Tag Archives: Florida’s Gulf Coast

20 years after gill net ban, poaching persists along west coast

It was just after midnight Monday when two commercial fisherman saw the blue lights of law enforcement and made a break for it near the mouth of the Manatee River. The water chase was brief, wildlife officers say, because in the end the fisherman got tangled up in their own illegal net. It’s been 20 years since Florida voters, 72 percent of the vote, approved a constitutional amendment banning the use of gill nets within nine miles of Florida’s Gulf Coast and three miles of the Atlantic Coast. The ban was hotly contested and ultimately put out of business about 1,500 commercial fishermen whose livelihood depended on the practice. Read the article here 20:34