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Fishing Line
Discarded fishing line is a great hazard to shorebirds. One thing you, as an individual, can do to help is to pick up any fishing line you happen to find on the beaches while birding. As you might guess, the popular fishing spots, such as those near jetties, have the greater concentrations of discarded fishing line. Because rocks frequently snag lines, the line remaining on the fishing reel is often discarded and replaced with a full-length line.

Over the years Ron Bourque has rescued three brant and a red-throated loon from fishing lines and hooks. He found a dead great black-backed gull on a runway of Floyd Bennett Field, in the summer of June 2000, with a fishing line attached. Ron is collecting information on the danger of discarded fishing line to birds.

Request for Sightings

Have you observed any birds (dead or alive) entangled in fishing line within the past year?

If you have, please contact:

Ron Bourque

Please note the date, location, species of bird, and whether you have a photograph. Even if you are unsure about the date of past sightings, please do not hesitate to forward this information.


Jean Bourque collected dis- carded fishing line in July on 100 yards of beach at Raptor Point at the northeast end of Floyd Bennett Field.

After their first collection of fishing line, the Bourques brought this situation to the attention of the Assistant Su- perintendent of the Jamaica Bay District, only to be told there was nothing the National Park Service could do about "our problem."

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