause harm. The long-term effects of microplastics on ecosystems and on our health are still not fully understood.”
The police official added that during a recent patrol conducted by Captain Samuel and crew on board MV Heliconia Star, a number of plastic containers were being used by fishers as a buoy marker.
DPA Rodney is encouraging local fishers to use proper buoys which are safer for residents and the marine environment of Montserrat.