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Tropic news. Volume 9. Issue 7.

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Title:
Tropic news. Volume 9. Issue 7.
Series Title:
Tropic news
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United States Virgin Islands. Department of Planning and Natural Resources. Division of Fish and Wildlife.
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United States Virgin Islands. Department of Planning and Natural Resources. Division of Fish and Wildlife.
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English

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Caribbean ( LCSH )
Newspapers -- Caribbean ( LCSH )
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serial ( sobekcm )
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North America -- United States Virgin Islands
Caribbean

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University of Florida
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Full Text



TROPIC NEWS


DEPARTMENT OF PLANNING AND NATURAL
RESOURCES
April 1997


DIVISION OF FISH AND WILDLIFE

Volume 9 Number 7


SPORT FISH RESTORATION ACT:
Conservation's Best Kept Secret

0^T t The Sport Fish Restoration
q jAct is said to be one of the top
Conservation laws of the 20th
century yet this Congressional
S O Act is practically unknown by
TiR )^ those who contribute to and
gain from its provisions. In a
recent survey, only 5% of the
anglers and boaters questioned had ever heard of
the 10-year old law, even though it's their taxes
paid on fishing gear and boat fuel that support the
fund.
The Sport Fish Restoration Act (SFRA) accord-
ing to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, has
yielded benefits that have transformed the Ameri-
can fisheries scene from one of depletion and de-
cline to one of renewed vigor and optimism.
Supporters have a lot to be optimistic about,
based on a mere sampling of SFRA achievement:
200,000 acres of land have been purchased;
Upon this land, more than 3,000 fishing
access sites and boat-launching facilities have
been built;
Nearly 10, 000 other sites have been im-
proved and maintained;
1,500 pumpouts and 800 dump stations were
funded and installed to reduce human waste
pollution from boaters; and
7,000 fish population surveys and 1,700 habi-
tat investigations have been supported.
The states have also used Sport Fish Restora-
tion funds to forge constructive partnerships with
the private sector and service organizations to
bolster fishing and boating programs. An outstand-
ing collaborative effort is the Aquatic Resource
Education Program, which has served two million
youngsters in 42 states. The Virgin Islands Divi-
sion of Fish and Wildlife, Environmental Educa-
tion Program, receives a portion of its funding from
this program.
The 105th Congress will revisit the Sport Fish
Restoration Act when it deliberates reauthoriza-
tion of the gas tax transfer from the Highway
Trust Fund.
This editorial reflects the opinion of the American League
nf Anorlre anA Prnitfora


Virgin Islands Gamefishing Club
Dolphin Tournament

The turnout
was great for the
Second Annual
Dolphin Tourna-
ment held by the
Virgin Islands
Game Fishing Club. The tournament was held on
Saturday, April 19, 1997 at Latitude 18 on the
eastend of St. Thomas.
Prizes were awarded to the top 20 largest dol-
phins. The winning fish was a 40.4 lbs dolphin
caught on the Fish Hawk. Of the 123 total number
of fish caught, here is the break down:


Dolphin
Wahoo
Tuna
Kingfish
Barracuda
Cero
Bonito


There were 25 boats registered, 20 of the regis-
tered boats checked in on tournament day and 16
boats caught fish. Fishing time ran from 5:30 am to
2:30 pm with 3:00 pm being the deadline for boats
returning to the weigh station. There was a total of
82 anglers.
Division of Fish and Wildlife staff worked as
weigh masters. The division uses the information
on species, numbers and weights of fish caught for
resource management. A Fish Attracting Device
( FAD), deployed by the division earlier this
month, was said to be useful by several of the
fishermen.

Note: The dolphins caught were not the mam-
mal but a species of dolphin fish (Coryphaena
hippuru).

Quote
We abuse the land (sea) because we regard it as
a commodity belonging to us. When we see land
(sea) as a community to which we belong, we may
begin to use it with love and respect.
Aldo Leopold


I I I I I rd ~ I~gs~-~B~6BfdB~ ~prh~C~e~B~gL~%B~gL~e~





U*;p~- ..rU- -'"Ur..- -: -- -7 -1 ~ ~1j1i;;!)


A Natural Connection

The dodo was a flightless bird found on the
island of Mauritius in the Indian Ocean by Portu-
guese explorers in 1505. By 1681, passing sailors
and others had hunted this bird to extinction
because it was so easily captured. This bird has
long been used as a classical example of extinction
due to human activities.
Also found on Mauritius is a large tree known as
the tambalacoque. Scientists realized in the 1970's
that the tree was in danger of extinction. The few
trees left were over 300 years old and seeds pro-
duced by them were not germinating.
Who would have thought that there was a con-
nection between the extinct dodo and the tambala-
coque? But, it turns out that there may be. The
dodo used to feed on the fruit and seeds of this tree.
The tree may have adapted to the problem of
having its seeds crushed in the gizzard of the dodo
by making a thick, tough outer hull on the seed.
However, the dodo's gizzard would abrade the
outer hull sufficiently to enable germination of the
seed. Without this abrasion, the seed can't germi-
nate. Thus without the Dodo, the tambalacoque
trees became fewer and fewer.
The potential extinction of the tambalacoque
has been averted by the Mauritius Forestry Ser-
vice. They now abrade the seeds and are replanting
trees on the island. This is yet another example of
how human activities can have drastic unforeseen
effects on the web of life on our planet.

Information extracted from S. Valdes-Cogliano, Endan-
gered Species Update, 13(10&11):11.


DFW Bids Farewell to Meyers

The staff at the Division of Fish and Wildlife
takes this time to extend best wishes to Chief of
Fisheries, Stephen Meyers. After four years with
DFW, Meyers will be departing this month for a
position with the National Marine Fisheries Ser-
vice in Silver Springs, Maryland. His new position
will be Program Manager for a Marine Recre-
ational Fisheries Statistics Survey.
In a letter to Commissioner Beulah Dalmida-
Smith from Acting Assistant Regional Director of
the Fish and Wildlife Service, Carlos A. Diaz, Mr.
Meyers is commended for his performance during
his tenure as Sport Fish Restoration Coordinator.
Meyers developed the Division's first fisheries
resources planning document that identified priori-
ties needed for effective resource management.
Federal Aid Program grants were restructured
based on this planning document. Such changes
will allow the Division of Fish and Wildlife to work
more efficiently in managing fisheries resources
while complying with Federal Aid program stan-
dards.


Trees were saved by printing on recycled paper
Trees were saved by printing on recycled paper


. y' *.
-1 -i'


This newsletter was funded by the US
Fish and Wildlife Service, Sport Fish and
Wildlife Restoration Acts, the Caribbean
Fishery Management Council and the
Government of the VI.


Donna M. Griffin Editor
Ralf H. Boulon Jr. Chief of Environmental Education
=8- ............... ...... .... ... .


GOVERNMENT OF THE VIRGIN ISLANDS
OF THE UNITED STATES
******
Department of Planning and Natural Resources
Division of Fish and Wildlife
6291 Estate Nazareth 101
St. Thomas, USVI 00802-1104
(809)775-6762 (ST.T.), (809)772-1955 (ST.X.)


BULK RATE
U.S. POSTAGE PAID
CHARLOTTE AMALIE, V.I.
PERMIT NO. 35


Address Correction Requested


-- ------~ -------- -- ----- --




Full Text

PAGE 1

Volume 9 Number 7 Virgin Islands Gamefishing Club Dolphin Tournament SPORT FISH RESTORATION ACT: Conservation's Best Kept Secret O\\,T -1:4 ~ ~ ~ ~ z ~ ..A9 ~OR ~'\. .. The turnout was great for the . Second Annual Dolphin Tourna. ment held by the .. Virgin Islands Game Fishing Club. The tournament was held on Saturday, April 19, 1997 at Latitude 18 on the eastend of St. Thomas. Prizes were awarded to the top 20 largest dolphins. The winning fish was a 40.4 lbs dolphin caught on the Fish Hawk. Of the 123 total number of fish caught, here is the break down: 98 9 4 6 4 1 1 Dolphin Wahoo Tuna Kingfish Barracuda Cero Bonito There were 25 boats registered, 20 of the registered boats checked in on tournament day and 16 boats caught fish. Fishing time ran from 5:30 am to 2:30 pm with 3:00 pm being the deadline for boats returning to the weigh station. There was a total of 82 anglers. Division of Fish and Wildlife staff worked as weigh masters. The division uses the information on species, numbers and weights of fish caught for resource management. A Fish Attracting Device ( FAD) , deployed by the division earlier this month, was said to be useful by several of the fishermen. Note: The dolphins caught were not the mammal but a species of dolphin fish (Coryphaena hippuru). The Sport Fish Restoration Act is said to be one of the top conservation laws of the 20th . century yet this Congressional Act is practically unknown by those who contribute to and -gain from its provisions. In a recent survey, only 5% of the anglers and boaters questioned had ever heard of the 10-year old law, even though it's their taxes paid on fishing gear and boat fuel that support the fund. . The Sport Fish Restoration Act (SFRA) according to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, has yielded benefits that have transformed the American fisheries scene from one of depletion and decline to one of renewed vigor and optimism. Supporters have a lot to be optimistic about, based on a mere sampling ofSFRA achievement: . 200,000 acres of land have been purchased; . . Upon this land, more than 3,000 fishing access sites and boat-launching facilities have been built; . Nearly 10, 000 other sites have been improved and maintained; . 1,500 pump outs and 800 dump stations were funded and installed to reduce human waste pollution from boaters; and . 7,000 fish population surveys and 1,700 habitat investigations have been supported. The states have also used Sport Fish Restoration funds to forge constructive partnerships with the private sector and service organizations to bolster fishing and boating programs. An outstanding collaborative effort is the Aquatic Resource Education Program, which has served two million youngsters in 42 states. The Virgin Islands Division of Fish and Wildlife, Environmental Education Program, receives a portion of its funding from this program. The 105th Congress will revisit the Sport Fish Restoration Act when it deliberates reauthorization of the gas tax transfer from the Highway Trust Fund. This editorial reflects the opinion of the American League nf Anal"".. Ann RnAt"".. Quote We abuse the land (sea) because we regard it as a commodity belonging to us. When we see land (sea) as a community to which we belong, we may begin to use it with love and respect. Aldo Leopold

PAGE 2

A Natural Connection DFW Bids Farewell to Meyers The staff at the Division of Fish and Wildlife takes this time to extend best wishes to Chief of Fisheries, Stephen Meyers. After four years with DFW, Meyers will be .departing this month for a position with the National Marine Fisheries Service in Silver Springs, Maryland. His new position will be Program Manager for a Marine Recreational Fisheries Statistics Survey. In a letter to Commissioner Beulah DalmidaSmith from Acting Assistant Regional Director of the Fish and Wildlife Service, Carlos A. Diaz, Mr. Meyers is commended for his performance during his tenure as Sport Fish Restoration Coordinator. Meyers developed the Division's first fisheries resources planning document that identified priorities needed for effective resource management. Federal Aid Program grants were restructured based on this planning document. Such changes will allow the Division of Fish and Wildlife to work more efficiently in managing fisheries resources while complying with Federal Aid program standards. ~ The dodo was a flightless bird found on the island of Mauritius in the Indian Ocean by Portuguese explorers in 1505. By 1681, passing sailors and others had hunted this bird to extinction because it was so easily captured. This bird has long been used as a classical example of extinction due to human activities. Also found on Mauritius is a large tree known as the tambalacoque. Scientists realized in the 1970's that the tree was in danger of extinction. The few trees left were over 300 years old and seeds produced by them were not germinating. Who would have thought that there was a connection between the extinct dodo and the tambalacoque? But, it turns out that there may be. The dodo used to feed on the fruit and seeds of this tree. The tree may have adapted to the problem of having its seeds crushed in the gizzard of the dodo by making a thick, tough outer hull on the seed. However, the dodo's gizzard would abrade the outer hull sufficiently to enable germination of the seed. Without this abrasion, the seed can't germinate. Thus without the Dodo, the tambalacoque trees became fewer and fewer. The potential extinction of the tambalacoque has been averted by the Mauritius Forestry Service. They now abrade the seeds and are replanting trees on the island. This is yet another example of how human activities can have drastic unforeseen effects on the web of life on our planet. Trees were saved by printing on recycled paper Information extracted from S. Valdes-Cogliano, Endan. gered Species Update, 13(10&11):11. This newsletter was funded by the US Fish and Wildlife Service, Sport Fish and Wildlife Restoration Acts, the Caribbean ~ Fishery Management Council and the Government of the VI. Donna M. Griffin Editor Ralf H. Boulon Jr. Chief of Environmental Education BULK RATE u.s. POSTAGE PAID CHARLOTTE AMALIE, V.I. PERMIT NO. 35 GOVERNMENT OF THE VIRGIN ISLANDS OF THE UNITED STATES ****** Department of Planning and Natural Resources Division of Fish and Wildlife 6291 Estate Nazareth 101 St. Thomas, USVI 00802-1104 (809)775-6762 (ST.T.), (809)772-1955 (ST.X.) Address Correction Requested