Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Op Ed - Wade Osborne Shark Free Marinas

Captain Wade Osborne has been fishing Tampa Bay and the Pinellas Suncoast for over 30 years. He also hosts "Afishionado Radio" airing Saturdays from 8-10 a.m. (EDT) on Tampa Bay’s AM 1340 WTAN, Dade City’s AM 1350 WDCF and streaming at

The Shark-Free Marina Initiative has my full support.

Why? Because during the last few months Florida has experienced numerous highly publicized shark kills. Some for world record status, others for bragging rights. Then the lifeless carcass, many pregnant females are dumped back to sea.

The commercial fishing industry takes the biggest toll on the shark populations and there’s little that can be done in the short term to stop it, but we must press lawmakers for more legislation. This huge waste of a precious resource is having a detrimental effect on the Maine ecosystem and the negative effects are beginning to take hold on the marine environment.

With this I mind, I’ve often wondered what I and other concerned citizens can do to protect these large apex predators. Changing state and federal laws takes years, and more protection is something that needs to be addressed. Meanwhile by supporting The Shark-Free Marina Initiative all of us can start to make a positive impact now.

Here’s how you can get involved. If you keep your boat at a municipal or private marina, ask if they would like make their facility a shark free kill zone by supporting The Shark-Free Marina Initiative. Lecturers can mention the initiative during appearances at fishing clubs and events. And most importantly we can all make shark anglers aware of the value in releasing their catch live and well.

Please join me and show your support for The Shark-Free Marina Initiative.

For charter information call 813-286-3474 or visit

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