Docstoc

Material Reviewed - 1994-01 TAB B

Document Sample
Material Reviewed - 1994-01 TAB B Powered By Docstoc
					                    REPORT OF THE CORAL MANAGEMENT C O M M m E

                               CLEAFWATER BEACH, FLORIDA

                                 MONDAY, JANUARY 17, 1994


    The committee viewed the draft of Coral Amendment 2 which would provide management
    for the live rock fishery. Also reviewed were public hearingsummaries Vab B, No. 4) and
    letters from the public (Tab B, No. 5). Also considered were recommendationsfrom the
    advisory panels, Scientific and Statistical Committee (Tab B, No. 7), and the federal
    comments.

    The staff compiled a list of eight additional issues to be considered from the above reviews
    and these appear in Tab B, No. 3(a), and the committee reviewed these issues.

    The committee makes the following recommendationsfor the amendment (Tab B, No. 3):

    1. Definition of live rock (page 6, Section B.l):

    Motion: Delete from the list of                 organisms associatedwith live rock all
    crustaceans, mullusks, and echin                                        encrusting sessile
    organismswould be included in
                                                                                              -   -

    2. Problems and Objectives: In accord with the recommendation of General Counsel
    include the Item 1 from Tab B, No. 3(a).

    Motion: Add live rock to Objedve 2 to read: 'Minimize, as appropriate, adverse human
    impacts on coral, coral reds, and live rock

    Redefinition of octocorals (Page 7 Section 8.2):

    Motion: Redefineallowable octocorals as ' e r a nanencmsting species o t e subclass
                                                                             f h
    Octocorallia, except the prohibitedsea fans Goraonia&@ellurn and Gommhsmtah~,
    including only the substrate covered by and within one inch of the holdfast

       ionale; This would prevent the taking of large pieces of live rock with allowable
    octocorals while providing sufficient material for anchoring the octocoral.

    Phase out Live Rock Harvest, (Page 10, Section C .2.b):
/

    Motion: Establish a hanrest quota of 400 tons o loose, rubble (non attached) rodc for 1994.
                                                  f
    This would be reduced by 2 % 00 300 tons) in 1995; 50% (to 200 tons) in 1996; 75% (100
                               5
    tons) in 1997; no wild harvest in 1998.

         nale; This would phase out wild harvest to allow transfer to aquaculture. Harvest of
    loose rock would prevent chipping and prying of rock from reefs and ledges.

    Aquaculture:

              tf
    Motion: Saf in conjunction with NOAA Counsel should develop a report by the end of
    1994 outlining detailed proceduresfor acquiring an- aquacuftureoperation in federal (or
    state) waters.
•   Optimum yield (Page 14, Section D):

    Motion: Add a new OY as suggestedby NOAA Counsel: 'OY for live rock is to be that
    established by quota or which may be allowed by permit'.

    Rationale; This would provide for the proposed quota.

    Motion: Prwide s a f with editorial licenseto address editorial comments and submit to
                     tf
                                        -
    NMFS for Secretarial approval subjed to approval by the SAFMC.

    (Note: requires a roll call vote)
                               Coral Motions Januarv Council Meeting

Motion: Delete from the list of living marine organisms associated with live rock all crustaceans,
mollusks, and echinoderms because they are motile (only encrusting sessile organisms would be
included in the definition.)

Amendment: delete "because they are motile" from the motion.

Sub motion: Live rock: living marine organisms or an assemblage thereof attached to a hard substrate
(including dead coral or rock). For example such Living Marine Organisms associated with hard
Bottoms, Banks, Reefs, and Live Rock may include, but are not limited to: see list on pages 6, 7 o f
draft amendment 2

(delete crustaceans, mullusks, and echinoderms). Motion carried

Sub motion: delay action on the coral issue until the next scheduled Council meeting (March). Motion
withdrawn.

Motion: Add live rock t o Objective 2 to read: "Minimize, as appropriate, adverse human impacts o n
coral, coral reefs, and live rock."

Sub motion: Add live rock to Objective 2 to read: "Minimize, as appropriate, adverse human impacts
on coral, coral reefs, live rock, and live bottom habitat."
sub-motion carried.                                                                           -  -
Motion: Redefine allowable octocorals as "erect, non-encrusting species of the subclass Octocorallia,
except the prohibited sea fans Gornonia flabellurn and Goraonia ventalina, including only the substrate
covered by and within one inch of the holdfast. Motion carried

Motion: Establish a harvest quota of 400 tons of loose, rubble (non attached) rock for 1994. This
would be reduced by 25% (to 300 tons) in 1995; 50% (to 200 tons) in 1996; 75% (100 tons) i n
1997; no wild harvest in 1998.

Sub motion: Establish a stable harvest quota of 400 tons per annum of loose, rubble (non attached)
rock 1994 through 1997 followed by a prohibition of wild live rock harvest in 1998 providing that
mitigation of harvested material be provided with acceptable material on a 211 ratio of mitigated
material to harvested material.

Sub motion failed due t o lack of second.

Sub motion: Live rock harvest be allowed without prohibition for the next three years in the EEZ south
of Cape San Blas to the southern extent of Collier County only.

Sub motion: Establish a harvest quota of 400 tons of wild live rock for 1995 to be reduced by 25%
in 1996, 50% in 1997, 75% in 1998, with no wild harvest in 1999. motion failed.

Sub motion: Establish a harvest quota of 400 tons of wild live rock for 1995 through 1998, with n o
wild harvest in 1999 and subsequent years. If a federal live rock aquaculture permitting system is not
in effect by 1996, wild harvest will remain at the 1995 level.

Motion carried. 9-7

Motion: Staff in conjunction with NOAA Counsel should develop a report by the end of 1994 outlining
detailed procedures for acquiring an aquaculture operation in federal (or state) waters. Motion carried.
Motion: Add a new OY as suggested by NOAA Counsel: "OY for live rock is to be that established
by quota or which may be allowed by permitn. Motion carried.

Motion: Provide staff with editorial license to address editorial comments and submit to NMFS for
Secretarial approval - subject to approval by the SAFMC. Tabled and removed.

motion carried

motion: require a federal permit in excess of 10 pounds

sub motion: allowance of non-commercial possesion of 2 gallons of wild live rock be allowed per
person, per trip (possession limit). motion carried.

amend include the words while

Motion: Require a permit for the possession or harvest of live rock from aquaculture operations.
NMFS permits shall be available only to those individuals who have demonstrated that they have
deposited rock or substrate in the permitted site

To obtain permits for live rock aquaculture in the EEZ permittees must have an approved COE permit
to place substrate in the EEZ, and have demonstrated that they have deposited approved material in
the permitted area. such a permit shall be subject to an administrative fee. In order to harvest or
possess live rock from an aquaculture site requires a NMFS permit. Harvest from the area may only
be done by the permitttee or his written designee.                                            -   -
motion carried.

Motion: In addition to any applicable state license or permit, require a federal permit for the harvest
and possesion of wild live rock in the EEZ during the phase out period. Permits shall be limited t o
persons who have commercially landed               required reported wild live rock landings prior to the
control date.                                             3

Motion carried




coral-mo
                                                        DRAFT

                                                 AMENDMENT 2

                                                       TO THE

                                      FISHERY MANAGEMENT PLAN

                                                         FOR


                                         CORAL AND CORAL REEFS

                                         OF THE GULF OF MEXICO

                                                         AND

                                               SOUTH ATLANTIC

                                INCLUDING A DRAFT SUPPLEMENTAL
                                                                                                                 -   -




                               ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT STATEMENT

                                     REGULATORY IMPACT REVIEW

                                                         AND

                           INITIAL REGULATORY FLEXIBILITY ANALYSIS




                                                  NOVEMBER 1 9 9 3

                            GULF OF MEXICO FISHERY MANAGEMENT COUNCIL
                                       LINCOLN CENTER, SUITE 3 3 1
                                   5 4 0 1 WEST KENNEDY BOULEVARD
                                      TAMPA, FLORIDA 33609-2468
                                              8 1 3-228-281 5

                           SOUTH ATLANTIC FISHERY MANAGEMENT COUNCIL
                                  SOUTHPARK BUILDING, SUITE 3 0 6
                                       1 SOUTHPARK CIRCLE
                             CHARLESTON, SOUTH CAROLINA 29407-4699

This is a publication of the GUMof Mexico and South Atlantic fishery Management Councils pursuant to National Oceanic
end Atmospheric Administration Award Nos. NA4 7FC0005 and NA47FC0006.
                                           COVER SHEET

RESPONSIBLE AGENCIES:                  Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council
                                       Lincoln Center, Suite 331
                                       5401 West Kennedy Boulevard
                                       Tampa, Florida 33609-2468

                                       South Atlantic Fishery Management Council
                                       Southpark Building, Suite 306
                                       1 Southpark Circle
                                       Charleston, South Carolina 29407-4699

                                       National Marine Fisheries Service
                                       9450 Koger Boulevard
                                       St. Petersburg, Florida 33702

TITLE OF PROPOSED ACTION:              Draft Amendment 2 to the Fishery
                                       Management Plan for Coral and
                                       Coral Reefs of the Gulf of Mexico
                                       and South Atlantic

TYPE OF DOCUMENT:                      Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (DSEISL
                                                                                                        -
CONTACT FOR FURTHER INFORMATION:
                                                                                                -   -


               Terrance Leary
               Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council
               Lincoln Center, Suite 331
               5401 West Kennedy Boulevard
               Tampa, FL 33609
               813-228-281 5

               Roger Pugliese
               South Atlantic Fishery Management Council
               Southpark Building, Suite 306
               One Southpark Circle
               Charleston, SC 29407-4699
               803-57 1-4366

COMMENTS DUE BY: January 15, 1994

ABSTRACT:

The Gulf of Mexico and South Atlantic Councils (Councils) are considering an amendment to the
Fishery Management Plan for Coral and Coral Reefs of the Gulf of Mexico and the South Atlantic
(FMP) that could add "live rock" t o the fishery management unit. Live rock means certain living
marine organisms or an assemblage thereof attached to a hard substrate (including dead coral or
rock]. In addition to corals, these organisms include anemones, sponges, tube worms, molluscs,
crustaceans, echinoderms, bryozoans, sea squirts, and algae.

Management could include harvest limitations or prohibition t o prevent fishery habitat loss,
permitting of harvesters, and a provision for aquaculture of live rock.
                                                  TABLE OF CONTENTS

Section                                                                                                                   Page


SUMMARY         . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1
1.0 INTRODUCTION . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
    Description of the Fishew
    Purpose and Need

2.0 ALTERNATIVE INCLUDING THE PROPOSED ACTION                                .........................5
3.0 AFFECTED ENVIRONMENT                    ........................................                                           14

4.0 REGULATORY IMPACT REVIEW
    AND INITIAL REGULATORY FLEXIBILITY ANALYSIS                              . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17
5.0 ENVIRONMENTAL CONSEQUENCES                . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27
6.0   TIME AND LOCATION OF PUBLIC HEARINGS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30

7.0   LIST OF PREPARERS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31
                                                                                                                  ;        '



8.0   LIST OF AGENCIES AND ORGANIZATIONS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 1

9.0 OTHER APPLICABLE LAW                . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32
10.0 REFERENCES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32

FIGURES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . F-1

APPENDIX . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . A-1
SUMMARY:

Live rock is a calcareous material containing an assemblage of living marine organisms. It is
harvested by hand from the substrate by divers and is sold for use in marine aquaria. The harvest
accelerated in the 1980s, with most production being off Florida. That state became concerned
with the removal of hard bottom habitat for other marine species and prohibited harvest in its
waters. The Councils propose management of this resource.

Alternatives under consideration include:

A. No action
0. Definitions for Management Unit
   ( 1 Defining live rock and adding it to the management unit
   (2) Redefining octocorals
C. Management of live rock
   ( 11 Harvest limits
        a. Establishing an annual harvest quota for live rock
        b. Limiting access and providing effon limit for live rock
   (2) Harvest Prohibition
        a. Prohibiting live rock harvest
        b. Phasing out live rock harvest
        c. Providing for aquaculture of otherwise prohibited live rock                                 -
   (3) Provide for different management in the jurisdictional areas of the two councils            _
   (4) Permits
        (a) Providing for a federal permit for wild live rock harvest and possession
        (b) Providing for a federal permit for possession and harvest of live rock from aquaculture
            operation
        (c) Providing for a federal permit to take prohibited live rock for scientific and educational
            purposes

D. Optimum Yield

Issues and concerns to be addressed in the Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS)
are: what are the direct and indirect effects of live rock harvests on substrate availability and reef
fish productivity? (Habitat Loss); how will restrictions on live rock harvests affect the aquarium
trade? (Aquarium Sales); how can we ensure the viability of the entire coral reef ecosystem?
(Ecosystem Management); how does the continued collection of live rock affect non-consumptive
usersldivers? (Aesthetic Values); and what is the most consistent management regime for live rock
in the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ), state waters, within protected zones such as National
Marine Sanctuaries, state and federal parks? (Consistent Regulations).
                  Abbreviations and Acronyms Used in this Document


CFMC             Caribbean Fishery Management Council
DSEIS            Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement
EEZ              Exclusive Economic Zone
FDEP ( = FDNR)   Florida Department of Environmental Protection (successor t o Florida
                 Department of Natural Resources)
FMFC             Florida Marine Fisheries Commission
FMP              Fishery Management Plan
FMRl             Florida Marine Research Institute
GMFMC            Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council
NMFS             National Marine Fisheries Service
OY               Optimum Yield
RFA              Regulatory Flexibility Act
RIR              Regulatory lmpact Review
SAFMC            South Atlantic Fishery Management Council
SPL              (Florida) Saltwater Products License
1.O INTRODUCTION

Description of the Fishery

With the recent development of technology to maintain marine aquaria, a market developed for
calcarious material to decorate the tanks and to maintain the proper water chemistry. This
material, composed of calcium carbonate and the attached marine life occurs naturally off the
Florida coast and consists of coral reef rubble and limestone. Coral reefs and hard corals are
protected by federal and Florida regulations.

Live rock was marketed in the 1970s, but the fishery expanded greatly in the 1980s and early
1990s to meet the demand from the development of public and private marine aquaria.

Technical advances in saltwater aquarium filtration systems during the mid-1980s led t o the
feasibility of so-called 'mini-reef" systems dominated by invertebrates. These organisms and
nitrogen-fixing bacteria serve as a form of filtration to reduce toxins and filter out excess organics
as they feed (Blackburn, 1988). Demand for ornamental fish began to include "live rock,"
consisting generally of calcareous substrates encrusted with a variety of living marine organisms.

Live rock is now being air shipped throughout the United States and to Canada and England. The
marine aquarium hobby at first concentrated on fishes because neither the equipment nor the
knowledge allowed the keeping of other organisms. Gradually, as knowledge and equipment
improved, more and more invertebrates were kept successfully. In recent years, the development -
of "Living Reef' aquarium systems that were able to maintain stable ecologies in closed-system
aquariums has enabled aquarists to set up and maintain tiny bits of reef ecology in their homes
(Feddern, pers. comm.). Florida live rock landings in 1992 reached 390 tons (FDEP).

Robert Stewart, Jr. (pers. comm.), reports that live rock "carries" the marine aquarium trade
industry of Florida and estimates that without the sale of live rock, his company would lose 50-75
percent of their gross revenue, since the live rock is very important in stimulating the sales of
related marine life products.

Most of the live rock collectors are in the marine life fishery, which also harvests tropicals for the
aquarium trade. Live rock is harvested by divers who selectively pick-up small pieces from the
bottom. Harvesters maintain that they do not remove large quantities from a single site, but range
over wide areas of hard bottoms choosing aesthetically pleasing pieces that would beautify aquaria.
One square mile of hard bottom is estimated t o contain about 600,000 tons of live rock in the top
one foot of surface. The Fishery Management Plan for Reef Fish Resources in the Gulf of Mexico
estimates there to be 19,691 square miles of live bottom within 55 fathoms in the Gulf (GMFMC,
19911.


Purpose and Need

In 1989, the Florida Department of Natural Resources (FDNR) (now Department of Environmental
Protection) determined that live rock harvest (i.e., the collection of rocks with marine organisms
attached for use in home aquariums) was detrimental to the Florida Reef Tract and other hard
bottom habitat areas (Wheaton, 1989). Accordingly, Florida prohibited live rock landings from
state waters in May, 1989; however, effort shifted to the EEZ off Florida (Florida Marine Fisheries
Commission (FMFC, 1991).
Although the councils discussed the live rock issue, no action was taken because the Florida
Marine Fisheries Commission had decided to begin rulemaking regarding live rock landings from the
EEZ off Florida (FMFC, 1991). During the course of its rulemaking, the FMFC noted that
approximately 35 individuals were reporting landings of about 300 tons (1991 1 of live rock from
waters adjacent to the Florida Reef Tract, Florida's east coast reefs, and the west central coast
(FMFC, 1992). (Reported landings in 1992 totaled about 400 tons [Florida Marine Research
Institute (FMRI, 19931). (See Figures 1A, 1B and 6).

Beginning in March 1991, FMFC held five public hearings and two workshops throughout the state
regarding the impacts of live rock harvests on coral conservation, habitat preservation, and the
effects of harvest restrictions on the marine aquarium industry.
During its rulemaking the FMFC noted that the only current net production of the carbonate
substrate underlying live rock occurs on living coral reefs; and, in Florida, these areas are either in
equilibrium or eroding. FDNR personnel testified that more than 90 percent of the live rock
examined at the request of enforcement agents contained visible colonies of prohibited corals. The
FMFC concluded that live rock removal (11 can violate state and Federal laws that prohibit the
taking of corals. (2) reduces the surface area and topographic complexity of Florida's coral reefs
and other live bottom areas, and (3) removes entire micro-communities along with targeted
aquarium species.

The Councils, along with other state and Federal agencies, also received a petition in June of 1991
from Project ReefKeeper requesting rulemaking action to prohibit the taking and landing of live rock
within their areas of jurisdiction. The purpose of the request was to protect coral reefs and their
associated marine life (Stone, 19911. The Councils and NMFS advised Project ReeKeeper that they
were deferring action to obtain additional data.

In June 1992, the Florida Governor and Cabinet approved the FMFC rule t o phase-out live rock
landings over a 3-year period, ending on June 30, 1995. The phase-out period was designed to
allow development of live rock aquaculture which would be exempt from the harvest ban. The
phase-out was to be accomplished by a 25 percent annual reduction in landings (baSed on the
1991 reponed landings) accompanied by a 500 pound daily vessel limit. The quotas set were 225
                                                                -
tons for 1993, 150 tons in 1994, 75 tons in 1995. A July 1 June 3 0 season was established,
and the 1993 quota was filled by February 12, 1993.

On March 31, 1993, a U.S. District Coun Judge issued a preliminary injunction to prevent
enforcement of the state's quota or vessel landing limits relating to possession or landing of live
rock taken in the EEZ. Florida live rock fishermen argued that the Magnuson Act supersedes state
landing laws and that the Councils had made 'an affirmative and conscious decision" not to
prohibit the taking of live rock in the EEZ. The councils had deferred action because the
implementation of a phase-out of live rock landings by the state of Florida addressed what
appeared to be a localized management issue. Subsequently, they became concerned that the
removal of live rock from the EEZ was now unregulated, and there now is interest in harvest from
North Carolina through Alabama. In April, 1993 the SAFMC approved a motion to include live rock
in the Coral Fishery Management Plan and reactivate the South Atlantic Coral Advisory Panel. In
May, 1993 the Gulf Council, on being advised of live rock landings in Alabama and on the request
of that state and Florida, initiated development of options for live rock management. In June,
1993 the SAFMC held a public scoping meeting in Duck Key, Florida t o solicit input from the
harvesters and the general public on the management of live rock. In addition, the Councils
recommended that a control date be published t o accomplish two things; first, it would put all
active harvesters and people interested in beginning harvest on notice that the Councils are
developing regulations to manage live rock in the EEZ, and secondly, that the Councils would
consider all options from total prohibition to a limited entry system.
Live rock landings and other fishery statistics for states other than Florida are not available;
however, live rock landings are believed to occur in Alabama, and possibly South and North
Carolina. In addition, in SAFMC deliberation on live rock, it was noted that a request had been
made to the Georgia Department of Natural Resources for information on the distribution of live
rock or hard bottom off Georgia with the intent of identifying possible harvest locations. NMFS
recently received a request for licensing information for a new business planning to land live rock in
North Carolina (R.Schmied, pers. comm.). Live rock harvest is currently allowed in the Florida Keys
National Marine Sanctuary, but may be restricted to specific areas by a developing plan.
Subsequently both councils have decided to consider options regarding live rock and to establish a
control date for entry into the fishery.




                    -
                                      ISSUES TO BE CONSIDERED
     HABITAT LOSS What are the direct and indirect effects of live rock harvests on substrate
                                                                                                         I
     availability and reef fish productivity?
I                       -
     AQUARIUM SALES How will restrictions on live rock harvests affect the aquarium trade?
                                                                                                       I1
11   ECOSYSTEM MANAGEMENT        -   How can we ensure the viability of the entire coral reef
1    ecosystem?
                                                                                                         I
                            -
     AESTHETIC VALUES How does the continued collection of live rock affect non-consumptive         :
     usersldivers.                                                                       -      -
                                 -
     CONSISTENT REGULATIONS What is the most consistent management regime for live rock
     harvests in the EEZ, state waters, and the National Marine Sanctuary.


2.0 ALTERNATIVES INCLUDING THE PROPOSED ACTION

A. NO ACTION

Discussion:

Before the mid-1980% marine aquarium hobbyists concentrated on tropical fish rather than
invertebrates. In recent years, however, experienced hobbyists have been able to establish "Living
Reef" aquarium systems using live rock and its associated invertebrates (Feddern, pers. comm. 1.
By the late 1980s, the Florida Marine Patrol estimated that about 3 tons of live rock left Miami
International Airport daily (Wheaton, 1989; FMFC, 19911. In April 1990, Florida began a licensing
and reporting system for live rock landings from the EEZ. In the first year, landings increased 68
percent, but this could have been an artifact of the new reporting system. Between 1991 and
1992, reported landings in Florida increase by one-third (FMRI, 1993). Florida landings of live rock
in 1991 were composed of 41 percent rubble rock, 35 percent algae rock, and 9 percent serpulid
rock with sea mat, false coral, and gorgonian rock comprising the remainder. Live rock is now
being air shipped from Florida throughout the United States and to Canada and England (Feddern.
pers. comm.).

Ecoloaical: Expert testimony to the FMFC (FMFC, 1991, 1992), to the South Atlantic Council ( J u n e
19931 and Wheaton (1989) indicates that live rock harvests represent a consumptive use of an
essentially non-renewable resource. In addition, live rock removals are concentrated in only a few
areas, primarily off South Florida (Figures 2, 3, and 4). About 40 percent of the 1992 landings
were recorded along a 40 mile stretch of reef in the Florida Keys (Tavernier to Duck Key) (FMRI.
        1993) (Figure 4). Thus, adverse impacts can be expected on hard bottom habitat from a
        continuation of live rock harvests at reported levels. The FMFC estimated that the 1991 harvest
        resulted in the loss of at least .39 acre of hard bottom surface (4 inches deep). BY 1992, harvest
        levels had increased from a reported 300 tons to about 400 tons. In the period January through
        July of 1993, with no harvest allowed in March, 250 tons were landed (FMRI, 1993). Monthly
        landings have continually increased in 1993 over 1990 (Figure 6).

        The SAFMC's Habitat and Environmental Protection Advisory Panel developed the following
        position statement: "It is the opinion of the majority of scientists familiar with the ecology of live
        rock habitats that continued harvest of "wild rock" is resulting in a net loss of this important
        resource, ..." In addition, they referred to live rock as "... habitat of at least high value and, to a
        larger extent, critical value for a number of managed species including spiny lobster, reef fishes
        including the snapperlgrouper complex and state managed species such as "tropical species" for
        the aquarium trade."

        Socioeconomi~:Florida estimated that the ex-vessel value of the FY 95 live rock harvest in the EEZ
        off Florida would be about $3.5 million, assuming no state or Federal restrictions and a 30 percent
        annual increase in landings (FMFC, 1992).


        6. DEFINITIONS FOR THE MANAGEMENT UNIT
           The management unit already consists of the coral and coral reefs of the EEZ within the
           jurisdiction of the Councils. The species already included in the management unit area:
                                                                                                         -   -
            a. Corals: the corals of the Class HYDROZOA (stinging and hydrocorals) and the-class
               ANTHOZOA (sea fans, whips, precious corals, sea pens, and stony corals).

            b. Coral Reefs: The hard bottoms, deep-water banks, patch reefs, and outer bank reefs.


        (1 Addition of Live Rock to the Coral FMP's Management Unit
G&SA*

        Additions to the management unit:

            c. Live Rock: Certain living marine organisms or an assemblage thereof attached t o a hard
               substrate (including dead coral or rock). Such Living Marine Organisms associated with
               Hard Bottoms, Banks, Reefs, and Live Rock may include:

                    Sea Anemones (Phylum CNIDARIA: Class ANTHOZOA:
                       Order ACTINARIA)
                    Sponges (Phylum PORIFERA)
                    Tube Worms (Phylum ANNELIDA)
                       Fan worms
                       Feather duster worms
                       Christmas tree worms



        G - lndicates preferred option of the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council
        SA - Indicates preferred option of the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council
                       Crustaceans (Phylum ARTHROPODA: Class CRUSTACEA)
                       Molluscs (Phylum MOLLUSCAI
                          Snails
                          Nudibranchs
                          Bivalves: scallops, oysters, clams, mussels
                          Cleaner shrimp
                          Decorator and hermit crabs
                       Echinoderms (Phylum ECHINODERMATA)
                          Starfish
                          Brittlestars and feather stars
                          Crinoids
                          Sea Urchins
                       Byozoans (Phylum BRYOZOA)
                       Sea Squirts (Phylum CHORDATA)
                       Marine Algae
                          Mermaid's fan and cups (Ydotea spp.)
                          Corraline algae
                          Green feather, green grape algae (Cauler~a SPP.)
                          Watercress (Halimeda spp.)

         Discussion:
                                                                                                             -
         In order to be included in the management unit live rock must be defined. The Councils are , _
         authorized to develop management plans for fisheries (composed of stocks of finfish, mollusks,
         crustaceans, and all other forms of marine animal and plant life other than marine mammals and
         birds). This definition aptly describes the product and conforms to those animals and marine life
         forms subject to management under the Magnuson Act.


         (21    Redefinition of Allowable Octocoralt
G & SA
                "Allowable octocorals" could be redefined as follows:

                Allowable octocorals means erect. non-encrustinn soecies of the subclass Octocorallia,
                gxceot the orohibited sea fans Gomonia flabellum and G. ventalina. includinn onlv the
                substrate covered bv the holdfast.

                Discussion:

                Any restrictions on live rock harvests will affect harvest of octocorals allowed under the
                FMP since most octocorals taken for the marine aquarium trade are removed with attached
                substrate. A redefinition,of "allowable octocorals" would help clarify that only individual
                colonies, and not whole rocks, may be taken under the octocoral quota. Harvest of
                encrusting octocorals he., primarily Briareum and Ewthrooodium spp. or "gorgonian live
                rock") involves removal of the entire substrate.


         C. MANAGE LIVE ROCK HARVESTS

         The impacts of managing live rock harvests will depend upon the specific type of restrictions
         chosen. Restriction alternatives include:
            C. 1. Limit Harvest
                  a. Establish an annual quota for live rock harvest
                  b. Limit access/effort for live rock
            C.2, Prohibit Harvest
                  a. Prohibit harvest of live rock
                  b. Phase out harvest of live rock
                  c. Provide for aquaculture of live rock
            C.3 Provide for different management in the jurisdictional areas of the two councils

Any restrictions on the harvest of live rock will entail consideration of scientific and educational
uses, the addition of live rock to the management unit, a possible re-definition of allowable
octocorals, and the timing of restrictions as a mitigating measure.

C. 1.   Limit Harvest

    C.1 .a. Establish a live rock quota and permit system.

    Section 12.3.1 may be revised to provide an annual quota for live rock. An additional
    management measure may be added to include a permit and reporting system for live rock
    harvest, similar to allowable octocorals. Other than recent production statistics from Florida
    there are few data on which t o base a quota.

    Discussion:                                                                                 -   -

    Ecoloaicd: Florida live rock collectors argue that there is net production of live rock on the
    Florida Reef Tract. In testimony on the State's rulemaking, marine life fishermen noted that
                                                             -
    pieces of coral reefs naturally break off during storms forming the rubble zones or coral rubble
    - and that this live rock was surplus to the needs of the ecosystem and available for harvest.
    They recommended no quotas but wished to limit future entry into the fishery. Trip limits have
    been suggested by some.

    About 85 percent of the 1991 live rock harvest was rubble, algae, or serpulid rock (FDER). It is
    used as a base in saltwater aquariums to improve filtration. The filtration capabilities of coral
    rubble depend on the presence of a complex assemblage of micro-organisms, bacteria, larval
    forms of coral, and other macro-invertebrates. Live rock, however, is probably at least as
    useful in the reef ecosystem as it is in marine aquaria, i.e., as substrate essential for
    colonization of sessile organisms including prohibited coral (FMFC, 19911.

    Some commercial live rock is encrusted with "showyw macro-organisms to form a "mini-reef".
    Based on estimated growth rates for coral reefs, these mini-reefs probably grow extremely
    slowly, if at all (FMFC, 1991; CFMC in draft).

    Socioeconomi~: The wholesale (exvessel) value of live rock varies by location and with
    encrusting organisms. Bare rubble rock may be priced as low as $0.50 per pound while
    "Christmas tree rock' brings 53.00 per pound (R. Londeree, pers. comm.).

    C.1 .b. Limit AccesslEffort in the Live Rock Fishery

    Implement a moratorium on new entrants in the harvest of live rock and limit the harvest to         X
    pounds per daily trip.
        Discussion:

        Ecoloaical: Florida live rock collectors recommended no quotas but wished to limit future entry
        into the fishery (Januzzi. 19911. Trip limits have also been recommended by some fishermen
        during Council discussions.

        Studies have shown that the coral rubble communities are extremely rich in species diversity,
        provide refuge for species that are not found in other habitats, and contribute a substantial
        amount of the total coral reef biomass (Meesters et al. 19911. Only about 30 percent of the
        1991 live rock harvest was so-called "rubble rock" used as a base in saltwater aquariums to
        improve filtration (FMFC, 1992). Based on estimated growth rates for coral reefs (maximum
        sustainable growth of about 10 mmlyr [Buddemeier and Smith, 19881), these "mini-reefs" grow
        extremely slowly. Serpullid rock, composed of calcareous worm tubes, accretes more rapidly.
        It comprised about 33 percent of live rock production on Florida's West Coast in 1991.

        Florida's live rock harvest in 1992 was about 800,000 pounds as compared with 370,000 for
        1 1.5 months of 1991. With increasing sophistication of marine aquarium facilities there is a
        potential for increasing the number of participants in the fishery and harvest of live rock.

        Socioeconomic: Currently about 35 individuals or about 18 percent of those engaged in the
        marine aquarium or "marine life" fishery in Florida are involved at least part-time in the
        collection of live rock. The FMRl reports the exvessel value of the 1992 live rock harvest at -
        about $628,000. Limiting entry and effort rather than prohibitions on harvesting of live roc-k
        could allow this industry to continue at some prescribed level of harvest.

     C.2. Prohibit Harvest


 s
U?        C.2.a. Prohibit Harvest of Live Rock
SA        Amend the FMP to prohibit the take or possession of live rock from the EEZ. This is the
          preferred option of the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council.

          Discussion:

          Ecoloaical: The current Coral FMP prohibits the damaging, harming, killing, or possession of
          prohibited coral or of coral reefs. Thus, the taking of live rock from these sources is currently
          prohibited. The importance of live rock t o the reef ecosystem is threefold. First, the sessile
          invertebrate communities that comprise live rock are a significant food base for fisheries of
          commercial and recreational importance. Second, the physical and topographical complexity
          of the hard substrate and attached living communities provides critical shelter and habitat to a
          wide range of organisms. Limestone ledges and outcroppings and serpulid rocks which occur
          in the eastern Gulf of Mexico also provide habitat for invertebrate reef dwelling organisms as
          well as reef fish assemblages. Indeed, many studies show a positive correlation between
          increased habitat complexity and increased fish abundance and diversity (e.g., Carpenter et
          al., 1981; Roberts and Ormond, 1987; Hixon and Beets, 1993).

          Third, rock and dead coral surfaces are vital substrates for the settlement of larval phases of
          benthic organisms. Suitability of substrate is one of the major factors controlling the
          distribution of many species (Kinzie, 1971; Wheaton, 1989). There is little known of the
          generation rates of live rock complexes. In terms of some hard substrate, replacement is
likely to be in the order of geological time and harvest is expected to result in net loss of this
substrate.

In addition, Amendment 1 to the SnapperIGrouper FMP in the South Atlantic (SAFMC, 1988)
prohibits trawling a live bottom to protect essential fishery habitat from disturbance. The
SAFMC considered disturbance of essential reef fish habitat unacceptable considering the
limited distribution of limestone ledges and outcropping which constitute the majority of hard
bottom in the South Atlantic north of Cape Canaveral, Florida (Figure 5).

Wheaton, in a presentation to the South Atlantic Council's Habitat Committee, stated that
the rubble zone of a reef tract promotes the highest carbonate production from coral and
algae which sustains the living coral reef. she noted that 75 percent of the rubble live rock
has come from Area 748, a 40-mile section of the Florida reef tract (Figures 3 and 4).

Harvest of "wild" live rock could be replaced with live rock from aquaculture in state waters.
Experiments on the cultivation of live rock in Tampa Bay, Florida, indicate that marketable live
rock can be produced within 6 months (Ehringer and Webb, 1992). A more desirable product
would take longer to produce, perhaps a year or longer (Shella Barger, pers. comm.). One 5-
acre lease site has been approved off Tarpon Springs and the Florida Governor and Cabinet is
scheduled to consider a second lease site in September 1993. FDEP plans to survey a third
site in October. The Florida Department of Environmental Protection is developing rulemaking
which provides for a general permit for live rock aquaculture which should be implemented in
July of 1994, prior to the approval and possible effective date of regulations presented in this
amendment (V. Wetherell, pers. comm.). Prohibition of harvest upon implementation of this
amendment would correspond closely with the original phase-out implemented by Florida. In
addition, total landings from the now unregulated fishery will exceed what the total landings
would have been under previous state regulations.

Billy Causey, Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary (Sanctuary) Manager, testified at a
SAFMC Habitat Committee meeting in June, 1993 that the aquaculture of live rock could be
done in the "special use zones" which have been proposed in the Draft Sanctuary Plan.
Special use zones, as described in a Sanctuary draft management alternatives document
(NOAA, 1993) can be used to, "establish areas that confine or restrict high-impact activities
... and to reduce user conflicts." FDEP personnel are meeting with Sanctuary personnel in
October of 1993 to discuss the coordination of aquaculture sitings in the Sanctuary
(Wheaton, pers. comm.).

Socioeconomi~: There will be costs associated with permitting and licensing systems to
establish and monitor open-system aquaculture operations. A continuation of a supply of
aquacultured product, however, could benefit the marine aquarium industry as a whole,
including fish collectors, fish wholesalers and retailers, equipment suppliers, and the live rock
producers. Although most marine aquarium species are taken from the wild, about 90
percent of the freshwater fish available in the ornamental trade are captive-bred (Andrews,
1990). If prohibitions are placed on wild harvests, the marine aquarium industry could
transfer to aquaculture provided the legal means to do so are implemented in state or federal
waters. A further delay of up to one year after placement of the cultch material may be
expected to allow for attachment and growth of marine organisms.

C.2.b. Phase-out Live Rock Harvest

Allow a harvest or decreasing annual quotas of live rock harvest for a prescribed period to
allow eventual replacement from aquaculture.
The Gulf Council proposes as its preferred option to allow three more years of unlimited live
rock harvest after implementation of the amendment. After three years live rock could be
harvested.from or possessed in the EEZ only under permit for aquaculture or scientific
collection.

This alternative would allow time for live rock fishermen to convert to aquaculture. There is
proposed to be such a system in Florida; however, no such operation has been completely
permitted. An applicant may spend a year obtaining a permit once a system is developed and
another year in culturing the introduced cultch (seed rock) material.

There are a number of other phase-out schedules that may be considered, including longer or
shorter time periods and the use of daily vessel limits.

Florida prohibited live rock harvest from state waters in 1989, but decided to allow a gradual
phase-out of landings from the EEZ to minimize economic impacts on fishermen and to allow
the development of live rock aquaculture in state waters (FMFC 1992). Florida's phase-out
schedule: Harvest of live rock in the EEZ is not to exceed 225 tons during the 1993 season,
150 tons during the 1994 season and 75 tons during the 1995 season. Following the close
of the 1995 season, OY for live rock in the EEZ is to be zero (0) except as may be authorized
for scientific and educational purposes or aquaculture permit. This phase-out schedule was -
overturned by a federal court in March 1993, however.
                                                                                          -   -
Discussion:

Ecolo~ical: A phasing out of live rock harvest from the EEZ would allow three more years of
harvest but would eventually eliminate any adverse impact caused by the removal of hard
bottom material.

Socioeconomi~: Presumably, aquaculture operations could eventually replace the harvest of
naturally occurring live rock while contributing to a reef type of habitat. Deposition of
material would be similar to construction of an artificial reef. In addition, stony corals and
other prohibited corals will settle on the aquaculture substrate, and their harvest and sale will
need to be addressed specifically.

No aquaculture venture has yet obtained all necessary permits for operation in Florida or
federal waters; though several collectors are currently attempting t o do so (R. Londeree, pers:
comm.). The Florida Department of Environmental Protection expects to develop a rule-
making for allowing live rock aquaculture in July 1994 (V. Wetherall, per. comm.). The
Minerals Management Service has no history of leasing bottom areas for such purposes in
federal waters; though some arrangement may be possible (C. Oynes, pers. comm.).
Sufficient phase-out time, perhaps several years after permitting procedures are resolved,
would be required to prevent a disruption of the live rock fishery and market.


C.2.c. Provide for Aquaculture of Live Rock in the EEZ

Discussion:

The organisms in the management unit for live rock will readily attach to and grow on
suitable material introduced into the marine environment given the appropriate conditions.
            Shipwrecks, offshore platforms, rock jetties, bottles, and artificial reefs all bear evidence of
            accretion of various organisms. The Coral FMP, for example, specifically exempts the
            "harvest" of coral in the removal of marine equipment such as that used in offshore
            petroleum extraction. The Gulf Council proposes to provide allowance of aquaculture of live
            rock in the EEZ.

            The rate of the encrustation of the material by desirable live rock organisms depends on local
            environment. Some seed rock may be saleable as live rock in as short a period as six months
            while development of more showy pieces may require several years. In order to identify the
            cultured rock it may be necessary to require use of non-indigenous material or some type of
            mark or tag to separate the aquaculture rock from "wild" live rock.

            A number of potential aquaculturalists are interested in Federal lease sites for open-system
            live rock aquaculture. The Mobile District of the Army Corps of Engineers has indicated a
            willingness to authorize placement and removal of cultch material for live rock culture within
            the general permit area for artificial reef construction off Alabama. Authorization would be on
            an individual basis upon application. However, the applicant would not have exclusive
            property rights over the seeded live rock.

            Socioeconomi~: A provision to allow 'production and sale of cultured live rock if the harvest
            of wild live rock is prohibited would at least partially replace the loss to fishermen and others
            in the business. Exvessel sales of rock in 1992 were estimated t o be $628,000 in Florida. If
            maintenance of marine aquaria are dependent on such materials, then its production would .
            affect the entire industry.                                                              -  -


     C.3.    Provide for Different Management in the Jurisdictional Areas of the Two Councils

     Discussion:

     The two Councils have selected different preferred options for discussion at public review. The
     issues may be very different in the two areas. Most of the Florida reef tract where much live rock
     is produced lies within the jurisdiction of the South Atlantic Council. Most live rock in the Gulf
     comes from live bottom areas on the Florida shelf where there are fewer live coral reefs. The
     Councils could opt for different approaches to management because of the difference in bottom
     types and their need for protection.

     C.4.    Permits for Live Rock Harvest

m?           C.4.a.         Require a federal permit in the absence of a state permit for harvest and
G                           possession of "wild" live rock from the EEZ during the phase-out period.

             Discussion:

             The use of a permit would identify participants if effort limitation or a moratorium is selected
             as the preferred option.

             The use of a permit could also facilitate statistical reporting. Florida already requires a
             marine life permit for landing live rock from the EEZ, therefore only persons landing live rock
             in other states would be affected.
 s
u?     C.4.b Require a permit for the possession or harvest of live rock from aquaculture
G               operations.

       Live rock from a federally-authorized aquaculture operation may be possessed aboard a
       vessel in the EEZ or landed from the EEZ under a harvest permit issued by a federal entity.
       The presence of prohibited coral on the live rock is authorized under the permit.

       While the Councils and NMFS do not have the authority to lease federal water bottoms for
       aquaculture, other federal agencies (Corps of Engineers, Minerals Management Service, and
       Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary) may have some regulatory responsibility in that
       respect. A permit would allow harvest and possession of otherwise prohibited material.

       Discussion:

       Ecoloaical: The transfer of live rock harvest from naturally occurring rock to aquaculture
       operations would preserve and enhance hard bottom habitat. A permit requirement would
       limit harvest to persons with authorized aquaculture operations. Although there is currently
       no known provision for leasing federal water bottom for aquaculture, some mechanism may
       be used through a Corps of Engineers' permit to place and remove cultch material.
       Individuals could obtain authorization to deposit the cultch material (seed rock) without
       exclusive harvest rights afforded by a lease. In such cases the existence of an aquaculture:
       permit for live rock harvest would be useful in separating aquaculturalists from illegal - -
       harvesters.

       The exemption for possession of prohibited corals on cultured live rock becomes appropriate
       due to the probability that corals will settle and grow on the cultch material.

       The introduction of rock or other cultch material in aquaculture operations would serve to
       expand hard bottom areas similar to the construction of artificial reefs on otherwise barren
       bottoms.

       Socioeconomi~: If the marine aquarium industry is dependent on a source of live rock to
       stabilize water chemistry in aquaria, the livelihood of a number of people in associated sales
       and services would be adversely affected by a termination of supply. Included would be fish
       collectors, fish wholesalers and retailers, equipment suppliers, as well as the live rock
       producers.


s
I      C.4.c.          Require a federal permit for harvest of prohibited corals and prohibited live
G&SA                   rock from the EEZ for scientific, aducational, and restoration purposes.

       Discussion:

       The Coral FMP currently provides for issuance of a federal permit t o take prohibited corals
       for scientific and educational purposes. If live rock is added to the management unit and its
       harvest is restricted or prohibited, allowance should be made to add it to the scientific
       collecting permit.
     D.     OPTIMUM YIELD (OY) FOR LIVE ROCK


     D l    OY for live rock is to be zero except for that which may be allowed by permit.
SA
     There is to be no allowable harvest under this OY except that which is provided under scientific,
     educational, or restoration collecting permit or aquaculture permit. The amended FMP currently
     defines overfishing as an annual level of harvest that exceeds OY.

     Discussion:

     Ecolooical: This alternative would provide the maximum protection to the hard bottom habitat. I t
     is compatible with Alternative C.2,prohibition of harvest.

     Socioeconomi~: There would be no further loss to fisheries from habitat removal due to harvest of
     live rock. Harvestors and dealers of live rock and those in the aquarium trade would lose access t o
     the natural resource unless and until an alternative source is provided through aquaculture or from
     imported material.

     0.2.       OY for live rock to be unlimited for three years after which it is to be zero except for that
                which may be allowed by permit.

     This alternative is compatible with Alternative C.2.b, which would provide for a three-year ~hase-
     out period. After that, harvest would be allowed only under permit for scientific collection or
     aquaculture.

     Discussion:

     Ecoloaical: Live rock harvest would continue, probably at or near current level. The material would
     be removed from rubble areas and hard bottom areas, and to that extent would degrade the hard
     bottom habitat.

     Socioeconomi~: This option would provide a three-year grace period to allow harvestors, dealers,
     and users to develop an alternative source of supply.


     3.0 AFFECTED ENVIRONMENT
     ..
     _-
     Florida's "marine life' or aquarium fishery involves at least 300 species of tropical ornamental fish
     and invertebrates. In recent years, declining catch-per-unit-effort has led t o industry sponsored
     proposals for limited entry. Florida's Department of Environmental Protection IFDEP) has issued
     marine life endorsements on 198 saltwater product licenses (SPLs); about 60 percent are full-time
     fishermen. About two-thirds reside in Monroe County and almost 90 percent are from South
     Florida [Januzzi, 1991; Florida Marine Fisheries Commission (FMFC), 19921.

     Wheaton (1989) defined "live rock" as a broad term used by the marine life collection industry to
     describe several types of substrate colonized by marine organisms and described four main types
     collected in somewhat specific habitats:
     1. Rubble Rock - Also called base rock, "possesses very little life" but is desirable for the
        "borers" living'in the rock and as a substrate "base" in aquaria. Rubble rock is collected
        from mounds in shallow water in back-reef locations.

                    -
     2. Algae Rock Also called plant rock, is colonized chiefly by algae, secondarily by feather
        duster worms and other invertebrates. Algae rock is collected from rubble areas in the back
        reef and from inshore areas on both the Atlantic and Gulf sides of the Keys.

     3. False Coral - Also called anemone rock, is covered with anemones in the genera Ricordea
        and Rhodactis, which are accompanied by encrusting gorgonians, chicken liver sponges,
        other invertebrates, and algae. Although collected mostly from patch reef areas, false coral
        occurs in other reef habitats.

     4. Sea Mat - Also called gravel rock, is colonized almost exclusively by anemone-like
        organisms, usually of the genus Zoanthus, and is principally collected from dredged rock
        jetties.

Wheaton continues that her sources (dealers and collectors) maintain that the majority of the rock
itself is dead coral, and its collection is primarily to obtain the associated organisms. Similar types
of live rocks are also harvested from Gulf waters (personal observation1 communication). However,
the underlying substrate in the Gulf is chiefly limestone outcropping with carbonate sediments
rather than dead coral. Live rock can therefore be defined as a substrate with a composition that -
varies from deadleroded coral, to a conglomerate of cemented calcium carbonate sediments, to
                                                                                                       -
non-organic rock of various shapes and dimensions with attached andlor associated biota, f&ming
micro-communities. The substrate may exist as reef framework, outcroppings of hard bottom, or
unconsolidated rubble.

In 1989, FDEP determined that live rock harvests constituted prohibited mining of state submerged
lands, and landings from state waters were prohibited, but fishing operations shifted t o the EEZ and
intensified due to increasing demand (FMFC, 19911. By the late 1980s, the Florida Marine Patrol
estimated that about 3 tons of live rock left Miami International Airport daily (FMFC, 1991 ;
Wheaton, 1989). About 31 percent (61 of Florida's SPLs with a marine life endorsement (198)
report live rock landings from the EEZ off Florida (FMFC, 1992). According to Norris and Wheaton
(1991 ), during the last 9 months in 1990 (the first required reporting period), a total of 133 tons of
live rock were reported landed in Florida. During the same 9 month period in 1991, over 226 tons
were reported (a 68 percent increase). Total reported landings in Florida were about 300 tons in
1991 (FMFC, 1992). Landings and other fishery statistics for other states are not available;
although live rock landings are believed to occur in Texas and Alabama. NMFS recently received a
request for licensing information for a new business planning to land live rock in North Carolina (R.
Schmied, pers. comm.).

          of
Descri~tion the Resource

A.      Invertebrates Associated with Reefs and Live Rock:

The assemblage that makes up live rock comprises a community of organisms that have recruited
at different times, grown at different rates and pursued different life history strategies (Wheaton
1989), supported by a hard substrate, often composed of dead coral. In general, little is known of
the biology of the individual organisms and even less of the communities they form. Some are
sessile (do not move) for all of their adult life, some are sedentary and move slowly or rarely, and
others range extensively over the live rock and reef habitats. These organisms are members of a
variety of species of the Phyla Porifera (sponges), Cnideria (anemones and gorgonians), Annelida
(polychaete worms), Mollusca (bivalves, snails and octopus), Arthropoda (shrimp, lobsters, and
crabs), Bryozoa, Echinodermata (starfish, brittlestars, urchins), and Chordata (tunicates or sea
squirts).

Following is a brief summary of the general characteristics of each of these groups.

   1. Porifera - Sponges (Phylum PORIFERA) are typically attached to hard substrate. They are all
sessile and exhibit little detectable movement. They display great variability in size and shape.
Growth rates and body shape are highly dependent on space availability, the inclination of the
substrate, and current velocity. They are taken commercially for curios, as bath sponges, and for
use in marine aquaria. Certain species are thought to provide critical habitat for juvenile spiny
lobster (Butler et al. 1992).

              -
    2. Cnideria Corals and sea anemones (Phylum CNIDERIA) include stony corals, octocorals,
gorgonians, and anemones. Coral biology and life history is discussed in the FMP and Amendment
 1. Anemones include a wide variety of organisms that may be solitary or colonial. The polyps vary
greatly in morphology and colonial structure. Species are often brightly colored and are usually
 attached to rocks. Solitary anenomes are considered sessile but can change location by slow
gliding. Colonies of anemones are comprised of numerous polyps, each 1-2 cm in diameter and
interconnected as a.mat, which may form large encrusting masses on rocks. The Caribbean or
pink-tipped anemone, which spawns off Key West in late spring, provides shelter for a variety of
juvenile and adult fish and crustaceans (Jennison 19811. No information is available on its age and
growth characteristics.                                                                      . -

               -
   3. Annelida Segmented tube worms (Phylum ANNELIDA: Polychaeta) including fan worms,
feather duster worms and Chistmas tree worms, live in tubes of varying degrees of complexity
attached to hard substrate and filter-feed with their "fans." Because they firmly adhere to the
substrate, in many cases it is necessary to remove the underlying rock t o collect segmented
worms.

               -
   4. Mollusca The molluscs (Phylum MOLLUSCA: Gastropoda; Bivalvia; Cephalopoda) are a very
diverse group including snails, nudibranchs, clams, oysters, and octopus. The gastropods (snails
and nudibranchs, or sea slugs) are the largest class of molluscs and have adapted t o a wide range
of habitats including live rock. Snails usually have a spiral shell and an operculum (shell cover),
while the shell is reduced in nudibranchs which have no operculum. Molluscs can be herbivorous,
scrapping algae from rocks, or predaceous, like the horse conch.

Nudibranchs are often highly colored and may occur on the surface of living or dead coral. Many
gastropods reach adult size and maturity in 6 months to 2 years, but slow growth continues and
many species do not reach maximum size for many years. Bivalve molluscs (clams and oysters) are
laterally compressed and possess a shell with two valves, hinged dorsally, that completely enclose
the body. In general, bivalves grow most rapidly during their early years. Ages of 20 t o 30 years
are now known to be common in some bivalves. Flame scallops are commonly collected for marine
aquariums. The flame scallop measures up to 8 cm and occurs in narrow rock crevices,
occasionally in groups. Octopus also occur on coral reefs and live rock and feed at night on other
invertebrates.

                   -
   5. Arthro~oda The shrimp, crab, and lobster (Phylum ARTHR0PODA:Crustacea decopoda)
species are some of the most important reef-associated invertebrates. They are characterized by
their segmented bodies, chitinous exoskeleton, and compound eyes. The shrimp species harvested
for aquariums are characteristically highly colored and are often associated with anemone species,
from which they may derive protection from predators. Some species help clean fish and may play
an important role in reef fish health. Some crab species occur on coral branches and feed on
polyps by night. Decorator crabs attach bits of sponges and algae to their bodies, presumably for
camouflage, The arrow crab most commonly occurs on sponges and near sea anemones. Little is
known of the natural abundance, growth, longevity, or replacement rates of the decapod crustacea
found on live rock and reefs.

   6. Echinodermata - The starfish, brittlestars, feather stars and sea urchins are all members of
the phylum ECHINODERMATA. They possess an internal skeleton of calcareous plates and, despite
an underlying bilateral symmetry, often appear circular or exhibit 5-rayed symmetry. Brittlestars
have long arms and can move actively over the reef, while the basket star, attached to gorgonian
or tall coral heads, is relatively sessile. Some sea urchins are valuable research organisms, occur in
rocky habitats, and are probably slow-growing.

                               -
     7. Brvozoa and Chordata Other Phyla, principally the BRYOZOA (ectoprocts or 'moss' animals)
and CHORDATA (ascidians or sea squirts) may be the animals primarily responsible for the water-
filtering characteristics of live rock. Bryozoans colonies can form a thin encrusting layer over rock
or they may be erect and branching. As adults, sea squirts usually live attached, singly or in
colonies, to hard substrate or to the bases such as gorgonian stalks, and vary greatly in size and
coloration.

0 . Ecological Relationships
                                                                                                    -
                                                                                                    -
The frequency of commensalism (relationship between two organisms in which one species -
benefits and the other species, the host, is neither benefited nor harmed) in the coral reef
                                                                                               -
environment is one of the most important contributing factors to high species diversity (Bruce
1974). Hanlon and Hixon (1986) recorded over 30 small West Indian reef fish within the tentacles
of a single anemone. Several reef and shrimp species, living in close association with anemones,
are believed to play an important role in reef health by their "cleaning" activities. Limbaugh (1961
recorded one cleaning station that was visited by 300 fish over a 6 hour period. Following removal
of cleaner species from 2 reefs, he noted a marked decline in fish in the area over the following
few weeks and, among those remaining, an increase in infections and parasites.

Other interspecific associations have been documented for other fish, cnidarians, molluscs,
crustaceans, echinoderms and brvozoans (Wheaton 1989). For example, sponges are inhabited b y
a wide variety of animals, including crustaceans,'polychaetes, and fish. Several reef fish feed on
sponges as does the endangered hawksbill sea turtle, Eretmochelys imbricata. Zoanthus, a colonial
anemone, is a food source of major importance for at least 1 6 species of fish in 7 families (Randall
1967). In Randall's study, polychaetes were among the most important food items of 62 West
Indian reef fish species in 24 families, and were surpassed as preferred foods only b y crustaceans.
Ophiuroids (brittlestars) were food for 33 fish species and 1 6 species fed on benthic tunicates.
Octocorals have been noted to provide important habitat for fish and invertebrates and may be
especially critical for lobster in the 20-40 mm size range (Wheaton pers. obs.1.


4.0   REGULATORY IMPACT REVIEW AND INITIAL REGULATORY FLEXIBILITY ANALYSIS

                                             Introduction

The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) requires a Regulatory Impact Review (RIR) for all
regulatory actions that are of public interest. The RIR does three things: 1) it provides a
comprehensive review of the level and incidence of impacts associated with a proposed or final
regulatory action, 2) it provides a review of the problems and policy objectives prompting the
regulatory proposals and an evaluation of the major alternatives that could be used to solve the
problem, and 31 it ensures that the regulatory agency systematically and comprehensively considers
all available alternatives so that the public welfare can be enhanced in the most efficient and cost
effective way. .

The RIR also serves as the basis for determining whether any proposed regulations are a
"significant regulatory action" under certain criteria provided in Executive Order 12866 and
whether the proposed regulations will have a significant economic impact on a substantial number
of small entities in compliance with the Regulatory Flexibility Act of 1980 (RFA).

This RIR analyzes the probable impacts on fishery participants of the proposed plan amendment t o
the Fishery Management Plan for Coral and Coral Reefs of the Gulf of Mexico and South Atlantic
(FMP).

                                       Problems and Objectives

The general problems and objectives are found in the FMP, as amended. The purpose and need for
the present plan amendment are found in Section 1.0 of the amendment document. Essentially the
current plan amendment addresses the issue of including "live rock" in the management unit,
regulating their harvest in the EEZ, and requiring permits for their harvest and possession.


                              Methodology and Framework for Analysis
                                                                                                --
The fundamental issue in this plan amendment is the management of "live rock" as part of the
FMP. The basic approach adopted in this RIR is an assessment of management measures from the
standpoint of determining the resulting changes in costs and benefits to society. The net effects
are stated in terms of producer surplus to the harvest sector, net profits t o the intermediate sector,
and consumer surplus t o the final users of the resource.

The harvest sector refers to the commercial harvesters of live rock and the intermediate sector, t o
dealers of live rock. Final users of the resource are taken t o refer to the individuals that derive
benefits from the resource in either consumptive or non-consumptive manner. This last group
consists of individual buyers of live rock from commercial dealers or harvesters, harvesters of live
rock for use in personal aquaria, extractors of live rock for research purposes, and non-extracting
users of live rock such as divers.

In addition to changes in the surpluses mentioned above from managing live rock, there are also
changes in producer and consumer surpluses of indirect users of the resource, such as those
involved in other fisheries and tourist activities, that will be effected through a change in the
management of live rock. Moreover, other so-called non-use values, such as existence value,
bequest value and option value, will be affected by a change in the management of live rock. .
Finally, there are public and private costs associated with the process of changing and enforcing
regulations on live rock.

Ideally, all these changes in costs and benefits need to be accounted for in assessing the net
economic benefit from management of live rock. The RIR attempts to determine these changes t o
the extent possible, albeit in a very qualitative manner.

In addition to discussions on net economic benefits, some consideration is given on such other
issues as community employment and income opportunity, acceptability of the regulatory
measures, and present and historical panicipation in the fishery.
                           Impacts of Proposed Actions and Alternatives

A. NO ACTION

Global retail sales of in the ornamental fish hobby has been estimated at about $4 billion, and about
$1.6 billion of that amount are spent in the U.S. (Derr, 1992; Andrews, 1990). Reportedly, the
fastest growing component of the marine life or aquarium trade is minireefs or live reef aquarium
systems, the cost of which could range from a thousand to several tens of thousands of dollars
(Derr, 1992). The backbone for this type of aquarium is live rock and its associated invertebrates.
Consumer demand then for such type of aquariums underlie the derived demand for live rock.
Empirical estimates of such demand are not currently available, and in fact there is little known
about the demand for live rock. It can be said, however, that as long as such consumer demand
for minireefs continues to grow over time, derived demand for live rock or its substitutes will
correspondingly grow. The likelihood of such growth in demand depends partly on whether
minireefs are a mere fad or a structural shift in demand for aquariums. While as a fad minireef
demand would decline in the near future, as a structural shift such demand would be sustained
over time. In the latter case, income and population growth would become significant factors.
Looking only at the income factor, one can possibly argue that if a growing demand for minireefs is
observable at current times when the economy is at its ebb, a stronger demand can be expected
when the economy starts to recover. Given such prospects for demand, the derived demand for
live rock and its substitutes may be expected t o keep apace.
                                                                                                      -
Supply of accessories for aquarium trade come from many countries, including the U.S. While   -
domestic production of ornamental fish comprises only a small percentage of the entire U.S.
                                                                                            --
supply, it does reportedly account for a good percentage of live rock supply in the U.S. As
mentioned elsewhere in the amendment document, a portion of domestic production is also shipped
to Canada and England.

While live rock landings are reported to have occurred in Alabama and possibly in the Carolinas,
only records of landings in Florida are available. The live rock industry in Florida is one major
source of live rock supply in the aquarium trade. Since Florida included in trip ticket reporting the
harvest of live rock harvest around March 1990, reported landings over the period 1990-1993 have
shown a steady increase. This is highly reflective of supply of live rock matching the demand for
the product.

Among the states in the jurisdiction of the SAFMC and GMFMC, only Florida has explicit
regulations on the harvest of live rock. Although there are several species comprising live rock,
Florida instituted a management plan for live rock as one unit. This management mainly consists of
a regulation that would phase out the harvest of live rock over a three-year period ending June 30,
1995 by providing gradually reduced harvest quota with trip limits. As mentioned in several
instances in the amendment document, such rules could not be enforced on live rock harvested in
the EEZ.

Based on the foregoing discussions, a no action alternative would practically mean a continuation
of a matching of live rock harvest with an increasing demand. The presence of the mentioned
Florida rules means that, in principle, fishermen would likely fish in state waters during the open
season and in the EEZ during the season when state fishery is closed. This condition would
undoubtedly increase harvest cost, but the reopening of the season (at least in the EEZ) after
March 31, 1993 has revealed that increases in harvest costs are far outweighed by revenue gains
from the sale of live rock. Of course, fishermen would have the option of fishing in state waters
during closed season but they have to match revenues with the probability of a higher cost in the
event they are caught violating state rules, although there is some reason to believe such
probability to be relatively low.

A no action alternative essentially means that the producer surplus to the harvest sector, net
profits to the dealers, and consumer surplus would be maintained at a level that matches any
growth in demand. The level of these benefits cannot be estimated due to lack of information. It
mav only be stated that about 35 individuals or about 18 percent of those engaged in marine
aquarium are involved at least part-time in the collection of live,rock. Various types of live rock
command different exvessel prices, for example, bare rubble rock could be sold at $0.50 per pound
while "Christmas tree rock" could get as much as $3.00 per pound. FMRl repons the exvessel
value of the 1992 live rock harvest at about $628,000. However, if demand continues to improve,
more individuals in Florida and other states would be involved in the fishery, likely resulting in
increased harvest and larger revenues. Noting the relatively lower cost of harvesting live rock,
producer surplus may be expected to increase as well.

While benefits of the no action alternative accrue to the live rock industry and its associated
industries, certain potential costs would be borne by other sectors and by society as a whole.
These cost items are associated with forfeiting benefits from non-harvest of live rock. These
benefits are in turn associated with the value of live rock either by itself or as contributing factor
to the survival of other marine organisms that may have commercial, recreational or other uses.

Like any natural resource, live rock commands what has been termed non-use values, specifically .
existence value, bequest value, and option value. Existence value refers to the satisfaction
individuals derive from knowledge that a natural resource exists and will continue t o exist in the
future even though they may never use or see the resource. Bequest value is the benefit
associated with endowing a natural resource t o future generations. Option value refers to the
benefit individuals obtain from retaining the option to use the resource in the future by conserving
it now. These values are undoubtedly difficult to measure, but measurement has been done in few
instances. For example, Pearce (1990) estimated the existence value for the Amazonia rainforest
to be at least USS3.2 billion and Hundloe (1987) estimated the existence and option values of the
Australian Great Barrier Reef of about AUSS45 million per year. It only needs mentioning here that
certain degree of the mentioned three values would be forfeited by the harvest of live rock.

Elsewhere in the amendment document are outlined some of the important contributions of live
rock of various kinds t o the survival and growth of some marine species that have commercial or
recreational value and in the particular case of rubble rocks t o the promotion of high carbonate
production from coral and algae which sustains the living coral reef. The economic issue related t o
the effects of live rock on other marine species is one of productivity. This issue involves the
valuation of the change in the productive capacity of an area relative to the affected marine species
where live rock is harvested. The actual estimation of such value requires an enormous amount of
data especially that some of the organisms sustained by the food and protection afforded by live
rock would command larger than minimal commercial or recreational value only when they reach
certain size. The 'other uses" referred above relate to the scientific, educational, and
pharmaceutical values of those species, including organisms attached to the hard substrate, whose
survival partly depend on the presence of live rock.

In the case of live rock's contributions to the living reef, the economic issue involves valuation of
such contribution to the overall non-extractive value of reefs such as those derived from tourism
and non-extractive research and education activities. While some methodologies exist to estimate
such values, data are simply non-existent to undertake the exercise. There are, nonetheless,
existing estimates on the value of reefs some of which were conducted in assessing the value of
damage to reefs. In connection with the damage assessment of the Mavro ship grounding, the
value of bottom habitat was estimated at about $11 per square foot (FMFC, 1991; GMFMC,
1992). This valuation was based on the dockside value of rubble rock with encrusting organisms.
In another instance using tourism expenditures, Mattson and DeFoor (1985) estimated the value of
coral reefs in seven sites located in the John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park and Key Largo
National Marine Sanctuary to be $15.75 per square meter annually based on direct revenues and
$85 per square meter annually based on gross revenues (i.e., inclusive of indirect expenditures).
They also estimated the lifetime value of coral reefs in these seven areas to be at least $1 - 6 billion.
Using a different technique, Finch, Julius, and Lopez (1992) estimated at $1.5 million the value of
1,610 square meters of coral reefs in the Florida Keys damaged due to vessel grounding.

While the above estimates for coral reefs are not directly applicable to the issue of valuing live rock
as an integral pan of coral reef, they do point to the possibility of estimating such values. In the
present case, it has been reported that 75 percent of rubble live rock comes from a known area of
the Florida reef tract, the so-called Area 748 which is a 40-mile section of the Florida reef tract.
Thus, if valuation of live rock and its contribution to the living reef were attempted, this area would
be the prime candidate for study. Spurgeon (19921 spelled out the various components of valuing
coral reefs in terms of financial and social benefits associated with reefs. These benefits can be
assigned monetary values or a range of monetary values where estimation proves difficult. The
two major estimating techniques are travel cost method (TCM) and contingent valuation method
(CVM). Valuation under TCM utilizes such information as the number of people visiting a reef site
and their corresponding travel costs. One major assumption of this method is that the number of
people visiting a site is inversely related to the distance travelled. Under CVM, valuation is        -
undertaken generally by asking people how much they would be willing t o pay for certain reef         -
products assuming they could not be obtained elsewhere. The basic idea in CVM estimation is to
construct a hypothetical market for reef products and to elicit information from people on the
amount they are willing to pay, or be compensated, for any increase or decrease in such products.
Both techniques have been employed in the Gulf but only with regard to determining the
recreational value of fishing for certain marine species (Green, 1989; Leeworthy, 1990; Milon,
1988, 1993; Milon et al., 1993). Currently, a study is under way to estimate the economic value
of reefs in Florida (Adams, per. comm., 1993).

In sum, the no action alternative may be expected to sustain the benefits derivable from the
harvest of live rock, but the attendant costs of an increasing harvest of live rock, although not
quantifiable at the present time, appear to be less than negligible.


B. DEFINITION FOR THE MANAGEMENT UNIT

B.1. Inclusion of live rock in the management unit and provision of explicit definition thereof.

8.2. Redefinition of 'allowable octocorals

Both the Gulf and South Atlantic Councils prefer B.l while only the Gulf Cduncil expresses
preference on 8.2. While 8.1 provides for an explicit definition of live rock and associated
organisms, 8.2 redefines octocorals that are allowed to be harvested as one excluding the hard
substrate on which certain octocorals grow. Thus even if octocorals may be harvested, they have
to be separated from the any hard substrate on which they may be found.

The inclusion of live rock in the management unit means that explicit management regulations may
be enacted affecting live rock taken in the EEZ. In part, the need to explicitly manage the harvest
of live rock in the EEZ is prompted by the existence of state regulations on the fishery. More
importantly, however, earlier discussions on the potential effects of a no action alternative points
to the need of managing the live rock fishery for purposes of recognizing and estimating the costs
and benefits associated with the harvest of live rock. While the no action alternative may seem t o
afford the live rock industry a more competitive environment, the harvest of live rock results in
positive or negative economic externalities that justify government intervention. These externali~ies
have been discussed earlier in terms of costs to society from forfeiting benefits from consumptive
and non-consumptive use of live rock and other affected marine species.


C. MANAGEMENT OF LIVE ROCK HARVESTS

C. 1.   Limit harvest

        a. Establish an annual quota for live rock
        b. Limit accessleffort for live rock



C.2.    Prohibit Harvest

        a. Prohibit harvest of live rock
        b. Phase out harvest of live rock
        c. Provide for aquaculture of live rock

C.3.    Provide for different management in the jurisdictional areas of the two Councils-     --
The basic difference between C. 1 and C.2 is that the former allows an almost sustained harvest of
live rock while the latter closes the fishery either immediately or over a period of time with an
option for aquaculture harvest of live rock. The current preference of the Councils is C.2 over C. 1,
although the two Councils differ in selecting a preferred option under C.2. The Gulf Council prefers
the phasing out of live rock harvest to be supplanted later with aquaculture production while the
South Atlantic Council prefers to immediately ban the harvest of live rock in the EEZ. If the
Councils cannot reach a consensus, C.3 presents a possibility of adopting differing regulations
affecting the harvest of live rock in the Councils' respective iurisdictional waters. Further
discussion of this last option is not pursued here.

The economic issue in the choice between a limit on harvest and a prohibition on harvest of live
rock is one of trade-off between net benefits derived from consumptive use and net benefits
derived from non-consumptive use of live rock. Net benefits from consumptive use are broadly
taken to be the resulting change in producer surplus from the harvest of live rock while net benefits
from non-consumptive use refer t o the increase in values derived from non-harvest of live rock.
This latter set of values refers to those values mentioned earlier in the discussion of the no action
alternative. .Incidentally, the no action alternative is another option appropriately involved in the-
trade-off of net benefits between consumptive and non-consumptive use. The no action alternative
would give the largest allocation of live rock for consumptive use while the harvest prohibition
would give the least of such allocation for consumptive use. The option t o limit harvest would
stand in between the two extreme options. The main indicator involved in assessing the resulting
effects of such trade-off is the resulting overall net benefits t o society.

The mentioned trade-off in net benefits may be appropriately approached within the context of
allocating the live rock resource among competing uses, i.e., consumptive and non-consumptive In
the present case. For an optimal allocation, the necessary condition stipulates that marginal net
benefits are equalized among the various resource uses. Information is obviously too scarce to
determine what level of allocation of live rock between consumptive and non-consumptive uses
satisfies this condition. This lack of information is compounded by the problem of estimating non-
consumptive values for live rock. Under this situation, the ensuing discussion merely points out the
likely changes in overall net benefits to society from a given allocation.

As alluded to earlier, the no action alternative presents a good opportunity for the generation of
relatively high producer surplus in consumptive use but at the same time the same alternative
provides the highest likelihood of a relatively low benefit from non-consumptive use. The economic
disexternalities on users of other marine species and reefs enhanced by the presence of live rock
may not be quantifiable but could be deemed to increase as harvest of live rock increases over
time. The prohibition on harvest of live rock would also present a situation where net loss is
suffered by consumptive users (harvesters) of live rock and a high likelihood for a relatively high net
benefit from non-consumptive use. While the net loss to harvesters may be estimated, the
resulting net benefit for non-consumptive use may not be known, so that the resulting overall net
benefit cannot be determined. In the case of limiting harvest, both consumptive and non-
consumptive net benefits would be realized. In many economic decisions involving purely market
values, most oftentimes the allocation that results in highest net benefits is one that allows many
competing users to remain in business. The difficulty of directly applying this on live rock is that
for a large portion of the benefits derivable from live rock there is no market mechanism that can
be tapped to quantify especially the non-consumptive benefits. As mentioned earlier, however,
there are modeling techiniques that can be employed to estimate those benefits, but one has yet t o
be applied to live rocks in the Gulf and South Atlantic EEZ. The likely possibility that live rock is a-
non-renewable resource only intensifies the problem of quantifying such benefits. A t any rate,_ -
there is probably a relatively higher benefit to society afforded by an allocation that does not
eliminate any of the competing users of the resource. However, such allocation may be achieved
either by simply limiting harvest of wild live rock or by banning such harvest but providing for
aquaculture production. A comparison of the effects of these two alternatives is presented below.

Under C.1, the two options are not mutually exclusive. In fact, a limited access system that is
structured so that fishermen are allocated fixed harvests, an overall quota may be necessary
although such quota may be variable between fishing seasons or within a particular fishing season.
An overall quota presupposes to some extent the provision of an allowable catch. Where an
allowable catch can be provided like in some usual commercial fisheries, provision of an overall
quota without corresponding restriction on effort would ultimately render the fishery inefficient
with resulting reduction in producer surplus. Under this scenario, the adoption of a limited access
management may correct the situation of declining producer surplus.

Under C.2, options (a) and (bl would have similar long-term impact which is a reduction in producer
surplus to the consumptive users, but their short-term effects differ. The phase-out approach
presents a gradual reduction and less overall reduction in short-term producer surplus than the
immediate ban. In addition, the phase-out approach offers a transition phase from harvest of wild
rocks to aquaculture.

As mentioned earlier, an allocation that allows both consumptive and non-consumptive users to
remain in the fishery may be deemed to generate a relatively higher net benefit than an allocation
that excludes one group of users or the other. Here the issue shifts to the effects of forcing the
consumptive users t o switch from harvest of wild live rock t o aquaculture. Assume for discussion
purposes that there are no costly legal obstacles to pursuing aquaculture production. The current
absence of aquaculture production may be taken to imply that this type of production is more
costly than harvest of wild live rock or that demand is still not large enough to render aquaculture
production profitable. In either case, the switch from wild harvest to aquaculture would entail a
reduction in producer surplus or a forgoing of larger profits especially in the face of an increasing
demand. However, such reduction in producer surplus or forgoing of larger profits have to be
modified by the presumed absence of negative externalities on other fisheries or in non-
consumptive use of the live rock resource. In this situation, the switch t o aquaculture may not
result in significant reduction in overall producer surplus, but it will most likely result in the
distribution of producer surplus from those currently in the fishery who may not be able to afford
the investment required for aquaculture to those who can afford and do invest in aquaculture
production.


C.4. Permits for Live Rock Harvest

   C.4.a.   Require a federal permit in the absence of a state permit for harvest and possession of
            "wild" live rock from the EEZ during the phase-out period.

   C.4.b.   Require a federal permit for the possession or harvest of live rock from aquaculture
            operations.

  C.4.c.    Require a federal permit for harvest of prohibited corals and prohibited live rock from
            the EEZ for scientific. educational, and restoration purposes.

Depending on which type of harvest restriction is adopted, any of the three options may be
appropriate. The basic advantage of requiring permit is the identification of fishery participants and
the subsequent effective monitoring and enforcement of rules governing live rock. The
corresponding cost may be deemed minimal considering that the direct cost outlay for-securiirg-
permits may not exceed the administrative cost of issuing permits. There is, of course, the
possibility of some transaction costs that may be incurred in case some form of access limitation is
adopted for the fishery. But such costs would be appropriately considered attendant to that other
regulation that may be adopted and not necessarily from any of the permitting options considered
here.


D. OPTIMUM YIELD (OY) FOR LIVE ROCK

   D.1.     OY for live rock is to be zero except for that which may be allowed by permit.

   D.2.     OY for live rock is to be unlimited for three years after which it is to be zero except for
            that which may be allowed by permit.

The inclusion of live rock in the management unit generally requires the provision for definition of
overfishing. The current FMP, as amended, already contains a definition of overfishing which is
tied to the definition of OY. Specifically, the FMP, as amended, stipulates that overfishing is an
annual harvest that exceeds OY. Either definition of OY may be appropriate depending on the type
of restriction adopted for harvest of live rock.
                                   Government Costs of Regulation

Federal government costs of this action were associated with meetings, travel, calculation of
ABCs, preparation of various documents and reviewing all documents. Other sources of additional
costs include extraordinary research specifically done for the purpose of this particular action,
additional statistics costs, costs associated with the issuance of permits and additional
enforcement costs resulting from the action.

   Prepare and implement action
   Research
   Statistics
   Public cost associated with permits
   NMFS cost associated with permits
   Enforcement

The cost items above have been identified as the likely cost to be incurred in preparing and
implementing this plan amendment. No cost figures are yet available since this amendment is still
under consideration by both Councils.


                       Summary and Expected Net Impact of Proposed Action
                                                                                                       -
The proposed regulatory action constitutes changes in management for of live rock harvests in t h e
EEZ under the jurisdiction on both the Gulf Council and South Atlantic Council. The emphasis of the
summary is on the expected economic impact of the various options.

The no action alternative could result in a sustained profitability of the live rock harvest sector, but
there are attendant costs that could increase along with any increases in the harvest of live rock.
Such cost increases may be prevented by the various options to include live rock under the FMP
and to provide certain restrictions in the harvest thereof. It has been concluded that an allocation
allowing both consumptive and non-consumptive users of the live rock resource to remain in the
fishery may be accompanied by a relatively higher net benefit to society than any of the other
proposed allocation including the no action alternative.

The permit requirement is deemed necessary to identify the industry participants and to monitor
and enforce any rules adopted for the fishery. A definition of OY is deemed appropriate if live rock
is to be included in the management unit. The appropriate definition of OY depends on the type of
restrictions imposed on the harvest of live rock.


                                     Determination of a Major Rule

Pursuant to E.O. 12866, a regulation is considered a "significant regulatory action" if it is likely to
result in: a) an annual effect on the economy of $100 million or more; b) a major increase in costs
or prices for consumers, individual industries, Federal, State, or local government agencies, or
geographic regions; or c) significant adverse effects on competition, employment, investment,
productivity, innovation, or on the ability of United States-based enterprises to compete with
foreign-based enterprises in domestic or export markets.

The entire Florida commercial harvest sector of the live rock fishery is valued at about $628,000
exvessel which is significantly less than $100 million. Even if the fishery in other states were
accounted for, it is very unlikely that the total value would exceed $1 0 0 million. The proposed
actions in this plan amendment apply to live rock harvests in the EEZ under the jurisdiction of the
Gulf Council and South Atlantic Council. Given the size of the fishery and the segment of the
fishery directly affected by the proposed regulation, it is concluded that any revenue or cost
impacts on the fishery would be significantly less than $100 million annually.

In the event that an outright prohibition or severe restriction on the harvest of live rock is adopted,
a major cost increase (in terms of forgone profits) to the industry will ensue. As long as the
reduction in domestic production is offset by other supply sources of live rock, prices to consumers
are expected to not increase significantly. The possibility of outright ban or severe restriction in
the harvest of live rock may be expected to have a significant adverse effect on employment,
productivity, and investment; likewise such ban or severe restriction would render the domestic
industry less competitive in the international market, specifically in Canada and England.

Based on the foregoing, it is concluded that this regulation if enacted would constitute a
"significant regulatory action" under some of the mentioned criteria.


                                 Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analysis

Introduction

The purpose of the Reaulatorv Flexibilitv Act is to relieve small businesses, small organizations, and
small governmental entities from burdensome regulations and record keeping requirements. The
                                                                                                     -
category of small entities likely to be affected by the proposed regulatory amendment -is that of
commercial businesses currently engaged in the harvest of live rock. The impacts of the proposed
action on these entities have been discussed above. The following discussion of impacts focuses
specifically on the consequences of the proposed action on the mentioned business entities. An
Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analysis (IRFA) is conducted to primarily determine whether the
proposed action would have a "significant economic impact on a substantial number of small
entities." Although an IRFA focuses more on adverse effects, determination of beneficial
significant effects is also an integral component of the analysis. In addition to analyses conducted
for the Regulatory Impact Review (RIR), the IRFA provides an estimate of the number of small
businesses affected, a description of the small businesses affected, and a discussion of the nature
and size of the impacts.

Determination of Sianificant Economic Imnact on a Substantial Number of Small Entities

In general, a "substantial number" of small entities is more than 20 percent of those small entities
engaged in the fishery (NMFS, 1992). It has been estimated that there are about 38 individuals
who are at least on a part-time basis engaged in the harvest of live rock. The Small Business
Administration (SBA) defines a small business in the commercial fishing activity as a firm with
receipts of up to $2.0 million annually. Since the proposed action will affect practically all
participants of the live rock harvest sector, the "substantial number" criterion will be met in
general.

Economic impacts on small business entities are considered to be "significant" if the proposed
action would result in any of the following: a) reduction in annual gross revenues by more than 5
percent; b) increase in total costs of production by more than 5 percent as a result of an increase in
compliance costs; c) compliance costs as a percent of sales for small entities are at least 10
percent higher than compliance costs as a percent of sales for large entities; dl capital costs of
compliance represent a significant portion of capital available to small entities, considering internal
cash flow and external financing capabilities; or e) as a rule of thumb, 2 percent of small business
entities being forced to cease business operations (NMFS, 1992).

In the event that a ban or severe restriction on the harvest of live rock is adopted for this plan
amendment, revenues to the affected individuals may be expected to be reduced by more than 5
percent. A switch from harvest of wild live rock to aquaculture in compliance with the proposed
action may be deemed to result in a significant increase in the operating and capital costs to
fishermen as a result of complying with the regulations. Considering that all participants in the
commercial live rock harvest fishery may be deemed small business entities, the issue of big versus
small business operations is not relevant in determining distributional/regional effects of regulations,
and it thus also rules out disproportionate effects on capital costs of compliance. A number of
current participants of the live rock harvest industry may be forced to cease business or switch t o
other operations if the more severe restrictions are adopted for the fishery. This number, however,
is not known.

It can be inferred from the foregoing discussion that the proposed regulation can be expected to
result in a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities in the commercial
live rock harvest sector. On this account, an IRFA has been prepared. The following comprises the
remaining portions of the IRFA.

          of
Ex~lanation Whv the Action is Beina Considered
                                                                                                      -
Refer to the section on Problems and Objectives in the RIR and to Section I of the amendment-
document.

gbiectives and Leaal Basis for the Rulg

Refer to the section on Problems and Objectives in the RIR and to Sections I and II of the
amendment document. The Magnuson Fishery Conservation and Management Act of 1976
provides the legal basis for the rule.

          Analvsis
Demoara~hic

Refer to the Coral Fishery Management Plan, as amended.

Cost Analvsi~

Refer to the Government Cost and Summary sections of the RIR.

          Effects Analvsig
Com~etitive

The industry is composed entirely of small businesses (harvesters and charter boats operations).
Since no large businesses are involved, there are no disproportional small versus large business
effects.

                                    Reaulation~
Identification of O v e r l a ~ ~ i n a

The proposed action does not create overlapping regulations with any state regulations or other
federal laws. Some of the proposed options may even render federal and state (Florida) rules
compatible.
Conclusion

The proposed regulation is concluded to have a significant economic impact on a substantial
number of small entities. In this regard, the foregoing information and pertinent portions of the RIR
are deemed to satisfy the analysis required under the RFA.


5.0   ENVIRONMENTAL CONSEQUENCES

      Habitat Loss: Hard bottoms and reef rubble from which live rock is removed contributes t o
      the habitat for reef dwelling organisms which include reef fish and ornamental fishes and
      invertebrates. There is concern that the removal of this material degrades the value of the
      habitat due to the slow rate of regeneration of the material. There is an estimated 19,691
      square miles of live bottom in the Gulf of Mexico.

      Aauarium Sales: Harvest of live rock at a level of about 500 tons per year is said by
      producers to be the backbone of the marine aquarium trade because it allows appropriate
      habitat for captive tropical fishes and invertebrates. Harvest of naturally occurring rock
      could be replaced by material from aquaculture operations.

      Ecosvstem Manaaement: An acceleration and continuation of removal of live rock can
      degrade the quality of fishery habitat, particularly if the activity is concentrated i n high use   .
      areas.
                                                                                                 -   -
      Aesthetic Values: Removal of coral or damaging coral reefs is already prohibited by federal
      and Florida regulations. However, the removal of showy material in areas frequented by
      divers would contribute to aesthetic degradation.

      Consistent Reaulation~: Only the state of Florida currently regulates harvest of live rock.
      Florida prohibits removal in its waters since 1989 and proposed a phase-out over a 3-year
      period of landings from the EEZ.
                                                          SUMMARY OF ENVIRONMENTAL CONSEQUENCES

                                                                 EFFECTS OF LIVE ROCK ALTERNATIVES
                                                                           ON THE ISSUES


                                                                        LIVE ROCK ALTERNATIVES

                                                        LIMIT HARVEST                                         PROHIBIT HARVEST

       ISSUES            No Action            Establish an               Limit              Prohibit all      Ptrase Out Harvest           Provide for           Permit
                                             Annual Quota            AccessIEffort           Harvests         Except Aquaculture           Aquaculture         Requirement
     Habitat LOSS      Loeeee increase      Loeees couM etebilize Losses could stabilize     No net loss          Short term loss;            from seed
                                                                                                                                           Ga~n                   No effect
                                                                                                               long term poss~blegaln        materlal



    Aquarium Sales     Profits stable or        Profits stable       Redistr~bute and      Adverse effects    Aquaculture could replace    Temporary Loss         No effect
                          increase                                  possible reductions                        wild product~on  wlthout
                                                                                                                     Interruption


      Ecosystem      Reef and hard bottom   Some level of loss to    Non-renewable          Benef~ts
                                                                                                   other      Short term loss; long term    Some Benef~t       Enforcement and
     ~~~~~~~~~t systems unprotected reef systems and hard                losses               speclee             potent~al benef~t                          protection enhanced
                                                  bottoms


      Aesthetic        Negative affects       Negatlve effects       Negative effects      Posltlve effects   Short term negative; long    Posltlve Effect        No effect
       Values                                                                                                       term posltlve



     Consistent       Not consistent with   Not consistent with     Not cons~stentwith     Cons~stentwlth      Cons~stentwlth Flor~da      Cons~stentwlth     Cons~stent  wlth
     Regulations      Florida regulat~ons    Florida approach         state approach        state approach    approach after closure of          approach
                                                                                                                                           Flor~da            Florida approach
                                                                                                                    w~ldharvest
.
Conclusion

                          -
Habitat of the Stocks Since corals are sessile animals the FMP section on Description of the
Stocks (5.01 and the FMP section on Description of the Habitat (6.0) adequately describe the
habitat of the stocks (105 pages in aggregate), including condition of the stocks as well as man-
induced and natural impacts to the habitat. Amendment 1 modified the FMP by including the
following updated revised subsections: 6.4 Habitat Information Needs; 6.5 Habitat Protection
Programs; and 6.6 Habitat Recommendations. These revisions are in Appendix A.

Phvsical Environment - The proposed actions in this amendment will have no adverse impact on the
physical environment.

                  -
Fisherv Resource The proposed actions are intended to maintain the coral, coral reefs, and live
rock and to prevent them from becoming overfished.

                      -
Human Environment Some marine life fishermen would be affected by restrictions intended to
conserve live rock. Long-term benefits are expected to exceed short-term loss.

Effect on Wetlands - The proposed amendment will have no effect on any flood plains, wetlands,
trails, or rivers.

Mitiaatina Measures Related to the Pro~osed         -
                                              Action Introduction of aquaculture would enhance
the hard bottom habitat and tend to mitigate earlier loss from harvest of the natural live rock.
Aquaculture would also reduce the economic loss to live rock harvesters who are displaced from      .
harvest of naturally occurring material and who elect to revert to aquaculture.
                                                                                            --
                                  -
Unavoidable Adverse E f f e m None: no change is proposed.

Relation Between Local. Short-Term Users of the Resource and Enhancement of Lona-Term
             -
Productivity (TObe added)

                                                        -
Irreversible or Irretrievable Commitment of Resourceg None.


6.0   TIME AND LOCATION OF PUBLIC HEARINGS

January 5    Savannah, Georgia                          January 13 Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina
                              -
             (7:00 p.m. 10:OO p.m.)                                            -
                                                                   (7:00 p.m. 10:OO p.m.)
             Holiday Inn Mid-town                                  Holiday Inn Wrightsville Beach
             7 100 Abercorn Street                                 1706 North Lumina Avenue

January 6    Duck Key, Florida                          January 19 Clearwater Beach, Florida
                              -
             (7:00 p.m. 10:OO p.m.)                                (8:30a.m.)
             Hawk's Cay Resort                                     Gulf of Mexico Fishery
             Mile Marker 61                                        Management Council meeting
             (10 miles north of Marathon)                          Clearwater Beach Hilton Resort
                                                                   71 5 S. Gulfview Boulevard
January 1 1 Pensacola, Florida
                              -
            (7:00 p.m. 10:OO p.m.)            (Week of February 7)
            Pensacola Civic Center                               St. Augustine, Florida
            201 East Gregory Street                              South Atlantic Fishery
                                                                 Management
                                                                 Council Meeting
                                                                 Ponce De Leon Hotel
Written comments on this draft must be received bv the resoonsible aaencies bv Januarv 15,
1994.




Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council
Lincoln Center, Suite 331
5401 West Kennedy Boulevard
Tampa, Florida 33609
813-228-2815

South Atlantic Fishery Management Council
Southpark Building, Suite 306
One Southpark Circle
Charleston, South Carolina 29407-4699
803-571-4366

National Marine Fisheries Service, Southeast Regional Office
9450 Koger Boulevard
St. Petersburg, Florida 33702
813-893-3 141

                                                                                                    -
7.0 LIST OF PREPARERS                                                                       -   -

Georgia Cranmore, Ecologist, National Marine Fisheries Service, Southeast Regional Office
Antonio Lamberte, Economist, Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council
Terrance Leary, Biologist, Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council
Roger Pugliese, Biologist, South Atlantic Fishew Management Council


8.0 LlST OF AGENCIES AND ORGANIZATIONS CONSULTED:

Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council
- Coral Advisory Panel
- Law Enforcement Advisory Panel
- Scientific and Statistical Committee
South Atlantic Fishery Management Council
- Coral Advisory Panel
- Habitat Protection Advisory Panel
- Scientific and Statistical Committee
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
- Office of General Counsel (SER)
- Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary
National Marine Fisheries Service (SER)
- Southeast Regional Office
- Southeast Fisheries Center
Florida Marine Life Association
Florida Marine Aquarium Society
Project Reefkeeper
Reef Relief
Florida Live Rock Alliance
Coral Reef Coalition
Nature conservancy
Florida Keys Audubon Society
The Nature Conservancy


9.0 OTHER APPLICABLE LAW

                           -
lmoacts on Other Fisheries Unregulated removal of live rock could reduce the available hard
bottom habitat for reef fish and invertebrates and subject coral reefs to damage from collectors.
Regulated harvest would reduce this adverse impact. Aquaculture by introduction of cultch
material has the potential of increasing the hard bottom habitat for reefal species.

Data Needs - Data needs and responsibilities are listed in Appendix A.

               -
Vessel Safetv The proposed actions do not impose requirements for use of unsafe (or other) gear
nor do they direct fishing effort to periods of adverse weather conditions.

Paoerwork Reduction Act   - (depends on permit options)
                                        -
Coastal Zone Manaaement Consistency The Assistant Administrator has determined that this -
proposed action will be implemented in a manner that is consistent to the maximum extent
practicable with the approved coastal zone management program of the affected states in the
management area. This determination has been admitted for review by the states under Section
307 of the Coastal Zone Management Act.

           -
Federalism This proposed action does not contain policies with federalism implications sufficient
to warrant preparation of a federalism assessment under E.O. 12612.

                                                     -
Effect on Endanaered Soecies and Marine Mammals The proposed amendment will have no effect
on endangered species and marine mammals. A Section 7 consultation was held for Amendment 1
with a "no jeopardy opinion" being rendered. The proposed actions do not alter provisions of the
FMP that would affect these animals. An additional Section 7 consultation on Amendment 2 is in
progress.



10.0 REFERENCES

Andrews, C. (1 990). The ornamental fish trade and fish conservation. Journal of Fish Biology 3 7
(Supplement A), 53-59.

Barger, S., pers. comm., Tampa, FL.

Blackburn. (August 1988). The Ecological Use of Live Rock. Fresh Water and Marine Aquarium
Vol. II, No. 8.

Bruce, A. J. (19741. Coral reef Caridea and "commensalism". Micronesica 12 (1):83-98.
Buddemeier, R.W. and S.V. Smith. (1988). Coral reef growth in an era of rapidly rising sea level:
predictions and suggestions for long-term research. Coral Reefs, 7:5 1-56.

Butler, M., Hunt, J., and W. Herrnkind. (In press). As reported in "The Lobster Newsletter":
Catastrophic Mortality of Sponges Affects Juvenile Spiny Lobster Populations. Volume 5,
December, 1992.

Caddy, J. F. 1993. Background concepts for a rotating harvesting strategy with particular
reference to the Mediterranean red coral, corallium rubrum. Marine Fisheries Review. 55(1), pp.
10-18.

Caldwell, R.L. (April 15, 19931, pers. comm., University of California, Berkeley.

Caribbean Fishery:Management Council. (In draft). Excerpts from the Initial Draft of the Coral FMP
for Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. ( Y . Sadovy, ed.). Hato Rey, PR.

Carpenter, K.E., R.I. Miclat, V.D. Albaladejo and V.J. Corpuz. (19811. The influence of substrate
structure on the local abundance and diversity of Philippine reef fishes. Proc. Fourth Int. Coral Reef
Symp., Manila 2:497-502.

Derr, M. 1992. Raiders of the reef. Audobon, 48, MarchIApril, 1992.
                                                                                                    -
Ehringer, J.N. and F.J. Webb, Jr. (1992). Assessment of "Live Rock" harvesting in Tampa Bay. -
Project Report, Florida Sea Grant. 2Opp.
                                                                                         -    -
Finch, D., Julius, B. and Lopez, Rafael. 1992. Assessment and restoration of damaged resources
in national marine sanctuaries: t w o vessel groundings in the Florida keys as an example.
Proceedings of the 1992 Coastal Society Conference, April 1992.

FMFC. (March 1991). Policy Options Regarding "Live Rock" with agenda attachments.
Tallahassee, FL.

FMFC. (April 1992). Economic Impact Review - Rule 46-42 FAC, Marine Life. Tallahassee, FL.

Gulf of Mexico Fisheery Management Council (19811. Fishery Management Plan for Gulf of Mexico
Reef Fish Resources. (GMFMC.) Tampa, FL.

Hanlon, R.T. and R.F. Hixon. (1986). Behavioral associations of coral reef fishes with the sea
anemone Condvlactig giaantea in the Dry Tortugas, Florida. Bull. Mar. Sci. 35(1):130-134.

Hixon, M.A. and J.P. Beets. (1993). Predation, prey refuges, and the structure of coral-reef fish
assemblages. Ecol. Monog. 63(1):77-101.

Hunloe, T.J. 1990. Measuring the value of the Great Barrier Reef. Austraiian Parks and
Recreation 26 (3) 1 1-15.

Januzzi, C. L. (Fall 19911. A Guide to Developing a Limited Entry Program for the Marine Life
Industry. University of Miami. Unpubl. ms. Key Biscayne, FL.

Jennison, B.L. (1981). Reproduction in three species of sea anemones from Key West, Florida.
Can. J. Zool. 59(9):1708-1719.
Kinzie, R.A. (197 11. The ecology of the gorgonians (Cnidaria, Octocorallia) of Discovery Bay,
Jamaica. PhD Diss., Tale Univ., 107pp.

Limbaugh, C. (1961 1. Cleaning symbiosis. Sci. Am. 205:42-49.

Londeree, R. pers. comm. Tampa Bay Saltwater. Tampa, FL.

Meesters, E., Kniin, R., Willemsen, P., Pennartz, R., Roebers, G. and R.W.M. van Soest. (1991).
Sub-rubble communites of Curacao and Bonaire coral reefs. Coral Reefs 10: 189-1 97.

NOAA, 1993. A Florida Key Sanctuary draft managment alternatives document.

Norris, M. D. B. and J. L. Wheaton. (December 19911. Synopsis of Live Rock Landings and
Historical Review of Issues. FDNR, Marine Research Institute. St. Petersburg, FL.

Oynes, C.C., pers. comm., Minerals Management Service, New Orleans, LA.

Pearce, D. W. 1990. Economics of natural resources and environment.

Randall, J.E. (1967). Food habits of reef fishes of the West Indies. In: Studies. Trop. Oceanogr.,
5, Miami. p. 665-847.

Roberts, C.M. and R.F.G. Ormond. (1987). Habitat complexity and coral reef fish diversity and        .
                                                                                                     .
abundance on Red Sea fringing reefs. Mar. Ecol. Prog. Ser. 41 :1-8.                        --
SAFMC, 1988. Amendment 1 t o the Fishery Management Plan for the SnapperIGrouper of the
South Atlantic Region.

Schmied, R., pers. comm. NMFS. St. Petersburg, FL.

spurgeon, J.P.G. 1992. The economic valuation of coral reefs. Marine Pollution Bulletin, Vol. 24,
No. 1 1, pp. 529-536.

Stone, A. (June 19911. Petition for Rulemaking and/or Fishery Management Plan Action to Prohibit
the Taking and Landing of Live Rock. Project ReefKeeper. Miami, FL.

Wetherell, V., pers. comm. Florida Department of Environmental Protection, Tallahassee, FL.

Wheaton, J. L. (April 1989). The Marine-Life Fishery for "Live Rock": Biological and Ecological
Assessment of the Product and Implications for Harvest. FDNR, Marine Research Institute. St.
Petersburg, FL.

Wheaton, J. L., pers. comm. Florida Department of Environmental Protection, Marine Research
Institute. St. Petersburg, Florida.
                                                      FIGURE 1 A




                 Seasonal Landings of Live Rock from the EEZ off Florida April 1990- July 1993.

l2OOOO   ,




             Seasonal Landings by Month of Live Rock from the EEZ off Florida, (FDEP)
                  FIGURE 1B

      SEASONAL LANDINGS OF LIVE ROCK
         FROM THE EEZ OFF FLORIDA
               (FROM FDER)




Live Rock Landings, 1991 - Feb., 1993




JAN   APR . JUL   '   OCT   '   JAN   '



           SouthIEast Coast       0 Coast
                                   West
                         FIGURE 2
     Live Rock Landings, 199 1 - Feb., 1993
               Collection Areas




                               Other
                               1.30%
      Unknown                                                     39.249




                   Lower Keys (1)              Dade c u t
                                                     o ny
                                               Upper Keys (744)




Landings by Area of Live Rock from the EEZ off Florida, (FDEP).

                             F-3
                                                                    FIGURE 3




                                                                               \

                    les.wl                              F     l                    180"WI
                m j o r Florida East C m s t Llve S o u d i n a Areas-
                      (Jan. 1991 - Feb. 1993)
                     (as a % of total State landings)
                        Area 748  -   39.2%
                        Area 744 - 11.3%
                        Area 1 -       8.5%




                    '
                    -.  Flo.da   Keys National Marine Sartu




G   v   l   t   o    -           Ezl

                                   =
                                                                  1 - 1
                                                                                   [24"NI
                         /                                  -
                                            FIGURE
Maior Florida West Coast Live Rock Landina
             (Jan. 1991 - Feb. 1993)
         (as a % of total State landings)
       Area 5   -   Tampa - 12.1 1%
       Area 6   -                -
                    Tarpon Springs 12.01%




                          '    20 Miles
                                            I
                                               FIGURE 5




                                                                  LEGEND
                                                      Hard       B o t t o m
                                                  0   Pos s i b l e       H a r d   Bot t o m




*circles only indicate existance of hard bottom and not actual total bottom area.

Draft distribution map of live bottom habitat in the South Atlantic Bight identified in the
SEAMAP bottom mapping program. (NOAA, SCWMRD, 1993)
                                                                        FIGURE 6




                                                  Trends in Monthly Live Rock Landings (EEZ 0%Florida 1990-1993).




                       Jan         Fcb     Mach      April      May        June        July   Aug   Sept   On       Nov   k.




..   State quota filled February 12.1993
     March 3 1,1993 Reliminary injunction pventing enforcementof state quofa issued.




                       Trends in Monthly Live Rock Landings from the EEZ off Florida (FDEP).
                                                                              F-7
                                              APPENDIX A


Habitat Information Need$

The following research needs relative to coral habitat are provided so that state, federal, and
private research efforts can focus on those areas that would allow the Councils to develop measure
to better manage coral and their habitat:

1. ldentify optimum environmental and habitat conditions that limit coral production;

2. Determine the relationship between coral reefs and estuarine habitat conditions;

3. Quantify the relationships between coral growth and production and habitat;

4. ldentify additional areas of particular concern for coral;

5. Determine methods for restoring reef habitat and/or improving existing environmental conditions
   that adversely affect reefs;

6. Identify mitigative methods for preserving andlor establishing reef;

7. Determine the impacts of trap fishing and trawling on coral and reef habitats.
                                                                                              -   -

Habitat Protection Proarams

State and federal agencies and laws and policies that affect coral habitat are found in Section 7.0
of the Coral EIS and FMP (1982). Specific involvement by other federal agencies are identified
below.

Office of Coastal Zone Management. Marine Sanctuaries Program, NOAA: Specifically, this
program manages and funds the marine sanctuaries program. On-site management and
enforcement are generally delegated to the states through special agreements. Funding for
research and management is arranged through grants.

National Marine Fisheries Sewice: The enactment of the Magnuson Act provides for exclusive
management of fisheries seaward of state jurisdiction. This includes both specific fishery stocks
and habitat. The process for developing FMPs is highly complex. It includes plan development by
various procedures through fisheries management councils. National Marine Fisheries Service
implements approved plans. The Coast Guard, National Marine Fisheries Service, and states
enforce fishery management plans. Fishery management plans for billfish, corals, and coral reefs,
coastal migratory pelagics, red drum, reef fish, shrimp, spiny lobster, stone crab, sharks, snapper
and grouper, and swordfish are in force in the Gulf of Mexico and South Atlantic.

National Park Service: National parks and monuments are under the jurisdiction of National Park
Service. Management, enforcement, and research are accomplished in house.

Minerals Management Service: This agency has jurisdiction over mineral and petroleum resources
on the continental shelf. Management has included specific lease regulations and mitigation of
exploration and production activities in areas where coral resources are known to exist.
Fish and Wildlife Service: Fish and Wildlife Service assists with environmental impact review,
develops biological resource evaluations, and administers the endangered species program with the
NMFS. In the Keys area, the Fish and Wildlife Service manages several national refuges for
wildlife.

Geological Survey: In the coral reef areas, the Geological Survey has conducted considerable reef
research and assisted or cooperated with other institutions and agencies to facilitate logistics and
support of coral reef research.

Coast Guard: The 1978 Waterways Safety Act charges the Coast Guard with marine
environmental protection. The Coast Guard is the general enforcement agency for all marine
activity in the federal zone. Among the duties are enforcement of sanctuary and fishery
management regulations, managing vessel salvage, and coordinating oil spill cleanup operations at
sea.

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers: The Corps contracts and regulates coastal engineering projects,
particularly harbor dredging and beach renourishment projects. The Corps also reviews and is the
permitting agency for coastal development projects, artificial reefs, and offshore structures.

Environmental Protection Agency: This agency has a general responsibility for controlling air and
water pollution. Disposal of hazardous wastes and point-source discharge permitting are
Environmental Protection Agency functions. Certain mineral and petroleum exploration and          -
production activities are managed by Environmental Protection Agency. Environmenta! reseacch
                                                                                                  -
germane to waste disposal and pollution also are funded.

Federal environmental agencies such as the National Marine Fisheries Service, Minerals
Management Service, Fish and Wildlife Service, and the Environmental Protection Agency also
analyze projects proposing inshore and offshore alterations for potential impacts on resources under
their purview. This is similar to the function of the Council's Habitat Protection Committees.
Recommendations resulting from these analyses are provided to the permitting agencies (the Corps
for physical alterations in inshore waters and territorial seas, the Minerals Management Service for
physical alterations in the Outer Continental Shelf or the offshore Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ)
and Environmental Protection Agency for chemical alterations). Even though the Corps of
Engineers issues permits for oil and gas structures in the EEZ, they only consider navigation and
national defense impacts, thus leaving the rest to the Department of the Interior, in a nationwide
general permit.

Environmental Protection Agency is the permitting agency for chemical discharges into the Gulf of
Mexico, under the National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) program of the Clean
Water Act for chemicals used or produced in the Gulf (i.e., drilling muds, produced water or
biocides) and then released, or under the Ocean Dumping Regulations of the marine Protection,
Research and Sanctuaries Act if the chemicals are transported into the Gulf for the purpose of
dumping. When discharge or dumping permits are proposed, federal and state Fish and Wildlife
Agencies may comment and advise under the Fish and Wildlife Coordination Act and National
Environmental Protection Act. The Council may do likewise under the Magnuson Act and National
Environmental Protection Act. The Councils also protect reef fish habitat under the Corals and
coral Reefs Fishery Management Plan.

Habitat Recommendation

The coral resources contribute to the food supply, economy, health of the nation, and provides
habitat for recreational and commercial fishing opportunities and aesthetic enjoyment. The
continued use of these resources can only be assured by the wise management of all aspects of
habitat. Increased productivity may not be possible without habitat maintenance and regulatory
restrictions.

Recognizing that all species are dependent on the quantity and quality of their essential habitats, it
is the policy of the Councils to protect, restore, and improve habitats upon which commercial and
recreational marine fisheries depend, to increase their extent and to improve their productive
capacity for the benefit of the present and future generations. This policy shall be supported by
three objectives which are to:

   1. Maintain the current quantity and productive capacity of habitats supporting important
      commercial and recreational fisheries, including their food base. (This objective may be
      accomplished through the recommendation of no loss and minimization of environmental
      degradation of existing habitat);

   2. Restore and rehabilitate the productive capacity of habitats which have already been
      degraded; and

  3. Create and develop productive habitats where increased fishery productivity will benefit
     society.

To achieve these goals the Councils have formed Habitat Protection Committees and Advisory
Panels. The purpose of the committees is to bring to the Council's attention activities that may -
affect the habitat of the fisheries under their management. The Councils pursuant t o the      - -
Magnuson Act, will use their authorities to support state and federal environmental agencies in
their habitat conservation efforts and will directly engage the regulatory agencies on significant
actions that may affect habitat. The goal is to ensure that habitat losses are kept t o the minimum
and that efforts for appropriate mitigation strategies and applicable research are supported.
                                        APPENDIX      B


          SOUTH ATLANTIC FISHERY MANAGEMENT COUNCIL HABITAT AND
                     ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION POLICY
                         (as amended- August , 199 1 )

POLICY:

SAFMC HABITAT AND ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION POLICY

Recognizing that all species are dependent on the quantity and environmental quality o f their
essential habitats, it is the policy of the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council to:

Protect, restore and develop habitats upon which commercial and recreational marine
fisheries depend, to increase their extent and t o improve their productive capacity f o r the
benefit of present and future generations. (For purposes of this policy, habitat is defined t o
include all those things physical, chemical and biological that are necessary t o the
productivity of the species being managed.)                                              -
                                                                                   -- -
Policy Objectives:
1)      To protect the current quantity, environmental quality and productive capacity of
        habitats supporting important commercial and recreational fisheries. (This objective
        will be accomplished through the recommendation o f no net loss or significant
        environmental degradation of existing habitat in the short term.)

2)     To support and promote the net gain of fisheries habitat as a long term objective t h a t
       will be accomplished through;

       a) the restoration and rehabilitation of the productive capacity of habitats w h ~ c h
       have already been degraded and;

       b ) the creation and development of productive habitats where increased fishery
       production is probable.

The Council shall assume an aggressive role in the protection and enhancement of hab~ta:s
important t o marine and anadromous fish. I t shall actively enter Federal decision-rnak.7:
processes where proposed actions may otherwise compromise the productivity of fishe-,,
resources of concern to the Council.
                                                                                                !Ado?.?? 4 .'>.3:
                                                                         S m C POLICY STAlX!4E\T C OXCER\lSG
                                                            DREDGING AM) DREDGE .MATERIAL DlSPOSAL A C m m ~ s



                                        APPENDIX C

                      SAFMC POLICY STATEMENT CONCERNING
               DREDGING AND DREDGE MATERIAL DISPOSAL ACTIVITIES
                      .   .
    an Dredged MatgCialPlSgosal Sites ( 0 n m
         The shortage of adequate upland disposal sites for dredged materials has forced dredging
operations to look offshore for sites where dredged materials may be disposed. These Ocean
Dredged Material Disposal Sites (ODMDSs) have been designated by the U.S. Environmental
Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (COE) as suitable sites for
disposal of dredged materials associated with berthing and navigation channel maintenance
activities. The South Atlantic Fishery Management Council (SAFMC; the Council) is moving t o
establish its presence in regulating disposal activities at these ODMDSs. Pursuant t o the
Magnuson Fishery Conservation and Management Act of 1976 (the Magnuson Act) , the regional
fishery management councils are charged with management of living marine resources and their
habitat within the 200 mile Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) of the United States. Insofar as
dredging and disposal activities at the various ODMDSs can impact fishery resources or
essential habitat under Council jurisdiction the following policies concerning its role in the
designation, operation, maintenance, and enforcement of activities in the ODMDSs:

Policies:
        The Council acknowledges that living marine resources under its jurisdiction a n d their
essential habitat may be impacted by the designation, operation, and maintenance of DDMDSs in
the South Atlantic. The Council may review the activities o f EPA, COE, the state Ports
Authorities, private dredging contractors, and any other entity engaged in activities which
impact, directly or indirectly, living marine resources within the EEZ.

       The Council may review plans and offer comments on the designation, maintenance, and
enforcement of disposal activities at the ODMDSs.

        ODMDSs should be designated or redesignated so as to avoid the loss of live or hard bottom
habitat and minimize impacts t o all living marine resources.

       Notwithstanding the fluid nature of the marine environment, all impacts from the
disposal activities should be contained within the designated perimeter of the ODMDSs.

      The final designation of ODMDSs should be contingent upon the development of su~table
management plans and a demonstrated ability to implement and enforce that plan. The Counc~l
encourages EPA t o press for the implementation of such management plans for all designated
ODMDSs.

     All activities within the ODMDSs are required t o be consistent with the approved
management plan for the site.

       The Council's Habitat and Environmental Protection Advisory Panel when requested by
the Council will review such management plans and forward comment t o the Council. The
Council may review the plans and recommendations received from the advisory sub-panel and
comment t o the appropriate agency. All federal agencies and entities receiving a comment or
recommendation from the Council will provide a detailed written response t o the Counci:
regarding the matter pursuant t o 16 U.S.C. 1852 (i). All other agencies and entities recelvlng
a comment or recommendation from the Council should provide a detailed .written response :       :
the Council regarding the matter, such as is required for federal agencies pursuant to 16 U.S.C.
1852 (i).
        ODMDSs management plans should indicate appropriate users of the site. These plans
should specify those entities/ agencies which may use the ODMDSs, such as port authorities,
the U.S. Navy, the Corps of Engineers, etc. Other potential users of the ODMDSs should be
acknowledged and the feasibility of their using the ODMDSs site should be assessed in the
management plan.

       Feasibility studies o f dredge disposal options should acknowledge and incorporate
ODMDSs in the larger analysis of dredge disposal sites within an entire basin or -oject. For
example, Corps of Engineers analyses of existing and potential dredge disposal sites for harbor
maintenance projects should incorporate the ODMDSs. as part of the overall analysis of dredge
disposal sites.

        The Council recognizes that EPA and other relevant agencies are involved in managing
and/or regulating the disposal of all dredged material. The Council recognizes that disposal
activities regulated under the Ocean Dumping Act and dredging/filling carried out under the
Clean Water Act have similar impacts t o living marine resources and their habitats. Therefore,
the Council urges these agencies apply the same strict policies t o disposal activities a t the
ODMDSs. These policies apply t o activities including, but n o t limited to, the disposal of
contaminated sediments and the disposal of large volumes of fine-grained sediments. The
Council will encourage strict enforcement of these policies for disposal activities in the EEZ.
Insofar as these activities are relevant t o disposal activities in the EEZ, the Council will offer
comments on the further development o f policies regarding the disposal/ deposition of dredged
                                                                                            -
materials.                                                                                   -
                                                                                       -   -
       The Ocean Dumping Act requires that contaminated materials n o t be placed 'in an
approved ODMDS. Therefore, the Council encourages relevant agencies to address the problem of
disposal of contaminated materials. Although the Ocean Dumping Act does not specifically
address inshore disposal activities, the Council encourages EPA and other relevant agencies t o
evaluate sites for the suitability of disposal and containment of contaminated dredged material.
The Council further encourages those agencies t o draft management plans for the disposal of
contaminated dredge materials. A consideration for total removal from the basin should also be
considered should the material be contaminated to a level that it would have t o be relocated away
from the coastal zone.


                      e-U           Rerm Cr-
        The use of underwater berms in the South Atlantic region has recently been proposed as a
disposal technique that may aid in managing sand budgets on inlet and beachfront areas. Two
types of berms have been proposed t o date, one involving the creation of a long offshore berm,
the second involving the placement of underwater berms along beachfronts bordering an inlet.
These berms would theoretically reduce wave energy reaching the beaches and/or resupply sand
to the system.

        The Council recognizes offshore berm construction as a disposal activity. As such, all
policies regarding disposal o f dredged materials shall apply t o offshore berm construction.
Research should be conducted t o quantify larval fish and crustacean transport and use of the
inlets prior t o any consideration of placement of underwater berms. Until the impacts of berm
creation in inlet areas on larval fish and crustacean transport is determined, the Council
recommends that disposal activities should be confined t o approved ODMDSs. Further, new
offshore and nearshore underwater berm creation activities should be reviewed under the most
rigorous criteria, on a case-by-case basis.
                                   . .
                           na
                      and B -         for Bear;h Renourtshment
       The Council recognizes that construction and maintenance dredging of the seaward
portions of entrance channels and dredging borrow areas for beach re nourishment occur in the
EEZ. These activities should be done in an appropriate manner in accordance with the policies
adopted by the Council.

        The Council acknowledges that endangered and threatened species mortalities have
occurred as a result of dredging operations. Considering the stringent regulations placed on
commercial fisherman, dredging or disposal activities should not be designed or conducted so as
t o adversely impact rare, threatened or endangered species. NMFS Protected Species Division
should work with state and federal agencies to modify proposals to minimize potential impacts
on threatened and endangered sea turtles and marine mammals.

       The Council has and will continue t o coordinate with Minerals Management Service
(MMS) in their activities involving exploration, identification and dredging/mining o f sand
resources for beach renourishment. This will be accomplished through membership on state
task forces or directly with MMS. The Council recommends t h a t live b o t t o d h a r d bottom
habitat and historic fishing grounds be identified for areas in the South Atlantic region t o
provide for the location and protection of these areas while facilitating the identification o f sand
sources for beach renourishment projects.


  en Water O I S ~
      The SAFMC is opposed t o the open water disposal of dredged material into aquatic-systems
which may adversely impact habitat that fisheries under Council jurisdiction are dependent
upon.

        The Council urges state and federal agencies, when reviewing permits considering open
water disposal, t o identify the direct and indirect impacts such projects could have on fisher~es
habitat.

       The SAFMC concludes that the conversion of one naturally functioning aquatic system a t
the expense of creating another (marsh creation through open water disposal) must be justified
given best available information.
                       NEW LIVE ROCK ISSUES TO BE ADDRESSED


1.   The amendment has no discrete problem statement to be related t o FMP objectives. (NOAAGC)

     Recommendation: List problems and objectives and refer to Problem 1 in FMP: "Degradation
     of stocks through natural and man-made impacts". Revise Objective 2 to include live rock:
     "Minimize, as appropriate, adverse human impacts on coral, coral reefs, and live rock".

2.   Include an option for OY if management by quota is chosen (NOAAGC)

     Recommendation: Add an option D.3.:        "OY for live rock to be that established by quota or
     which may be allowed by permit".

3.   The redefinition for allowable octocorals allows removal of only that portion of substrate covered
     by the holdfast. That is insufficient to provide anchorage according t o collectors. (GMFMC Coral
     AP)

     Recommendation: Allow removal of a portion of the substrate not t o exceed 3 inches beyond
     the holdfast. (GMFMC Coral AP)

4.   That portion of the Gulf of Mexico west of Apalachicola has only small, scattered patches of live
     rock which are valuable for reef fish habitat and as fishing sites. (GMFMC Coral AP and
     Pensacola Public Hearing)                                                                  --
     Recommendation: Consider more stringent measures for live rock removal in that area; i.e.,
     lower quotas, smaller trip limits, etc.

5.   Chipping or breaking up of rock ledges is causing substantial damage to reef and ledge
     structures. (Pensacola Public Hearing)

     Recommendation: Allow take only of loose rock or rubble, and prohibit chipping or breaking u p
     of rock reefs or ledges.

6.   Some harvesters as well as conservation groups recommended a limited annual harvest and trip
     limits during a phase out period. (GMFMC Coral AP and Pensacola Public Hearing)

     Recommendation: Establish an annual quota based on recent production t o prevent an
     acceleration of harvest in the final years. The 1992 production was about 400 tons. A fishing
     year could begin in March as that is normally a high production month. Trip limits of 500 pounds
     were most frequently recommended.

7.   Restrict access t o present participants. (GMFMC Coral AP)

     Recommendation: There are currently about 40 participants licensed in Florida. The Council's
     control date is t o be published this month. Persons in other states could submit sales receipts
     to qualify as permittees during a phase out period.

8.   No provision is made for the hobbyist [B-5(19)1.

     Recommendation: Consider a small trip limit for recreational hobbyists of 25-75 pounds. The
     state of Florida did not provide for recreational harvest of live rock during the phase out period,
     however.
EFBNG BOOK ADD
                              SUMMARY COMMENTS
                              CORAL PUBLIC HEARING
                                                                T~          3                             C/ (a)
                               DUCK KEY, FLORIDA
                                JANUARY 6, 1994


                                                                             70 persons attending


  Biscayne National Park representative stated concern over loss of substrate from a variety of
  causes.

  Project Reef Keeper recommended a ban on live rock harvest. If phased out, it should be 32
  percent decrease each year over three years.

  Fish dealers expressed need of live rock for captive breeding of aquarium fishes. Suggested
  1,000 pounds per week, per vessel.

  Florida Marine Life Association recommended permit limitation for wild harvest based on past
  participation, no immediate closure, trip limits. Noted resource is in trillions of tons.

  Time is needed to enter aquaculture and allow for first harvest.
                                                                                             -   -

  Attorney for live rock alliance notes no basis for closure of live rock harvest, harvesters want
  to take only loose rubble rock, suggests limited access, trip limits of 1,500 pounds, allow n o
  chipping of rock.

  Some were concerned that investment in aquaculture would be too costly.

  Aquaculture is feasible but State of Florida is foot dragging on the permit process.               No
  complete aquaculture system has been permitted to date.

  Harvesters hope for a federal aquaculture system due to problems with state permitting.

  Would like a phase out to prevent imported material to take over the market.

  Divers see no lobsters in rubble rock zone.

  Center for Marine Conservation supports ban on live rock. Violates law by taking prohibited
  corals. Live rock is a base for fisheries, not environmentally rational, would support a phase
  out of one to t w o years.

  Labor costs in third world are less for collecting but freight costs are the only thing keeping it
  out of the market at present.

  Florida now charges $200 non-refundable up front fee for live rock lease, plus additional
  charges as permit proceeds through the process.

  There was discussion concerning the fact that collecting live rock may be considered mining
  and therefore necessitates a permit from another state agency.
                                                                                                                        -
BRIEFING BOOK ADDIT
                              PUBLIC HEARING ON CORAL AMENDMENT 2

                                            PENSACOLA, FLORIDA

                                               JANUARY 11, 1994

                                                                               40 PERSONS IN ATTENDANCE


   1.    A representative of a diving school presented a petition with 900 signatures objecting to live rock removal.
         [Tab B. No. 5(10)]

   2.    A Siem Club representative requested a three-year moratorium during which a comprehensive impact study
         on the impact of removal of rock can be conducted.

   3.    Live rock collectors noted that other factors besides collecting affect the environment. A three-year period
         to phase in aquaculture may not be long enough; five years may be required.

   4.    A collector stated that breaking up of reef and ledges should be prohibited, but removal of rubble pieces
         should be allowed.

   5.    Several speakers noted that the bottom off the Florida Panhandle is mostly sand with little hard bottom.
         There are active programs of artificial reef construction to provide bottom relief for reef fishes. Natural
         relief in this area is far offshore and in limited quantity and should be protected. Aquaculture would be
         a solution.

   6.    A diver reported finding crowbars, picks, chisels, and other tools used to break up and remove ledges for
         live rock harvest.

   7.    One collector stated that he collects only in areas where rock rubble is abundant. He suggested a means
         of identifying cultch material used in aquaculture with plastic tags or some other means.

   8.    One collector noted that he collects rubble from coralline algae. He recommended trip quotas with
         replacement of upland material.

   9.    A representative from Project Reef Keeper recommended a phase out of 33 percent per year to stimulate
         interest in aquaculture.

   10.   One individual noted that live rock harvest is only a small part of live bottom loss. There are other man-
         made perturbations which have far more impact.

   11.   A charterboat operator noted his need for live bottom and reef sites for fishing and there were enough other
         harmful impacts without live rock removal.
                               R e e f            r
                                         S c a ~ es
                                                                     385   745   2781                p.   02

(SYn;tf         A )
               U -                                                                                   -
                              EIORAN. H ~ R A& E ~ u m - ~ L P
                                             N
                                          .\TTORNE;E'B AT L ~ W
                                          046 mn-~      a? r n : ~
                                                           .




                                          October 7, 1993


 GULF OF MEXICO FISHERY
 MANAGEMENT COUNCIL MEMBERS
          Re:    Proposed Measures on Uve Rock Collection
 Dear Council Member!

         Please be advised that our Law Firm represents the intdresu of "The Live Rock
 Nlinncd', a g r ~ b p ayyiudnatcly rhlny (30') papla who are enga8ed m either the
                       uf
 collection of the live rock or disrributiodrztailing of the product. We wanted to take yet
 anothar oppofiunity to edviuiu the Q u l ~ c i l lakc a rcaaoncd and objcc~lvc
                                                   ~~                           r~priach the
                                                                                           to
 regulation of live rock and to avoid being influenced by the scare tactks being employed by
 ~ r liuknrioncd, but u d o r r ~ ~ yclauru aud u~yi~l;ratiuns
       l                            cb                          caUing for a total prohibition of
 live rock collcctjon.

          I would like to bepin by giving an idea of what rho Live Rock Aniance & advocating: ;

          1.     A system of licensing for all persons involyed i the collection o live rock; .
                                                                 n                f
        2.      Lirmted entry into the fishery;
          .
          3      A limit on the amount of rock which wuld bc Lalroc~ a per-trip bss
                                                                    ou           ai;

        4.      Licensing ~ n l fw those pcoplc whn have been involved in the fishery in the
                                y
 past and dcerive a certain percentage of income from the collection and/or sale of live rock; ;
 aud

        5.     Roguhtians al& l-              ~        UP
                                         t l ~011~bLivrl udy lubblc ruck Irl   h e wdrere   of zne
 Atlantic and d i a o w a n a nf cnllacttrrn nf "rhippd rack" in sdd water:.

        The Live Rock Alliance consists exclusively of small collectors who recognize the need
 for rcgulalion uf the industry and want to educate the pubUc as to the nature of the marine
 ecosystem and avoid the negative impacts thcreto. Unfortunately, there is a perception i    n
 some circles that all live rock collectors are hesponsible and uncaring people who vigorousty
 attack our reef with picks and explosives; this is certainly not the case...
                           R e e f            r
                                     S c a ~ e5




October 7 , 1993
Page   2




        It would bc helpful if ad persons involved with this issue wem ware of just exactly
what "rubble rock" is. Witb regard to the waters of the Atlantic Ocean off of the Keys,'
rubble rock ip n~thing more than ancient coral mck, which has k e . n mlnni7erl hy vnrimls,
microarganjsms, plants and animals. The rock which is colonized comes from the coral
substrate and temporarily buried rock which has bccn rtwdtad theuC;h the action of the
elements. b r a y , tens of thousands of acres of rubble r'ock exist i the waters off the,
                                                                       n
                                           s
Florida Keys and, whde the rock itself i finite in the technical sense, the colonization
                                                                              n
process is perperud and renewable. We rock does, i fact, play a major role i the marine
                                                      n
environment, but It must bz understood that there is a constant tnmover and recolanuation.
oi live rockI 'fie.action nf the ele,ments cause large areas of rock to be covered and.
uncovered in a continuous cycle.

       One of the forcmost e x p m c rubble rock t h a c;ouut~y, Roy L Calhcll;
                                        m               l
Yrofessor of Integrative Biology a the University of California a Berkeley, has been
                                   t                                  t
studying cord rubble communities for over thiny (30) years and his knowledge is impressive:
7b~ugh   Jennifer Whemnn, Siologht far the State of Florida, has recently attacked Dr,
                                                r
CaldweiPs studies and conclusions stating that D .Caldwell is actually a behaviorist studying
n3ari!1t i~~vactcbmteq must
                     it       be pointed out that the iavertsbrates studied are those that
                                                   r
traditionally colonhe rubble rock and, QS pan of D .CddweU's studios, hi: has probab)ly
more data and knowledge concerning live rock than anyone i the country.
                                                             n
       Dr. Caldwell is an advocate of bath natural and cultured live rock collection, while
wi~ting U t t he has 'ha p ~ ,nr pw,sntrt finhnt:ial o ottiei ~ i e r m y buxine~ror person
         Q ~  h                   t                   r             tu
                                              .
invoked in the harvest or sale o live rock. ." IIis advocacy af live rock mllcctio~l
                                f                                                     CUIUW
from his belief that the benefits of fostering an interest in, and a knnwledge, of nur reef
comunitics through our aquarium indsstry fidlyjustitjics the "minimal"impacts of collection.
DrI CaMw8ll points out that he believes the sentiment to prohibit the collection and sale of
live rock seems to be an overreaction by a wcll intcntioned, bbt h s i d 6 1 1 ~ c dgroup. o
                                                                                    ,       f
environrne.ntii1 activists who "seek protectioo of ow reef3 by imposing a complete
morat~riura most h m activitica Involving their we." Dr.Caldwr?ll states that coral
             04
mbbh is a dynamk rasowcc brd b r;orwti~~ltiy    turning over'. Hc: ir~rliaicsthat:

              While. same indiuiduals have argued that rubble lo not readily
              renewable, they tend to base their conclusions on the
              production of new coral or corellinc algae substrate. The fact
              if only a parkinn of the standing map nf con1 nlhbk comes
              directly &om liviqj coral or coralhe algae. Much of it is being
              recycled from coral rack that is tempthrily buried, washed off
              shore, or erodes from .ancient formations. From m tagging
                                                                   y
                              R e e f            r
                                        S c a ~ es




October 7 , 1993
Page   3




              studies i Panama, I have followed pieces of rubble for up to
                       n
              ten (10) years Many pieces were buried aftzr storms only to
              reappear several years later and quickly be recolonized. After
              heavy storms, we have witnessed entire fubble bars created
              &om beach deposits be colonized in a matter of months and,
              after a year or two, disappear a they were washed back on
                                               s
              shore.     Estimates of substrate availability m s take into
                                                                ut
              consideration these long-standing sources and should not be
              based solely on cunent production o coral or coralline. While
                                                     f
              it is true that harvesting cord rubble will have a small impact
              on total substrate available for livc rock formation, the effect is
              probably insimcant when compared to the total supply
              substrate present. At several sites in Panama, I have rernmed         -    - .
              &om sea grass beds all large pieerr of coral rubble wer area
              of up to twb hectares. When the site8 were left undisturbed for
              less than two years, I could not detect significant differences i n
              the availability of rubble or the infauna community when
              compared to measurements taken prior to the removals.

Though I have taken the liberty ofquoting D .Caldwell, I am enclosing two separate pieces
                                             r
of corresponddncc daud March 26, 1 9 and April 15, 1993,respectively. Though it will
                                        93
take some time, I would suggest that you carefully examine both pieces o correspondence
                                                                            f
                                   r
to determine f r yourself that D .CaldwrU-notonly has the credentials and research to
               o
support his conclusions, but is also providing an abjective scientific approach to the issue of
live rock collection.

       Though I am not an expert in this field, I have been an avid diver for approximately
twenty-fivz (25) years and much of that diving took place i the Atlantic Ocean off of the,
                                                            n
Florida Keys. I am aware of the vast quantities of rubble rock available for harvest and. I
a also aware of the constant turnover ofthis resource and its dynamic nature. In my work
 m
with some o thC modern day trmsufi: salvors, 1have had the occasion to exldminc areas i
            f                                                                             n
sand flats where salvors had worked and uncovered coral rubble i attempting to locate
                                                                    n
treasure. These areas quickly turned into flourishing mini-habitats i an otherwise barren
                                                                     n
tenah. The rock was quickly colonized by various plant$ and animals which, in turn,
brought in all varieties of M throughout the food chain. Further, these newly created live
rock communities were often reburied by the action of the elements.
                           R e e f   S c a ~ es
                                              r




October 7 ,    1993
Page   4




        & council members, I rsalize thcrt you arc not irnn~ullcI.,) public sentiment nor the
lobbying effortsof vanow envkonrnentd goup. I simply w u t to irwurc that you y ~ ~ v i i i s
primary emphasis to your         obhgntions undcr the terms of the Mamuson Fisncry and
C~u~crvation   Managanent Act of 1976. Any regulaciods promulgated pursuant to thb Act :
must be based nn the best scientific informnuan available aud we feel confident mat we are
p r o v i a you with the best and most obicctive scientItic data available. It is not our.
intention to make threats at this point, but you also must realize that you are dealing with
the livrlihaod of my client4 and while wc rcw&c that the need for regulation, and
such regulation, we will not sit idly by and w a i d l at: loss of this livelrhood through the
efforts of 'bcfl-intentio~lrd mlsidormed people". We want to cooperate and work with
                            but
the countils to the bcst o uur abUdes, but 1 assur6 you that our clients 318 nll prepared to
                          f
fight any attempts at prohihitinn nf the colleation of live ruck.
        I a i the process of attempting to obtain relevant portions ofDr. Caldwell's actual
           m n
studies and wiU forward these mterials on t yni~
                                            o      lipon rwipt.

       I r e a h that I have been ralhcr long-winded in this correspondence, but when you
realize how seriously yaw decisions #affectmy clientg, I bellevc that thr time ~ c ~ ~ ito ~ r l
                                                                                         r
thoroughly rxarnine thin ~ ~ p o n d c lits enclosures arrd any other data provided in the
                                            ~c~,
future, is well spent. Let me express the sinma thanks of all of my cknts for nhjmcively
t~i~~uiubigLssues.
            the

                                            Vexy truly ybus,



                                                       w.
                                            E ~ A R D HOW
                                            For the Firm
EWH:xnma
Enclosures
                                                                                                r;,.:
                                                                                                  .
                                                                                                i..     ..
                                                                                                             ' JT . ..-
                                                                                                                  'I,"




                                                                                    Operations Center
                                                                                    November 17, 1993
    Project
  Reef Keeper                  (1   Mr. Thomas Wallin, Chairman
                                    Gulf of Mexico Fisherv Management Council
                                    5401 W. Kennedy lid. --     use
                                                                 331
                                    Tampa, FL 33609

                                                                                    re: Live Rock Collection and
                                                                                    the Corals & Coral Reefs FMP


                               I
  OPERATIONS CENTER
       Suite 162
     2809 Bird Ave                  Dear Mr. Wallin:
        Florida 33133
   M~ami.
                                            Now that the Council is going to hold public hearings on how to deal
                                    with live rock collection, Project ReefKeeper and the other 143 organizations
                                    endorsing the attached letter urge you and all other Council members to
                                    reconsider your preferred management option. We ask that you change
                                    your preferred option and instead take real substantive action to end live
                                    rock collection as an amendment to the joint Corals and Coral Reefs Fishery
                                    Management Plan for the Gulf of Mexico and the South Atlantic.

    CARIBBEAN REGION                       It is simply not good enough to write into the FMP a mere intention to
          Suite 1271                ban live rock collection three years from now. Unfortunately, that is all that
       Castillo Del Mar
lsla Verde. Puerto Rim 00913        the Gulf Council's preferred option for live rock management would amount
                                    to. Only you and your fellow Council members can see to it that real
                                    reduction or prohibition of live rock collection actually becomes a reality.

                                            Project ReefKeeper and 143 other groups strongly support the
                                    immediate prohibition of live rock collection. But if there must be a phase-
                                    out of live rock collection, then we must insist on a three-year tiered phase-
                                    out, with gradual evenly diminishing collection quotas over the 3 years.
                                    Starting with the best estimate of landings for 1993, a tiered phase-out
     PACIFIC REGION                 should reduce that amount by 33 percent each year until the landings quota
       Suite 106-542
     350 Ward Avenue                reaches zero.
   Honolulu. Hawaii 96814
                                            Such a three-year tiered phase-out of collection will ensure
                                    immediate and increasing relief to the habitat upon amendment ratification
                                    by the Secretary of Commerce. It will prevent the escalation of live rock
                                    collection over the next 3 years that would otherwise come in response to
                                    closed collection in the U.S. Caribbean and increased market demand. It
                                    will discourage the entry into the "fishery" of new collectors. It will remove
                                    any incentive for present collectors to go into debt to expand their collection
                                    capabilities. And it will cause an immediate incentive for those same
                                    collectors to aggressively pursue aquaculture now in order to make up for
                                    the tiered quota reductions for wild live rock.
LATIN AMERICAN REGION
   Calle 60 No. 3 8 7 4
     Merida, Yucatan
      Mexico 97000
       That scenario is the only one that makes sense in order to protect the
habitat while providing for a rational and orderly transition to live rock
aquaculture.

       The exact opposite will happen if you go along with just setting a date
three years from amendment ratification for cessation of live rock collection.

       Think about it, please, and factor in human nature. During those 3
years, market demand will cause wild live rock collection to increase instead
of decrease. For at least the first 2 of those 3 years, there will be no pressure
to move towards aquaculture. But there will be plenty of market demand to
bring new collectors into the field, and to push present collectors to increase
their collecting capacity. Finally, when the closure date begins to loom on
the horizon, the drive will be to collect even more and more in order to build
up inventories as a hedge against the closure. There will no longer be
enough time to make aquaculture work before the closure of wild live rock
collection.
                                                                       -   -

       And then the other shoe will fall -- live rock collectors will come to you
and demand that the collection closure date be postponed into the future, so
they can do what they would have done in the first place had there been a
tiered collection phase-out schedule in place.

       We hope that is not what you will allow. We would find such a
         --
scenario and its attendant devastation of coral habitat -- to be utterly
unacceptable and unconscionable. And so would the millions of people
represented by the 144 groups endorsing the attached letter requesting a
cessation of live rock collection in the South Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico.

       Please don't let them   -- and our coral habitats -- down.
      Thank you for your consideration.

                                                  Sincerely,




                                                  ALEXANDER STONE
                                                  Director
AS:hm
enc.
                                                            TAB         B            ~ 0 . 5

              National Alliance
            to Protect Liue Rock

                                                          November 17, 1993
Mr. Thomas Wallin, Chairman
Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council
5401 W. Kennedy Blvd. -- Suite 331
Tampa, FL 33609


Dear Mr. Wallin:

        The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council will be taking action soon on
live rock collection in federal waters off Florida, Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi and
Texas.                                                                              --
       The 144 undersigned organizations      -- representing millions of concerned citizens
-- are opposed to any collection of coral or live rock within state or federal waters.
       It takes decades for countless generations of fragile, dime-sized coral polyps to
build a single coral head -- and centuries to build coral reefs. Yet coral reefs and hard-
bottoms in the Gulf of Mexico are in trouble and literally being chiseled away at an
alarming rate due to live rock collection.

        Live rock is coral reef substrate or rubble with attached marine life such as
sponges, anemones and soft corals. Collected live rock cannot be replenished on a
biological time scale, as can all other fishery resources. It follows that each time a piece
of live rock is removed from the reef, it is unlikely that it will be renewed in our children's
                          --
-- or our grandchildren's lifetime.
        Finally, live rock formations provide essential habitat to countless marine
creatures. Continued collection of live rock seriously disrupts -- or even destroys --
entire reef microcommunities.

       We therefore respectfully request that the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management
Council move without delay to ban the collection of live rock within federal waters of the
Gulf of Mexico because live rock collection is mining rather than harvesting of a
renewable fishery resource, and because the microhabitat value of live rock justifies a
complete prohibition on its collection.

                                                          Respectfully submitted,

                               National      Organizations
American Littoral Society                             Sandy Hook
Dery Bennett                                          Highlands, NJ 07732
Center for Marine Conservation                    One Beach Dr. SE -- Ste 304
Paul G. Johnson                                   St. Petersburg, FL 33701

Compuserve Scuba Forum                            334 Portico Ct.
Frank Howard                                      Chesterfield, MO 63017

Environmental Defense Fund                        Rockridge Market Hall
Rodney M. Fujita, Ph.D                            5655 College Ave.
                                                  Oakland, CA 94618

Greenpeace                                        P.O. Box 384
Bruce Jaildagian                                  New Smyrna Bch, FL 32170

International Marine Alliance                     201 West Stassney -- Ste 408
Vaughn R. Pratt                                   Austin, TX 78745-31 56

Island Conservation Effort                        90 Edgewater Dr. #901
Martha Walsh-McGehee                              Coral Gables, FL 33133

National Audubon Society                          Scully Science Center
Carl Safina                                       306 South Bay Avenue
                                                  Islip, NY 11751            .-
National Coalition for Marine Conservation        5113 Bissonet Drive
Bethlyn McCloskey                                 Metaire, LA 70003

Natural Resources Defense Council                 40 West 20th St.
Lisa Speer                                        New York, NY 10011-4211

Project ReefKeeper                                2809 Bird Ave -- Ste 162
Alexander Stone                                   Miami, FL 33160

Sierra Club National Marine Committee             1414 Hilltop Dr.
Shirley Taylor                                    Tallahassee, FL 32303

Underwater Society of America (NY)                10 Redfield St.
Rick D'Amico                                      Rye, NY 10580

World Wildlife Fund                               1250 24th St, N.W.
Tundi Agardy                                      Washington, DC 20037


                          State   and Local Organizations
                                      Florida
1000 Friends of Florida                         524 E College Ave.
James Murley                                    Tallahassee, FL 32301

Alachua Audubon Society                           P.O. Box 140464
John C. Winn                                      Gainesville, FL 32614-0464

Audubon Society of the Everglades                 P.O. Box 6762
Elwood Bracey                                         W. Palm Bch, FL 33405
Audubon Society, Panhandle Chapter                    4330 Maywood Drive
Ed Hebb                                               Marianna, FL 32446

Byrne-Rinehart Associates                             5830 SW 73 St.
Thomas E. Byrne                                       Miami, FL 33143

Central Florida Pleasure Divers                       3022 Hidalgo Dr.
Dee Parkes                                            Orlando, FL 32812

Citizens for Wekiva Springs                           1800 Wekiwa Circle
Dean E. Mair                                          Apopka, FL 3271 2

The Conservancy                                       1450 Merrihue Drive
Christina Ramsey                                      Naples, FL 33942

Coral Reef Community Foundation                       633 Island Dr.
Alice Biays                                           Key Largo, FL 33037

Environmental Coalition of Broward                    521 S. Andrew Ave.   -- Ste 3
Dianne Petitjean                                      Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33301

Florida Audubon Society                               460 Highway 436 -- Ste 200      -
Bernard J. Yokel. Ph.D                                Casselberry, FL 32707

Florida Defenders of the Environment                  P.O. Box 8
Robin Hart                                            Sarasota, FL 34230

Florida Environmental Alliance                        P.O. Box 254
Linda Young                                           Tallahassee, FL 32302

Florida Keys Audubon Society                          P.O. Box 633
Curtis Kruer                                          Big Pine Key, FL 33043

Florida Keys Campaign -- Clean Water Action           P.O. Box 137
Joyce Newman                                          Big Pine Key, FL 33043

Florida Keys Environmental Fund                       P.O. Box 448
Marabeth Causey                                       Islamorada, FL 33036

Florida Keys Initiative   -- The Nature Conservancy   201 Front St.
Mark L. Robertson                                     Key West, FL 33040

Florida Keys Project -- The Wilderness Society        8065 Overseas Highway
Debbie Harrison                                       Marathon, FL 33050

Florida League of Anglers                             P.O. Box 1 109
Norma Stoppelbein                                     Sanibel, FL 33957

Florida Wildlife Federation                           P.O. Box 687
Manley Fuller                                         Tallahassee, FL 32314
HML Ecology Club                               930 W. 80th PI.
Lucy Cifuentes                                 Hialeah, FL 33014

lnnerspace Visions Divers                      Box 557095
Doug Perrine                                   Miami, FL 33255

lzaac Walton League of the Florida Keys        P.O. Box 112
Svenn Lindskold                                Islamorada, FL 33036

KSC Barracudas                                 1840 Crawford Ave.
Grace Hampton                                  Merritt Isle, FL 32303

Last Stand                                     1330 Atlantic Blvd
Jim McLernan                                   Key West, FL 33040

Manasota-88                                    5314 Bay State Rd.
Gloria C. Rains                                Palmetto, FL 34221

Ocean Expo Associates                          2233 Keystone Blvd
Susan M. Payette                               N. Miami, FL 33181

Ocean Trust International                      P.O. BOX 52-0573      -
                                                                          -   -

Sharon Kegeles                                 Miami, FL 33152

Ormond Anchor Chasers                          2609 N. Peninsula Dr.
John Lane                                      Daytona Bch, FL 321 18

Palm Beach Diving Association                  180 East 13th St.
Rodney Lee, Sr.                                Riviera, Beach, FL 33404

People Organized to Prevent Pollution          18748 Drayton St.
Betty Tillis                                   Spring Hill, FL 34610

Project Environmentally Safe Shores            1511 Hudson Rd
Doug Driscoll                                  Venice, FL 34293

Reef Relief                                    P.O. Box 430
DeeVon Quirolo                                 Key West, FL 33040

Save the Wildlife                              351 East Fourth St.
Cindy Westra                                   Chuluota, FL 32766

Sierra Club Florida Chapter                    18311 SW 89 Ct.
Sandy Jensen                                   Miami, FL 33157

South Florida Underwater Photography Society   19101 Mystic Pte. Dr. #609
Cynthia Prettyman                              N. Miami Bch, FL 33180

Suncoast Reef Rowdies                          P.O. Box 41 1
Robert Bourke                                  Pinellas Park, FL 34664
University of Miami Marine Science Ass'n     Marine Science Program U.M.
Michael P. Connell                           Coral Gables, FL 33124

Upper Keys Citizens Association              P.O. Box 141
Dagny Johnson                                Tavernier, FL 33070

Volusia-Flagler Sierra Club Group            P.O. Box 1853
Jack Kleinberg                               Ormond Bch, FL 32175
Watercolor Divers                            P.O. Box 9131
Charlene R Johnson                           Ocala, FL 32670

The Wildlife Connection                      351 E. 4th Street
Heidi Higdon                                 Chuluota, FL 32766

Wildlife Education & Rehabilitation Center   P.O. Box 1418
Michael Conley                               Anna Maria, FL 34216-1418


                  Other State and Local Organizations
                         in the Continental U.S.
Aqua Venture Divers (SC)                    426 Coleman Blvd -
Mike Hegel                                  Mt. Pleasant, SC 29464

Aquatic Engineers of Georgia (GA)            38536 Lawrenceville Hwy.
Peter Vicars                                 Tucker, GA 30084

Aquatic Resource Center (IL)                 P.O. Box 414
Tim Early                                    Dolton, lL 60419

Atlanta Divers (GA)                          3853G Lawrenceville Hwy.
Peter Vicars                                 Tucker, GA 30084

Atlanta Oceans (GA)                                 P.O. Box 12198
Joe Jordan                                   Atlanta. GA 30355

Atlanta Scuba Club (GA)                      38536 Lawrenceville Hwy.
Peter Vicars                                 Tucker, GA 30084

Beneath the Sea (NY)                         10 Redfield St.
Rick D'Amico                                 Rye, NY 10580

Charbon Sports Club (GA)                     575 Hawthorne Ave.
W. Mack Martin                               Athens, GA 30606

Charlotte Divers (NC)                        601K S. Kings Dr.
James Seay                                   Charlotte, NC 28204

Clairemont Divers (NC)                       P.O. Box 877
Gene Monday                                  Clairemont, NC 28610
Dive South Scuba Club (GA)               836 South Main
Tom Larnbie                              Statesboro, GA 30458

Explorers Club of Pittsburgh (PA)        12985 Perry Highway
Sue Smiley                               Wexford, PA 15090

Gypsy Divers (NC)                        1019 E. Whitaker Mill Rd
Dave Farrar                              Raleigh, NC 27608

Hatteras Divers (NC)                     P.O. Box 213
Donny Lang                               Hatteras, NC 27943

Island Divers (GA)                       107 Marina Dr.
Judy Wright                              St. Simons Island, GA 31522

Island Hoppers Dive Club (NC)            2827 Spring Garden St.
Mary K. M. Nesbit                        Greensboro, NC 27403

Kitsap Diving Association (WA)           P.O. Box 1302
Donald L. Larson.                        Bremerton, WA 98310-0511

Lakewood Divers (AR)                     2925 Lakewood Village Dr.
Doug Lewter                              N. Little Rock,A 721 16 -
                                                         R           -


Little Rock Divers (AR)                  1222 Westpark
Mike McCrory                             Little Rock, AR 72204

Long Island Diver's Association (NY)     11 Potomac Ct.
Steven L. Puleo                          Coram, NY 11727

Maine Marine Explorers Scuba Club (ME)   784 Turner Rd.
Donald J. Bernard                        Auburn, ME 04210

Marietta Divers (GA)                     950 S. Cobb Parkway -- Ste 160
Mike Van Hosen                           Marietta, GA 30062

Memphis Divers (TN)                      999 S. Yates
Doug McNeese                             Memphis, TN 381 19

Mudhole Divers (MO)                      124 Merryfield Circle
Mary Bowles                              St. Charles, MO 63303-6540

Nag's Head Divers (NC)                   3941 S. Croatan Hwy.-- Ste 114
Ginny Nutter                             P.O. Box 665
                                         Nag's Head, NC 27959

New Dive Crew (NC)                       333 Jonestown Rd.
Bryan E. Holder                          Winston-Salem, NC 27104

Ocean Treasures (MI)                     1819 Fletcher St.
Gregory R. Mann                          Lansing, MI 48910
Oxford Divers (MS)
Doug Mc Neese                                    Oxford, MS

Sea Knights (CA)                                 6558 N. Callisch
Marlene Forbes                                   Fresno, CA 93710

Washington Scuba Alliance (WA)                   120 State Avenue
Donald L. Larson                                            A
                                                 Olympia, W 98501

Wet Set Divers (SC)                              5121 Rivers Ave.
Jack Williamson                                  Charleston, SC 29418


                        State   and Local Organizations
                                 U.S. Caribbean
Laurie Dunton                                   PO Box 588
Anchor Divers                                   St Croix, USVl 00823

Jose Rodriguez                                   PO Box 40893
Antilles Divers                                  San Juan, PR 00940

Bob Kreisel                                      6501 Red Hook Plaza #15
Aqua Action Divers                               St. Thomas, USVl 00802 ' -

Jose Rafols Sallaberry                           Rte 110, Km 10, Gate 5,
Aquatica Underwater Adventurers                  Aguadilla, PR 00604

Jose Guillermo Rodrigues                         Apdo 7186
Assoc De Estudiantes De Ecologia                 Ponce, PR 00732

Fernando Gomez Gomez                             PO Box 364424
Assoc Puertorriquena de Recursos de Agua         San Juan, PR 00905

Peter Zerzigon                                   Calle Colmei # 119, Apt 3b
Blue Water Scuba                                 San Turce, PR 00907

Mario Caruso                                     PO Box 902
Calypso Divers                                   Lajas, PR 00667

Bill Moore                                       HC-01, BOX4181
Captain Bill's Divers                            Rincon, PR 00677

Dave Fredebeugh                                  PO Box 93, Red Hook
Caribbean Divers                                 St Thomas, USVl 00801

Gene Thomas                                      P.O. Box 467
Caribbean Marine Services                        Culebra, PR 00775

Caribbean Research Institute                     Environmental Resource Center
Norman J. Quinn                                  University of the Virgin Islands
                                                 St. Thomas, USVl 00830
Michael Newell                                   La Concha Box 4195
Caribbean School of Aquatics                     San Juan, PR 00902

Karen Vega                                       P.O. Box 2470
Caribe Aquatic Adventurers                       San Juan, PR 00902

Jorge Pereira                                    HC-Box 13339 Bo Pajuil
C.E.D.D.A.                                       Hatillo, PR 00659

Fernando Rodriguez                               Calle Tulipan #BA-16,
Centro de Buceo                                  Carolina, PR 00983

Christie Swingen                                 4 -6-1 Frydenhoj
                                                  1
Chris Sawyer Divers                              St Thomas, USVl 00802

Peter Jackson                                    PO Box 5279
Coki Beach Dive Club                             St Thomas, USVl 00803

Ellezer Colon Rivera                             Apdo 123
Comite Despertar Cidreno                         Cidra, PR 00639

Comite Junqueno Pro Rescate del Medio Ambiente   P.O. Box 633
Edwin Hernandez                                  Juncos, PR 00777 -          -   -


Jose Bangochea Rodriguez                         Calle 9 #G-11
Comite Pro Buen Ambiente de Guayanilla           Guayanilla, PR 00858

Richard Metcalfe                                 10-1 Estate Carolina
                                                     9
Coral Bay Watersports Ass'n                      St John, USVl 00830

Jim Abbott                                       Box CUHF
Coral Head Divers                                Humacao, PR 00661

Serafin Labrador                                 PO Box 4194
Coral Reef Divers                                Puerto Real, PR 00740

Marcus Johnston                                  PO Box 252
Cruz Bay Watersports Ass'n                       St John, USVl 00830

Tom Long                                         12 Strand St/Frederiksted
Cruzan Divers                                    St Croix, USVl 00840

David Martinez                                   Lepanto #16, Alamein
Dive Company of Puerto Rico                      Rio Piedras, PR 00926

Sam Halverson                                    PO 4254 1 Christiansted
Dive Experience                                  St. Croix, USVl 00822

Jorge Pereira                                    HC-Box 13339 Bo Pajuil
Diving Adventurers                               Hatillo, PR 00659
Victor Torres                             Marginal Brasilla # C30
Fantasy Scuba Club                        Vega Baja, PR 00693

Myrna Pagan De Connely                    Calle Flamboyan 138
Fidecomiso de Conservation de Vieques     Vieques, PR 00765

Richard Scott                             PO Box 2 80
                                                  1
Hi-Tec Watersports Ass'n                  St Thomas, USVl 00803

Hans Peter                                PO Box 170
Humacao Divers                            Humacao, PR 00791

Jose Rafols                               P.O. Box 350
Liga Ecologica del Oeste                  Ramey, PR 00604

Cindy Gines Sanchez                       Apdo 503
Liga Ecologica de Rincon                  Rincon, PR 00743

Ann Marie Estes                           PO Box 431/ Cruz Bay
Low Key Watersports Ass'n                 St. John, USVl 00831

Jaime Brauleo                             PO Box 3660
Mayaguez Divers                           Mayaguez, PR 00708        -   -



Luis Torres                               Laguna Gardens Center
Mundo Submarino Divers                    lsla Verde, PR 00929

Susan M. Skewes                           Mongoose Junction
Mongoose Junction Merchants Ass'n.        St. John, USVl 00830

Ben Schwartz                              Vets Dr Stat, Box 3030
Ocean Fantasies                           St Thomas, USVl 00803

Leslie Cook                               Avenida lsla Verde #77
Ocean Sports                              lsla Verde, PR 00913

Edwin Hernandez Delgado                   PO Box 598
Org de Comunidades Ambientales del Este   Fajardo, PR 00738

Kurt Grossem                              Santa lsidra Ill, E6
Puerto Rico Divers                         Fajardo, PR 00738

Carlos Guzman                             Rd #1 A25 Villa Del Rey
Scuba Connection Divers                   Caguas, PR 00725

Felix Rivera                              Box 4 78
                                               1
Sea Venture Divers                        Puerto Real, PR 00740

Hector Quintero                           InterAm Univ Box 5100
Sociedad de Historia Natural              San German, PR 00753
Kurt Serik                                   59 Kings WharfICrstetd
St. Croix Diving Ass'n                       St. Croix, USVI 00820

David Skewes                                 PO Box 70 / Cruz Bay
St. John Watersports Ass'n                   St. John, USVl00830

William G Letts                              7147 Bolongo Bay
St Thomas Diving Ass'n                       St. Thomas, USVI 00802

Jose Garcia                                  6300 Estate Frydenhoj
St Thomas Yacht Ass'n                         St Thomas, USVI 00802


                     State and Local Organizations
                        Hawaii & Western Pacific
Atla Pac Weighmasters Tournament         3352 Ala Akulikuli St.
Roland Galacgag, Sr.                     Honolulu, HI 96818

Molokai Visitor's Association                P.O. Box 960
Barbara Schonely                             Kaunakakai, HI 96748

Outrigger Canoe Club                         2909 Kalakaua Ave.
Raymond Ludwig                               Honolulu, HI 96815 -     *   -


Pride Charters Association                   208 Kenolio Rd.
Antoinette M. Davis                          Kihei, HI 96753

Sierra Club Maui Conservation Committee      SR Box 190
Lisa Hamilton                                Hana, HI 96713

The Ocean Recreation Council of Hawaii       P.O. Box 5306
Terry Lischer                                Kailua-Kona, HI 96745
                                                                                                          NO

                  A hvate Non-Profir Conrenxltron Organrtanm deduced to
                 "Preserve and h t e a the Lavmng Coral Reef of the FLada Kqvs"
~ecember17, 1993
                                                                                  GULF FISI-lEHd-'.
Terrance R. Leary
Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council
5401 West Kennedy Blvd., Lincoln Center, Suite 331
Tampa, Florida 33609-2486
Re:   Draft Amendment 2 to the Fishery Management Plan for                                        Coral
      Reefs of the Gulf of Mexico and South Atlantic
Dear Mr. Leary:
The Board of Directo1.s of REEF RELIEF supports alternative C.2.
Prohibit Harvest of Live Rock. Live rock is part of the living
coral reef. Harvesting coral is illegal in Florida and should
not be condoned by the state of Florida or the Federal
government. We therefore urge the banning of all live rock
collection in Federal waters.
                                                                                                  -   -

Jennifer L. Wheaton, in her study entitled "The ~arine-Life
Fishery for 'Live Rock': Biological and Ecological Assessment of
the Product and ~mplementations for Harvest" (April 1989),
reports that "The most obvious implication of live rock harvest
is outright loss of habitat, biomass and associated production.
Unlike removal of individual specimen, live rock collection
entails loss of actual micro-comm~nities.~
We normally encourage aquaculture as an option to avoid economic
displacement. However, we do not support the aquaculture option
in this case as a tradeoff for allowing continued harvest of live
rock. The aquaculture proposed has not been proven to produce
quality live rock nor quantities of live rock adequate to replace
the habitats that would be harvested.
Thank you for the opportunity to comment on the Draft Amendment 2
to the Fishery Management Plan for Coral and Coral Reefs of the
Gulf of Mexico and South Atlantic. REEF RELIEF is a local,
action-oriented conservation organization dedicated to
"Preserving and Protecting the Living Coral Reef of the Florida
Keys". We do not believe that complete removal of a limited,
otherwise stressed con~ponentof an internationally recognized

 a
> &
marine resource can be justified in conservation ethics.


Michelle Rice, Project Assistant




                iYaihg .Address: Post OfficeBox 430, Key Wat, Florida 33041
                      Education Center:201 WilliamStreet, Key West, Florida 33040
         En~lironmental
                    Telephone: (305)294-3100 / FAX: (305)293-9515
                                   Printed on Recycled Paper
                                                                              Mr, &Mrs. Larry Jackson
                                                                                         S. Jackson
                                                                               San A-.       TX 7 ~ i q n l



December 20, 1993
Terrance L e a r y
G u l f o f Mexico F i s h e r y Management C o u n c i l
L i n c o l n C e n t e r , S u i t e 331
5401 West Kennedy B l v d .
Tampa, F l o r i d a 33609
Dear M r . L e a r y ;
 I a w r i t i n g you t o encourage you t o speed t h e p r o c e s s by w h i c h
      m
p e r m i t s w i l l be g r a n t e d f o r t h e c u l t u r i n g o f l i v e r o c k m a t e r i a l .
As a d i v e r and a q u a r i s t , I a p p r e c i a t e t h e underwater environment as
much o r more t h a n most. I keep a p i e c e o f t h i s environment i n my
home aquar lums .                      My purchases o f l i v e r o c k m a t e r i a l s have
c o n t r i b u t e d t o t h e economy o f F l o r i d a . L i v e r o c k i s c o l l e c t e d by
d i v e r s , c a r e d f o r by employees o f many s m a l l companies, shipped by
d e l i v e r y companies, handled by a i r l i n e employees and f l o w n by
a i r c r a f t . I believe t h a t i t ' s continued a v a i l a b i l i t y i s impprtant
t o y o u r s t a t e s economy as w e l l as t h e hobby o f m a r i n e aquarium
keeping.             I do n o t w i s h t o see t h e e n v i r o n m e n t h u r t b y i m p r o p e r
c o l l e c t i n g t e c h n i q u e s o r o v e r - c o l l e c t i n g s i n c e I spend many o f my
v a c a t i o n o p p o r t u n i t i e s scuba d i v i n g . I b e l i e v e t h a t t h e c u l t u r i n g
o f l i v e r o c k o f f e r s t h e b e s t s o l u t i o n f o r a q u a r i s t s and
e n v i r o n m e n t a l c o n c e r n s . The c u l t u r i n g o f l i v e r o c k w i l l p r o b a b l y
c r e a t e a f e w e x t r a j o b s f o r t h e economy s i n c e t h e r a w m a t e r i a l s
w i l l have t o be g a t h e r e d , p r e p a r e d and p l a c e d i n t h e a q u a t i c
environment.                L i v e r o c k w i l l be a v a i l a b l e a t some c o s t from some
source. I f permits a r e not granted i n a t i m e l y f a s h i o n t o i n s u r e
c o n t i n u a t i o n o f t h e businesses t h a t a r e c u r r e n t l y i n t h e l i v e r o c k
t r a d e , jobs and revenue w i l l be l o s t t o F l o r i d a . A q u a c u l t u r e of
l i v e r o c k w i l l c r e a t e bottom h a b i t a t f o r d i v e r s e l i f e forms w h i l e
p r o v i d i n g j o b s and a d e s i r a b l e p r o d u c t . I r e a l i z e t h a t t h e i s s u e
i s i m p o r t a n t e n v i r o n m e n t a l l y ; b u t s t e p s have a l r e a d y been t a k e n t o
eliminate              h a r v e s t i n g of        w i l d l i v e rock without             adequate
c o n s i d e r a t i o n t o t h e a l t e r n a t i v e means o f p r o d u c t i o n , hence t h e
p o t e n t i a l i n t e r r u p t i o n of s u p p l y and l o s s o f jobs, revenue and
p r o d u c t . P l e a s e do what you can t o speed t h e p r o c e s s .
Thank You,
    7-;              r

Larry    Jac
Aquarist
     12/28/1993 17:12           7035384568                    CLIFF P~ICCREED'V'                       PAGE     22




                                                 December 27, 1993
                   Gulf of Mexico Fishery
                    Management Council
                   5401 W. Kennedy Blvd. #33 1
                            L
                   Tampa, F 33609
      I
 (ljffmc(,@dy       er
                   D a Council Members:

                   I wish to express my support for a total and immediate ban on live rock collection in
6204 N.    Smn     fisheries under your jurisdiction. Please consider this letter during the hearings to be
      vA
Min@onl 22205      held in January on this matter.
Ph.:703.538.4568
      I            As  a scuba diver, I support preserving coral reefs to the maximum extent possible.
                   Coral reefs provide the richest habitat anywhere in the marine environment. Apart horn
                   their stunning natural beauty and vibrant displays of marine life, reefs offer high
                   biological value, species diversity, and productivity. Many important species rely on
                   reefs for habitat and food, including fisheries of great economic importance to the
                   United States. Unfortunately, coral reefs are suffering from the effects of pollution,
                   overdevelopment of coastal areas, and overfishing.                                 --
                   Of all the available uses for this resource, wild coral coIlection is the most destructive
                   and unsustainable. At any level or rate, coral harvesting damages the resource. Coral
                   organisms take decades to produce live rock and hundreds of years to create reefs, and
                   it takes too long for the reefs to recover from damage. The taking of corals also
                   weakens the remaining coral organisms and makes them more susceptible to disease.
                   Moreover, the damage causes a ripple effect on other species that rely on the reef for
                   habitat. In the end, live rock and coral harvesting is like committing environmental
                   genocide. It pulls the rug out f o under thousands of species and attacks the health of
                                                     rm
                   the ecosystem. The minimal economic value of harvesting coral is cancelled ten times
                   over by the damage done to the resource itself.

                   I ask the Council to take a stand against this harmful practice. Plew ban coral and live
                   rock collection, not in three years, but immediately. I implore you to weigh the long-
                   term consequences for our natural resources and to forgo any short-term economic gain.

                   Thank you for your consideration of my concerns.
                   Sincerely,



                   Cliff McCreedy

                   CC;    Representative Jim Moran      Senator Charles Robb
                          Senator John Warner           Project ReefKeepe'
r..-                                                                              +   -   .-
     :: t !
? i 1'        .'!
              !,
              4     (31i-i
                       .     1 b:.   [ i] [ !-\ fi k:
                                              4      t i c l [ I-\r~1
                                                         ,
                                                        :>'     .a !:j
                                                              I( I j
                                                               :          I-.! 1 '5 'f.-! ::; i > .. +
                                                                       f Q r 3t
                                                                            +     g
                                                                                  .   I   1 1   f
                                                                                                i:
                                                                                                 ,!   i.1)        ''




l*f;]f:k."   li)            f'~-~?r)r\?r1 I-)
                    -3 K)i-i:!f?55!(]frdl        p35t                           ,311
                                                                   +rvij~-;!-+,,j F ; ,r:-!;        ,;,f ,;!
 1              , 1      I t ! s a ()lie !:har~fle t~ rrdve a f31rlV i!?-!pdrt:.al;-i!-?f'
~:c?r?c?r'l?lr~~fe Cock." rnanaclement. However. i t ~ 3 ~5 i t.,.:) see t1-1~
                 I!v     "                                             a f                        :;,t.3tcl
o f F!oriila',s dt-l~mm?d state~nents
                         up                   were used aaairr 5.ut:h 35 - t r,e                                 i:;~.;,

Derwnt. !sf 1 lve rock. examlned at the request o f ~nfon:enient. aclentc,
                                 of
SOnt3lneil \/lslble ci~lorrles prohibi t.ed coral." The tr-utrr 1 5t.t73[ t.rle
detalnecl r K k whlch was a few pleces out of hundreds o f po~~nfls                         r:r)nt.31nel:l
(:Oral. How the State came up w l t h 90 percent 1s s t i l l a mvs[er.v "TI.'!'. . -          - ?           .


estimated amount of 3 tons of' live rock leavlnq thru rqlarnl d a i l y . " .=,tatell
bv the Florida marine Patrol i s completelv out of line; orders are wolghed
toqether. bv alr carqo. Therefore this statement of estimated am!:~~~nt:s                                3r.e
untrue Bott-r of these statements as w e l l as manv other5 a r e rrl!sieac3int:!
'and cloud the entlre r9ck issue.

                 there are rf~ajor-
A 5 (:rjl!e!::T;!fc,                 differences between t . 0 ~       wec_;t;3i!cj t h e E:3:frt
i;oast. rnarirle 11fe. 'Ne feel ~t i s verv Important to cr!n[inue t.0 have
different rei~ulatlfig    councils! Separate views allow t o r area ~ e i ~ ! j i ~ [ ~ ! j i ~
lIev?lr?pr~ient that w i l l provide a f a i r rnanaqemrnt f - 1 ~ 1t ~o protect, ~ T T - 1 3 1
                                                                                            I
UuSIneSs and the environment alike. TO combine this tvpe or cjecisiorl
                          q
would be llke ( ~ l v i n your monev t u a gambler and askirr(3 them ti, ! r ! v e ~ tl t
for vour future

R e d e f l n ~ t ~ o n Allowable Octocorals needs to have dlmenslons ~f
                    of
-3ubstrate holdfast, such as not to exceed 2 inches. Depenrlln~      or1
                                                                    k
eollectlon areas some Octocorals can be collected w i t h l i t t ~ to no
'5ubstrate. while other areas need t o allow a small amount o f subc;trat.e
 to achieve the harvest of a heal thier product.

First. consideration for manaqement of "live rock" should be the
~mplementation f limited access This should carry over t o an"
                 o
aquaculture slte i n State or Federal waters. This would allow f o r a
control!ed amount of collectors u n t ~ the rules tak:e effect.
                                        l
-   i   I-: + ; I .; 7. ( - , ., r-i ;-1 , r-i r-
           , -
                .
               -.   -.,      . -. -
                                 . - ,    I
                                         - r
                                                        ,            -
                                                                         f   - r- --... J, , t- r- r i-. -.- t- i-i .2 i
                                                                                            -r        :
                                                                                                          .- -
                                                                                                               i   - 1     .-
                                                                                                                           I ;   -     .-         .
                                                                                                                                 .:4r . ,- !-.,j-; t i . . i-, i -.
                                                                                                                                           .- . . . , l-i. .1 .-
                                                                                                                                                               ;        -,
                                                                                                                                                                        -
                                                                                                                                                                        -.-
                                                                                                                                                                      i-:   .,   ,. & :.
                                                                                                                                                                                    .- -
                                                                                                                                                                                             : . :.
                                                                                                                                                                                                 .
!
:
.         1 1 VI ! t                   !1              3nr'l t ():       pr-.!:b      I ae 1 1 v+ rY(~i: k, t' sr~er-fll
                                                                                                           1              !!-I?rr-!e;31]5 ti:, (1(:[-I; ~.r - . . (11
                                                                                                                                                                :

I                                          !               Sa~rand
                                                     T ~ I ! s . j r ~e.!amp!e
                                                             1.3                                 of   i
                                                                                                      ;              irnocjr-tlal v i e w ot tr,? - 1 i"t+
Y-.     ;
        i, k:. *.         T1   -
                       I t $ 3 5 a :i;r)ar~le rE;3iJ [/7? 5 ~ 1 r ~ A h l ~ r ~ ~ [ ; i ~ :~' ~ f ~ f - ~ ~
                               ,-.y, p
                                -      -         [c
                                               ,y:                      . t [        l ~      ~                                                                                                       - . ~ i j
-:q?rl(:lrlS Or-I i 2 3 . And ~ rO ) 1 .
                  :                               O p t ~ m ~ j Yield (OY j should tje nc:, 1 ess
                                                                rn
                       r
(:!utIined l ~ n d e D 2. which 1s ~ 0 m p a t l b I e ~ t h  w      Alternative C..2b Gprl!;r!
!
C 1 , w ! l l r e s u l t i n a s i q n ~ f l c a n economic Impact on a substantla; nurr-it~er
                                                    t
~f ~ t n d l DuSifieS e n t i t i e s . East coast c o l l e c t o r s sald thev would not t e
               l
[]lven a chance to stav I n buslness and now the 5.A. mav prove them
(:or-rect

.is                                    +!t
             3 S!'r-i:3) 1 ci~Slr'ie.f;S                                       l[ij     ?.'W!-jO'Sly!Caflle IS     aased     fin [ h e ,)!:I! Ie(1.t l2r-1 ~:!t 1 i , . , ; ~
r-r!cC.           the W e s t f : : ~ a ~ ; t , i s very ~ m p o r t a n t o W O I ' ~ w i [Q [ h e (:(~I-J?(:I is
                fr-l:rr.r!                it
SO that pr'ovlSlOnS are (]ranted t o harvest w I I d rock. u n t i 1 aquar!.~l                       tl-~r-.?  C3I-I
t7e Ohtair7ed E.k:emption f o r the removal of c o r a l that w i 1 l attact-1 [Re
i q u a i u 1 tur-.e pr-oduct must be provided, such as the exemption used In the -                              -
I
!       t fshoro yetro!eurn e x t r a c t iorl.

P e r v ! tt!rt!J w 1 ! ! r-oyl~!re t lonal paperwork and fundlny f o r tt7e
                                  addl
requ 1 at i n q aqency personnel. Because of the paperwork; reduct iorr a c t .3!7(7
                 .                 d




the f a c t that funds are close t o non-existent, how do w e over rorne t h ~ s
grob l ern 7

C 4 . 4 One opt ion !s t o have one p e r m i t under 1 imi ted access management
 I f a person does n o t a t t e m p t t o obtain a aquaculture perm1t before closur-e
(3f w i l d harvest, then they f o r f e i t t h e i r place on the l i m i t e d access l l s t
which ~ 1 1 then l i m i t harvest t o persons w i t h authorized aquaculture
                   1
operations. Additionally, c o l l e c t o r s should continue t o h o l d a c u r r e n t
S a l t w a t e r product license(SPL) w i t h the ML(Marine L i f e ? and
RS(Restr1cted Species) endorsements and be reauired t o report &                                      l
catches f r o m s t a t e and federal w a t e r s by u s i n g the i d e n t i f y i n g area code
number i A r e a code IS already p o s s i b l e , w i t h t h e t r i p t i c k e t r e p o r t i n g )
'Separate information could then be compiled by the t r i p t ~ c k e aqencv                t
i.lt'lt I 1 closure period IS i n e f f e c t or continue t h e report l n q r-equirer'i~er!ts ,3c~
more i n f o r m a t i o n can be gathered on marine l i f e and t h e i r c o l l r c t ! n ~ ~
3reas

         J                                               copy, whi!e In possessi(?ts i:!f
             0 P ~ ? S ? ? S S !of ~3~ n c i t a r ~ z e d
                                Q                                                                                                                                  - -         i
                                                                                                                                                                 t ~ ~ ( - ,. lT       I ~ th?
au tt~or-ized  ayuac.ul t u r e operat!on along w It h current 1 i m i teQ a(:(:esr
pernll t , V L , ML and RS endorsements should separate aquacult~.~ralt ?           is
from i 1 legal harvesters. The l i m i t e d access permit could include and
specify the a1 lowance of prohibited coral on aquacul tured 1 ive rock.

C.4.c. I'm not sure how to overcome t h i s additional perm lt unless ~t can be
worded t o include " 1 ive rock" to the current permitting system for.
scientific, educational, and restorat ion purposes.

Concerning the 1 ive rock fishery value of about $628,000.00-this f iqure
seems t o be incorrect. We are currently gather1ng information f r o m rock
collectors t o provide a more accurate value figure. We hope to have t h i s
information for you by the f i r s t meeting's date.

To completely close the l l v e rock industry as the SA prefers w i l l
adversely affect practically a l l participants: loss of revenue, increase in
operating cost, loss of employment, and less competttlve f o r the domestic
industry I n the International market. We have l o s t so many jobs and      --
income t o other countries i n the past and now NAFTA. Don't allow the
additional pressure of a complete 1 ive rock closure. IT WOULD BE WRONG!
To regulate live rock harvest w i t h the allowance of aquaculture w i l l not
create overlapping regulatlons w i t h state or other federal laws.

A r t i f i c i a l reefs have proven t o be very effective by providing surface for
the growth of marine l l f e and habitat f o r troplcal fishes and inverts.
Base rocks of a r t i f i c i a l reefs w l l l quickly become attached to each other
by the bui l d up of calcium carbonate. B l l l y Causey has proven t h i s t o be
true by presenting slides t o council members o f rubble rock created by a
boat grounding. He attested t o the adherence o f the rubble rock.
Mitigation has been u t i l i z e d and successful i n many ways, such as wet
lands and the replacement o f hard bottom removed by beach renourishment
or dredging. There i s no reason why the above mentioned could not be
applied towards "1 ive rock"?

Don't add t o the current economic impacts that face small business
entitles dally by closlng rock harvest completely. Many businesses w l l l be
affected, not just the collectors. The health o f marine l l f e and marlne fish
depend heavily on the presence of l l v e rock i n an aquarium.

I f I can be of further assistance, please contact me.

Most sincerely,      I       /7
                            -
                  ~ ' d ? 5 LqpL
KENT   MQRINE                                                     J a n 06,94        12:07 N s . Z C 1 ?.::
                                                                                                             -




                January 6,1994
                                                                                      REcBVED
                                                                                      ,!.ri y 0 6 1994
                                                                                   GULF FISHERIES COUNCIL
                Mr. Terry Leary
                The Gulf of Mexlco Fishery Management Councll
                Llncoln Center, Suite 331
                5401 West Kennedy Blvd.
                Tampa, FL 33600


                Dear Mr. Leary:
                Kent Marine Is a manufacturer of water filtration equlpment and chemical supplements for
                aquarium use.
                We are aware that you are taking public comments on the Issue of THE COLLECTION OF
                Li-VE ROCK In federal waters.

                We would llke to state our S u ~ ~ o r tthe wntlnued collection of Live Rock. If properly
                                                   for
                managed, Llve Rock collecting would be no more damaging to the ebvlronment than
                sport flshlng, boating or other activities that the government manages. It Is much
                much less damaging than sewage fmm cities, large shlpplng, oil drilling end many other
                activities.
                Marine aquariums promote public understanding of the fragile nature of marlne Ilfe. Many
                are in schools, restaurants and other public places.

                Unfortunately, our industry Is not e large one, and It is difficult for us to defend ourselves
                against the ravings and radical and often dishonest methods of envlronmentallsts. We do
                however employ a number of people, and Indeed the pet shops of this cauntry have w m e to
                depend on live rock collected in U.S. waters. We also would llke to see a sustainable yleld
                of live rock, and some controls are In order.

                As our economy tries to come out of recession, President Cllnton has sald that he Is
                dependant on Small Business to provlde the jobs to build a strong economy. Small Buslness
                Is already pushed to the maximum wlth environmental and safety laws, new upcoming taxes
                for healthcare etc. You are asking us to save our economy, couldn't the federal government
                try to cooperato somewhere?

                Please manage the collectlng of live rock but do not outlaw It!
                                                                                                             <    -A,


                Slncereiy,                                                                        .   :+-!   ,h   -+



                Owner
RQUQRIUM PRODUCTS                              TEL N o . 4 1 0 - 7 6 1 - 6 4 5 8              Jan          7,94 1 0 : 4 1 N c . O G 5 " . 2 ;
                                                                                                                          _-

                                                                    TAB              8 ~~.s/q)
                                               AQUARIUM PRODUCTS
     &p .:
       .  .,
         r -; . :
            :- 0       <\                         180-LPENROD COURT
               .A
               S . '
                    .
                    .-.
                       .
                       :    ,    r:>
                                ..
                                r-     J
                                           .
                                           .
                                                GLEN BURNIE, MD 21061
                                                                   (410) 761-2100
                                                                   January 7,1994

          The Gulf of
          Lincoln Center, Suite 331
          5401 West Kennedy Blvd.                                                         .
                                                                                          ;

          Tampa, FL 33609                                                                i j $
                                                                                            ,
                                                                                                  .%
                                                                                                    #-,,

                                                                                                ii."s:
                                                                                                     &
                                                                                                           .

                                                                                                               i\i
          Attn: Mr. Terry Leafy
                                                                      Re: Collection of "live rock''

          Members of the Council:
                                                                                                                              -   -

         I have just entered into my 50th year in the'aquarium business; and, in all this
         time, I haven't seen such a significantly tiny segment of the harvesting from
         natural resources to be blown entirely out of proportion and given so much
         attention!!

         In one storm, I have watched more "live rock" thrown up on one beach by waves
         than the aquarium industry would use by the year 2020!! So, depriving 35
         collectors their well earned livelihood, the livelihood of the dealers to whom they
         ship and the rest of the businesses that earn a living from this "rock" would really
         only hurt the very economy that needs bolstering. This would just send another
         business to our overseas competitors.

         Nothing is lost even to the misinformed ecologists, as these same individuals
         that collect are even willing to put rock back into the ocean as a form of
         aquaculture if the State of Florida would make it easier!

         As a pioneer in this hobby and industry, I appeal to the "common sense" of the
         members of the Council. Look to the positive effect of allowing the collection of
         this necessary "living rock":

                 1. It teaches ecology, marine science, the beauty and fascination of
          nature and utilizes what is wasted in natural storms.

                            2. It helps the economy and the taxes that come into the effected states.

                            3. Through aquaculture, it could even develop further.
          ~ UU I I
H U ~ H K ~ K~ ~ U L 2         ILL   N O . 4IU-(01-0430




             Please look at this situation in an unbiased, sensible light and you will see that
             there is really no harm being done! The collection and growing of "living rock"
             will be an advantage to the States involved. It's not like mining or pumping oil --
             nothing will be harmed and many will be helped.

             Keep the United States strong by not destroying the initiatives of the few who are
             trying to do something right!! Small businesses helped "build this nation"!

             Sincerely,

            AQUARIUM PRODUCTS



            Merrill Cohen, President
            (Former Mayor of Baltimore's Committee member for the founding of the              -
            National Aquarium in Baltimore; farmer first board member of the National
            Aquarium in Baltimore; member of former U. S. Senator "Mac" Mathias
            committee on the Environment and preserving the Chesapeake Bay.)
                      9n~)A,           L
                                      J .
                                        u                                  TAR     B                fig   *--&-




                                                                     =      &--Q
     IT MAY HAVE COME AS A BIG SURPRISE TO MANY OF YOU WHEN T P % ~ $ A / ~ $ @ ~ ~ ~
     PATROL ARRESTED 4 DIVERS I N WALTON COUNTY ON NOVEMBER 9TH FOR HARVES
     "LIVE ROCK", BUT DID YOU KNOW THATTHIS KIND OF "HARVESTING" OCCURS DAILY. I N
'4
     FACT, WITH A PERMIT, IT'S LEGAL I N FEDERAL WATERS. THE PROBLEM IS THAT MOST OF
     OUR NATURAL REEFS ARE I N FEDERAL WATERS AND THESE PERMITS ALLOW THE
     UNSCRUPULOUS DIVER TO TAKE THOUSANDS OF POUNDS OF THlS PRECIOUS ROCK AT A
     TIME!! ANY INTELLIGENT PERSON CAN REASON THAT I F THlS KIND OF STRIP MINING IS
     ALLOWED TO CONTINUE THERE WON'T BE ANYTHING LEFT. DESTINNS ENTIRE C O M M U N I N
     DEPEND UPON OUR REEF SYSTEM. WITHOUT IT WE MIGHT AS HELL CLOSE DOWN EVERY
     COMMERCIAL CHARTER BOAT, THE FISHING RODEO, THE SEAFOOD INDUSTRY, EVERY DIVE
     SHOP, REAL ESTATE OFFICES, AND MOST ALL TOURIST ORIENTED INDUSTRY. LETS FACE
     IT, DESTIN WILL N O LONGER BE THE "WORLDS LUCKIEST FISHING VILLIAGE" ANYMORE.

     WHAT CAN 1 DO? YOU CAN START BY SIGNING THlS PETITION WHICH W l l L BE SENT TO
     THE FEDERAL DEPT OF NATURAL RESOURCES, THE ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION
     AGENCY, CONGRESSMAN EARL HUTTO, AS WELL AS ALL OTHER PERTINENT AGENCIES.
     THlS IS BE A BIG STEP I N STARTING LEGISLATION THAT W l l L PROTECT OUR REEFS I N
     FEDERAL WATERS.

     I SUPPORT LEGISLATION THAT WILL MAKE THE TAKING OF LIVE ROCK I N FEDERAL WATERS
     ILLEGAL.
                                        ADDRESS                                      PHONE NUMBER
                                 803 &--/   /Lr.   B       L I-     F w/c          SL3 - xi..&
                                                                                            .   s




                            23 ? A R r ~?rb            ,    &A    ~tmflR   FL       b51-4834
Dear Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council:

The Destin Charter Boat Association, representing more than 90 members of the Destin
fishing community, vigorously opposes the taking or harvesting of marine live rock and coral.
We are aware that our reefs are being destroyed at an alarming rate. They are taken up by the
tons from the Gulf floor and are sold to aquarium suppliers throughout the world.

Living rock, in its natural habitat, supports an ecosystem which took eons to evolve. The reefs
are literally the life support system for gulf marine wildlife and entire communities whose
livings depend on fishing and marine recreation. The livelihoods of these communities is
being sacrificed to appease aquarium hobbyists.
                                                                                                    -
Destin is blessed with many natural limestone reefs lying only miles from our home port.
Although in years past we have attempted to supplement our natural resources by building
artificial reefs, w< believe it i s the natural bottom that ultimately produces the fish that are
then attracted to our artificial structures. However, at present, Destin is labeled a "closed
harbor" which prohibits the departure of new artificial reef material. In other words, w'e a r e
forbidden from building artificial reefs. We must rely solely on the reefs & wrecks that are
already established. Therefore, it is vital that we protect this valuable, necessary natural
resource.

The reefs of Destin are composed of limestone, When this live rock is pulled from the waters,
it is gone forever. As the reefs disappear, the wildlife they are so vital to disappears along
with the fishing, recreational, and tourist industries which are the basis of making a living for
so many people in the Destin community.

If the reefs are left in their natural habitat, they are a source of livelihood and enjoyment for
everyone indefinitely. Stripmining these reefs sacrifices the balance of nature & the long
term needs of many just to benefit a few shortsighted harvesters & their customers.

The Destin Charter Boat Association supports banning harvesting o r taking the live rock
which composes our reef system.


Sincerely,



Tommy Klosterman
President - DCBA
                                                                                                          ---   .--.   "

                               CURTIS R. KRUER
                         Consulting and Research Biologist
                                    p.0. Box 420334
                              Summerland Key,FL 33042-0334
                                      (305) 745-1699
                                   FAX (305) 745-8848



Mr. Terrance Leary                                                        ,   .-   I   .:<   0   1';C't
Gulf of ~ e x i c oFishery Management Council
Lincoln Center, Suite 331                                                                  c.-.i.,-ii:L
                                                                              c,r;!,2r,~,z;-,.:
5401 W. Kennedy Blvd.
Tampa, F1 33609
                                                                      January 5, 1994
Re: Live rock harvesting in federal waters
Dear Mr. Leary:
     I 've reviewed Draft Coral Amendment #2 regarding proposed live
rock management in the Gulf and South Atlantic. I recommend that
the Gulf and South Atlantic Councils implement a quick -phase-out
of all commercial live rock harvesting in federal waters. I believe
rock aquaculture on public lands may be a can of worms to implement
and a waste of valuable time for resource agencies.
     My experience in the commercial aspect of the marine life
industry several years ago in Florida (C & C Marine Life, ~upiter,
F1) taught me that most live rock harvested and sold ended up
tossed into a back yard or flower bed in a relatively short t h e .
It was a minor part of the marine life collecting business in South
Florida 15-20 years ago.
     It may be that marine life harvesters have depleted many of
the valuable, easy to collect species in recent years and have now
turned to an "inexhaustiblew supply of live rock. These are non-
renewable public resources important to the diversity and abundance
of marine life we value and enjoy. Please see that they are
protected from harvest         .
     Thank you for your consideration of my comments.
Sincerely,



Curtis Kruer            -,   ,P=%




               Conservation Biology - Aquatic, Wetland and Terrestrial Habitats
                                                            h   J   ' s   P E T P>.LA!:E
                                                        2 1 4 0 W. BUSCH BLVD.
                                                      TAMPA. F L O R I D A 33612




s : ; ; n i ~ z r y9 , 1 4 9 4


T o Whom I t          Mas        Co              ern;,
                                                  c,   i$   4
                                      ..   9.   -\$
                                                                          Re: Amendment o t t h n C o r a l Ynnagcment
                            Y \iw
                            s p * 3                                             Plan



       A s a P e t S h o p o w n e r f o r t h e p a s t t e n y e a r s i n t h e Bay a r e a ,
I c a n n o t b e g i q t o e x n r e s s my c o n c e r n o v e r t h e p ~ s s i b i l i t yo f a
bar, o n l i v e r o c k .

          Wtien e s t a b l i s h i n g a s a l t w a t e r a q u a r i a , b a s e r o c k i s t h e ~ a e a l .        -
media t o u s e .         Not o n l y d o e s i t a c t . a s a f i l t e r , h u t bec.?use o f
t h e p o r o u s t e x t u r e o f t h e r o c k i t e s t a b l i s h e s t h e p c r f s c t bed t o
g r o w g o o d b a c t e r i a , w h i c h i s e s s e n t i a l f o r c y c l i n g -3 s a l t w a t e r
tank.       A f t e r a week y o u s t a r t a d d i n g l i v e r o c k a n d y c u r t a n k
s h u u l d be c y c l e d w i t h i n 2 - 3 w e e k s .         A t t h i s pC~inb,when yau s t a r t
~clclirig f i s h , t h e l i v e r o c k s t a r t s t o p l a y a n e v e n b i . g g e r role-,
s i n c e many r e e . f c r e a t u r e s d e p e n d o n t h e l i v e r o c k ' f c r t h e i r e x i . s t a n c e .

          Most p e t s h o p p e r s o n n e l t h a t d e a l i n s a l t w a t e r f i s h a n d o u r
c u s t o m e r s a s w e l l , a l l work t o w a r d s t h e o p t i m u m n a t u r a l e n v i r o n m e n t
lor o u r r e e f a q u a r i a .       I f you t a k e away t h e l i v e rock from s a l t
w a t e r a q u a r i a t h e r e s u l t s w i l l be d i s a s t e r o u s . The t w o go h a n d i n
hand.

          I have t a l k e d w i t h a few hands on c o l l e c t o r s vver t h e y e a r s
a n d a l l o f t h e m s e e m t o f o l l o w t h e same g u i d e l i n e s .      Most r o c k
c o l l e c t i n g d i v e s a r e d o n e 10 m i l e s o r more f r o m t h e s h o r e l i n e a n d
i n 40 - 60 f e e t o f watgr i n n u m e r o u s l o c a t i o n s .           How c a n you h o n e s t l y
s3y t h a t t h e h a r v e s t i n g of l i v e rock i s r u i n i n g t h e m a r i n e ecologj-7
The e a r t h i s c o v e r e d b y 2 1 3 water a n d t h e s m a l l a m o u n t o f r o c k t h a t
i s c o l l e c t e d f o r t h e p e t i n d u s t r y c o u l d h a r d l y make a d e n t I n t h e
v a s t amount o f r o c k t h a t i s . a v a i l a b l e .

          A s a b u s i n e s s o w n e r I know t h a t i f t h i s a m e n d m e n t i s p a s s e d ,
I w i l l s t a n d t o l o s e 50% o f my b u s i n e s s .            e
                                                                      W cannot. let t h i s h a p p e n !
T h i s w i l l n o t o n l y e f f e c t myself but t h e m i l l i o n s of o t h e r pecple
a l l o v e r t h e c o u n t r y from n a n u f a c t u r e r s , w h o l e s a l e r s , r e t a i l e r s ,
c o l l e c t o r s , h o b b y i s t s e t c . who w i l l b e a f f e c t e d by t.h? p a s s a g e o f
          a
t h ~ s mendment.

           Z s t r o n g l y s u g g e s t t h a t y o u r e s e a r c h t h i s amendment more
c a r e f u l l y a n d s t a : - t g e ~ t i n gt!le o p i n i o r l s o f more q u a . l % Z i ( - \ d p e o p i ?
sl.:ch a s m a r i n e b i o i o : ; % s t s a n d h a r v e s t e r s a n d s t o p ! . i . a r e n i n , q t o t h e
P r ; v i r o n m e n t a l . i s t s who n a v e 1 i t t l . e o r n o k n o w l e d g e o n C,lj.s L s s u e .

T l ~ a n k You.


                     \
B e v e r l y J . ? e " k t s , Owner
H J ' s Pet Palace
The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council
Lincoln Center, Suite 331 5401 West Kennedv Blvd.
Tampa, FL 33609
Attn: Terry Leary

Dear Terry,
I am writing this letter to protest the restrictions being considered on the
harvesting of live rock. I have been involved in the marine hobby for only five
years. In that short period of time, I have learned a great deal about the biology
of marine organisms and the ecology of marine environments. My knowledge
was gleaned simply as a matter of maintaining a marine aquarium and reading
associated literature. As a marine aquarium hobbyist, I was disappointed to
learn of the banning of live rock collection in State waters. Now, with the advent
of further restrictions, I am compelled to voice my strong opposition.
As you may know, live rock is used in types of marine aquaria referred to as
"reef tanks." According to surveys in the hobbyist literature there are
approximately 200,000-250,000 reef tanks worldwide. Relative to other-         --
pastimes such as scuba diving, we are a small lot indeed. We are also not very
organized and, consequently, are unable to defend ourselves against those
who criticize us. I hope to give you more information in order to allow you to
make a decision based on fact instead of one based on the emotional
statements of others.
 I would like to begin by stating that live rock is a renewable natural resource.
 Live rock is essentially the dead skeletons of reef-building corals "cemented"
together by means of calcareous algae where it becomes a substrate for new
coral growth and a home for a variety of marine fauna. Often, the skeletons fall
to the bottom of the reef where again they become live rock and act as shelter
for various marine fauna. Here, because of sediment and lack of light, coral
growth cannot occur on the rock. It is this rock that has fallen away and is.
devoid of coral growth that is used as substrate material in the aquarium trade.
Had this material been allowed to stay on the ocean bottom it would have
eventually become part of the marine sediment (i.e. sand) due to the effects of
wave action and boring organisms. This is a continual process as corals grow
and collapse due to wave action, storms, fish, boring organisms, etc. Corals
incorporate free calcium from the water into calcium carbonate as part of their
skeleton. It is estimated that literally tens of thousands of tons of calcium
carbonate is deposited by corals each year! My point here is that live rock is not
a "fossil resource," and although I do not have supporting scientific evidence at
this time, I have little doubt that the rate of calcium carbonate deposition is
orders of magnitude greater than that harvested as live rock for the aquarium
trade!
 If I have not convinced you that the impact on the environment is negligible, let
 me discuss the educational aspects of this wonderful hobby1 Those of us
maintaining marine reef aquaria do not take our responsibilities lightly. The
financial costs alone dictate that these aquaria are not simply "floral
arrangements" where specimens are allowed to die only to be replaced by new
arrivals. There is a genuine concern for all organisms kept such that success is
determined by specimens thriving and reproducing not just "staying alive." Of
course, this concern for our miniature ecosystems naturally includes the wild
ecosystems as well. 1 have become keenly aware of issues affecting natural
coral reefs. In fact, the more I learn the more I am convinced of the importance
of the aquarium as an educational tool. Of the 100+ people who have viewed
my tank, the vast majority will never see a natural coral reef. Before viewing my
tank, corals were nothing more than interesting "rock formations" growing on the
ocean bottom. People who view my tank listen to what I say and walk away with
a new awareness of the importance and beauty of coral animals. For it is only
after becoming aware of something can you begin to care and ultimately act.
I'm not saying that after viewing my tank people go out and petition oil
companies to use multi-hulled ships. However, they will at least be moved
when they hear of a tanker running upon a reef, or of clear-cutting causing
siltation and smothering reefs in tropical island communities, or destructive
fishing methods such as the Mexican shrimp trawlers, or even French nuclea~       _
bomb testing on reefs! Perhaps some will be inspired into direct action;
perhaps others indirectly. The point is that a level of awareness and all the
potential for action has been attained.
 It appears to me that the issue of live rock harvesting has divided "hobbyists"
and "conservationalists." Nothing can be further from the truth. Aquarium
hobbyists are very sensitive of the natural effects of their hobby. If it was
demonstrated that the hobby was truly negatively affecting natural ecosystems,
the vast majority, myself included, would stop today. But I am convinced this is
not the case. The negligible environmental impact that might exist is by far
outweighed by the education the hobby provides. Based on this, I believe in the
context of this issue a "hobbyistn is a person who bases their arguments on
direct observation and fact, whereas a "conservationist" is someone who bases
their arguments on emotion and scare tactics. It is my sincerest hope that cooler
heads will prevail and the controlled harvesting of live rock be allowed to
continue.



                                                Sincerely,



                                                Gregory E. Cook
                                                213 Horizon Avenue
                                                Mountain View, CA 94043
                                                41 51 965-4248
 ; Q   t&u   --            THE SEA FUTURE O R G A N I Z A T I O N .        i n ~ .

                   419 E v e r g r e e n D r i v e .   Destin.    Florida        32541




TO :                THE GULF O F MEXICO.               FISHERIES MANAGEYENT C O U N C I L

RM
FO :                THE SEA FUTURE O R G A N I Z A T I O N .        INC.

DATE :              JANUARY 5 .        1994

SUBJECT:            D E > l O L I T I O N OF NATURAL REEF



          Thank vou f o r a l l o w i n g o u r o r g a n i z a t i o n t h e o ~ ~ o ~ t u n i t v
t o i m ~ r o v ev o u r u n d e r s t a n d i n g o f o u r v i e w s . r e g a r d i n g t h e
c o l l e c t i o n o f l i v e r o c k from t h e m a r i n e environment.

             I t i s o u r d e s i r e t o see t h i s a c t i v i t v s t o ~ D e d . . . ~ e r i o d .

          Our o r g a n i z a t i o n i s d e d i c a t e d t o t h e c r e a t i o n o f m a r i n e
environment.           Our g o a l i s t o e n h a n c e t h e s e m a r i n e e c o s v s t e m
s o t h e v m i g h t b e more ~ r o d u c t i v e . W e u n d e r s t a n d t h a t we have
u n d e r t a k e n a monumental t a s k .            The r e e f we c r e a t e t o d a v w i l l
n o t b e t o t a l l v ~ r o d u c t i v e f o r d e c a d e s t o come.

          I n b u s i n e s s . t h e smart businessman i n v e s t s i n h i s
b u s i n e s s . s e a r c h i n n f o r wavs t o e n h a n c e h i s ~ r o d u c t . Lookine:
f o r wavs h i s o ~ e r a t i o nc o u l d become more e f f e c t i v e a n d
efficient.            T h o s e b u s i n e s s e s t h a t a r e c o n s t a n t l v d r a i n e d of
                          w
t h e i r ~ r o f i t s i l l eventuallv f a i l .

         F a r m e r s u n d e r s t a n d . t h a t t o make t h e i r f i e l d s h a v e t h e
l a r g e s t v i e l d s t h e v must r o t a t e c r o D s and c a r e f o r t h e e a r t h .
I f t h e v d o n ' t g u a r d a g a i n s t wind a n d w a t e r e r o s i o n . i f t h e v
P l a n t t h e same c r o p v e a r a f t e r v e a r . t h e i r v i e l d s w i l l
decrease.

          I a s k vou.         ...
                                i s our undersea world anv d i f f e r e n t ?
...Can                                                                                    e d
            n o t t h e s e s a m e s t r a t e g i e s f o r s u c c e s s b e a ~ ~ l i u nd e r
w a t e r ? W i l l n o t t h e same e x p l o i t a t i o n and i g n o r a n c e s u r e l v
                                                                            I
lead t o failure?

          I n t h i s w o r l d o f b u s i n e s s . i t i s n o t r e a l i s t i c t o have
c o n t r o l o v e r a l l a s ~ e c t s f t h e environment.
                                           o                                 But w h a t
b u s i n e s s do w e want.          F o r e v e r v d o l l a r made f r o m t h i s
d e m o l i t i o n . t h e s t a t e of F l o r i d a s t a n d s t o l o o s e t e n .  The
f i s h i n g industrv. t h e scuba diving industrv. t h e t o u r i s t
industrv w i l l all suffer.              T h e i m ~ a c tw i l l b e f e l t b v manv.
The ~ r o f i t sf r o m t h i s i n d u s t r v we d i s c u s s h e r e . w i l l b e
s h a r e d bv f e w .  And o u r c h i l d r e n w i l l a s k u s whv we l e t i t
hau~en.

                                                                v
     Thank vou a g a i n f o r t h e o ~ ~ o r t u n i t o b e h e a r d .           And
 lease r e m e m b e r . t h e smart b u s i n e s s m a n i n v e s t s i n h i s
assets.


S i n c e r e l v s u b m i t t e d bv.



S a n d v An r e w sa?hh-r e s i d e n t
                     . P
The Sea Future O r a a n i z a t i o n .     inc.
F I- c, :
      rn        H e n r y A . F e d d e r n , PhG
                :55 Dove Ave.
                T a v e r n i e r , F l , 33073

To :           .-
               !.-~l-llf ?f M e x i c o F i s h e r y M,3n,3ga171ent i J . ~ > ~ j i i c ;ii
               S (2 t h A t L 3 n t i c F i s h e r y M a n a g e m e n t c ~ ~ : n c i
                    i-I                                                                   l
               ? l s t i o n a . i Mar l n e F i s h e l - i e s S e r v i c e , S E K e g . G f f i , ; ~

Subject:        L i v e Rock


Dear S i r :

O v e r t h e y e a r s o f t h e L i v e R o c k c o n t r o v e r s y , many s t a t e m e n t - s
h a v e b e e n made f o r a n d a g a i n s t . t h e h a r v e s t o f L i v e R o c k .
T h e s t a t e m e n t s . d a q a i n s t L i v e R o c k h a r v e s t h a v e b e e n ba.:sed on
ernat i o n , a n e c d o t a l i n f o r m a t i o n , o r p h i 113sophy.            The mr3jt3r
c 3 b j e c t i o n t o h a r v e s t i s t h a t l i v e r o c k i s p a r t of t h e
environment and t h a t any harvest at a l l i s detrimental to
that habitat.               T h i s b e l i e f i g n o r e s t h e f a c t t h a t t h e amount
o f h a r v e s t c o m p a r e d t o t h e a m o u n t of r o c k p r e s e n t i s so smal-1
t h a t any e f f e c t s are i n s i g n i f i c a n t .          T h i s b e l i e f , to b e f a i r ,
should he applied to other ocean a c t i v i t i e s where detrimental
e f f e c t s are l a r g e a n d proven.

Almost every scientist writing at t h e request of
e n v i r o n m e n t a l o r g a n i z a t i o n s h a s made s t a t e m e n t s b o t h a g a i n s t
h a r v e s t a n d f o r h a r v e s t , e v e n w i t h i n t h e same l e t t e r s .

S t a t e m e n t s s u p p o r t i n q h a r v e s t h a v e m a i n l y b e e n based o n
s c i e n t i f i c d a t a and logic.             T h e r e is d i s p u t e o v e r t h e
amount o f r o c k r e c r u i t i n g to t h e r e e f i n F l o r i d a , b u t t h e r e
is n o d i s p u t e o v e r w h a t is c u r r e n t l y o u t t h e r e .

T h e r e is n o i r r e v e r s i b l e c a t a s t r o p h i c problem t h a t would
j u s t i f y a b a n o n h a r v e s t i m m e d i a t e l y or i n t h e n e a r f u t u r e .
I ' d l i k e to i l l u s t r a t e t h i s with a rough approximation.                     Ms.
J e n n i f e r Wheaton, c h i e f s c i e n t i s t a t t h e F l o r i d a Marine
R e s e a r c h I n s t i t u t e (FMRI), h a s said t h a t m o s t o f t h e L i v e
Rock is c o l l e c t e d a l o n g a 40-mile s t r e t c h o f t h e F l o r i d a
Keys.         FMRI d a t a s h o w s t h a t t h e t o t a l c a t c h f r o m a l l a r e a s i n
1 9 9 2 ( t h e l a s t f u l l y e a r o f d a t a ) w a s a b o u t 400 t o n s .       The
d a t a s h o w s t h a t 3 9 % of t h i s w a s c o l l e c t e d f r o m t h e a r e a i n
question.           T h i s m e a n s t h a t 156 t o n s w e r e c o l l e c t e d i n t h e 4 0 -
mile stretch.               One t o n o f L i v e Rock ( a c u b i c y a r d i n s i z e )
s p r e a d o u t i n t o a layer 4 i n c h e s t h i c k would c o v e r a s q u a r e
a r e a a b o u t 112 f e e t o n a s i d e .          If these squares were strung
a l o n g t h e 4 0 - m i l e l e n g t h , t h e r e w o u l d be w e l l o v e r 2 t h o u s a n d
o f them.         I f h a r v e s t were k e p t t o c u r r e n t l e v e l s , i t would
take over 2 thousand years to harvest that s t r i p .                              Within 5
y e a r s , r o c k e x p o s e d by t h e h a r v e s t w o u l d become more L i v e
Rock   .
  SEIJP~~S~P       61-11                           '
                        Eipa~p a a u e u a q u ! ~ ~ s q a a c o ~ dquawqs!~nou qaeaq
    ' 6 u T q s r ~ do^ ~ e 3 s                                         qu    j
                               pue qs!jpuno~b oq p a ~ ~ d m o 3 e a ~ T U ~ I S U I
                 S T ( 7 3 0 ~ A ~ 1 ) ~ a q s r jsrqq Xq pasnea aaupqJnqsrp
                               a       X
              aqq qeqq ~ P a d d pp ~ n o m7 1 'uo 05 XaqL * u o ~ q e q u a m ~ p a s
                  Xq
 pue 1 ~ l ~ n q aqrs quawqsl~nou aqq 7~ s ~ a a ~ - m ~ o~ n ~ d m l T P  r3       OS
                   d
u e s ~ z ~ a c o lasaqL
      ~                    ' 6 u ? s s a ~ q 3 PUP H N a qqrm uo 0 6 sq3aFold
                                            ~   a
      a                                                                w
               .Xqlprq~nqquepuaqqe aqq pup ~ e l ~ a q e30 s p ~ e X3rqn3
                    ~                                                   s
 go s u o ! ~ ~ !jo 6 u r 5 p a ~ paqq worj u o ~ q ~ q u a w r p a30 qaedm! aqq
 qnoqe u ~ a ~ u o ~                                          4aa3
                      passaJdxa aAeq afi * s q z ~ ~ ~ q T ~ J O Z I           la1 T P J ~ ~
  uaamqaq seaJp M O J J O ~ aAeq e p r r o ~ j      40 qseoa qseaqqnos aqq uo
 s q a a r o ~ dquamqsrrnou qaeaq aqL          * s q 3 e d w 1 , :a6ed p ~ r q qaqq uo
               '              y         A!                                t3
  sal~-+s ~ s l a ~ o r q u o a ~ a oT ~aqq 40 X 6 o ~ o u o ~ q2 6 u ~ ~ r e 7 a p
           r
    . ~~ a 6 q     sPalpuy oq y y o ~         os~a
                                          30 u ! ! !                              3
                                                            u o ! q ~ ~ ~ a s u oq ~ q ~ q e ~
-aq? 30 laudday urmp3 . J M Xq 6 8 6 1 ' P Z ~ r ~ d y ua3q:Jm omam y
                                                                  uo

                                         .saq:s aspa1 uo S Y ~ O J ah? 1 amoaaq
c13 sy3o-r peap J O J      pup ' s q r w ~ a dasoqq aA~a3a-r      pup 303 X ~ d d eoq
                                      b~                             oq
a ~ d o a d 103 ' e ~ n q l n z ~ o n303 suo!qe~n6ar d o ~ a ~ a p q u a w u ~ a ~ o 6
                                                                          !
     aqq J O J p a J 1 n b a ~S F am13 uaqq 'qno paseqd aq oq s 7 s a ~ ~ e q
 ~ 1 1 1 ~ ' a u o X ~ a A a07 J J P J aq o~
          37                                                            a
                                                 . s s a a o ~ dq~w-rad l n q ~ n a ~ n h e
              UP a          a a                              6        aqL
                      ~ u~ ~ q q ,usaop q u a m u ~ a ~ o~ ~ ~ a p a d . q ? u ~ a d
        aJnJ~n3~nb~      aqaldmo3 e qqrm dn am03 qou 1 1 jqs seq q.10~3a
     jo s - r ~ a X J ~ J J PP ~ ~ J O T O aqeqs aqq 'am?? quasa-rd aqq ~y
                                         JJ

                                                -uo:?anpo~da~      pue 'qqmolh
                 203
    ' ~ P A ~ A J ~ S               aqq
                      m n ~ ~ ~ n b eu~ suo!q!puo3       a l q ~ q r n sU:PJU!PU
        OJ y ~ o u A ~ l
                     a       uo puadap qsom aaurs a s m s 1 u e 6 ~ o   mn!~enbe
        aqPlqaq~aAu! qsou 40 q s a ~ ~ ~ q       aqq 73edrn~ X ~ a l a ~ aTsT J M
                                                  aAr7 J O 3 s a A ~ e q6u!uu~g
aA!qeu~a? T G 6 u 1 7 p ~ a d ou p 3noqJT M y ~ o a
.-
.r~lJi:h beach n,>ljrishment project i r l 1333 ! > , f f G . ? , j + :;;;:~,>t,.;
         a
irnpa~zted 9 , o s i roef site:^.
                  :r                        I:? k.he ~ W C Z J no:^:. z e v e r + ; v
 ;:'!t:
! m l a : a d ::i Le:?, ,lvr;lr 25,9011                                           2
                                                i;,=r,3; . : : 1 3 ! . > i l ; e ~ ,4 ,:::::;:? .3;3ft
~ o r a i  czolonies,         2 , 0 0 0 b3rrel. ~;plznge;, arnc:~:lg 12t!-leys,
w e r e ,?551:1-:^~ye(:]. s beach n o u r ishrr;ent
                         Ha                                          !:a!lned.?

 ~-
-,-n e  Glilf t l j f Mexico :_-urai  advisory panel that ificL1jde~2?!I-.
Ei ! i;/ Ca.u5ey, manager of the d e : igna t-ed Flor idd. K e y s ;\t'ati12na
                                             ~                                 ;
Msrine SinctlJary, ca.me t o a compromise consensus that : f e e l
                                    .
is fair t c all parties, and that will allow all parties t.1) be
~ i n n e r s . This c!znsenl;us requires that both Coun,;i ;:-;   ji:pr~.,~;e
simi lor n-~dnagement          plans far Live Rock. The main p c i n t : ~ of
t.h i :s conl;en:~r~s    3 re:
          1 . A wild harvest limited by a daily trip limit a n d
                                                    e
.:m~ted e~itry to the fishery. B e c s ~ ~ sthe Gulf and At ; a n t i s
 8   .   '



are different, a 3-year harvest and 1000 lb. daily !imit was
approved for the Gulf, and a 2-year harvest and 50C l h . daily
1 imi t was approved for the Atlantic.
         2.    The prohibition of harvest is to be tied t.o t h e
ac tl~al success and product ion of 1 ive rock from aqua.cu1           t-ure.
Government is thus induced to make rapid progress in                        --
developing fair and practical aquaculture lease regulations.
The simpler, cheaper, and more feasible the regulations are,
the quicker businesses will invest money into this very
speculative venture and hopefully prove i t out.
         3. Periodic reviews of the progress of aquaculture
permitting procedures, aquaculture permit applications, an3
aquaculture itself.

Aquaculture, if feasible, would increase the amount of
shelter habitat for many organisms, since i t would b e d o n e in
areas lacking such habitat. The feasibility depends entirely
on the type of governmental regulations and restrictions
placed on the activity.

The amendment states in its summary on page 25: " I t has been
concluded that an a1 location a1 lowing both consumptive and
non-consumptive users of the live rock resource to remain in
the fishery may be accompanied by a relatively higher net-
benefit to society than any of the other proposed
allocation(s) including the no action alternative."

I urge you t o pass a fair, reasonable and feasible Live Rock
plan that allows every group to win. This type of plan will
reach its goal with the minimum of time, controversy, and
oppos i t- ion.
From. Donald Ahee TO: TERRY LEARY                                Dale. 1110194 Erne. 15.44:45
                                                                                                      -               Page 1 ol 1




                                                             F. Donald Ahee, Jr.
                                                                                          TAB-&-             - ---
                                                                                                          NO,5ji7)
                                                            390 1 East Broadway Blvd.
                            4 , g p J.:L;!-
                                c p i 1"
                                              :.
                                                   c:,.   ;; !TTX%, r"P2
                                                           $J
                                                             Tucson, Arizona 857 1 1

                                                                   &&-du<
                                                                              -s-5;p.
                                                                                    :
                                                                                    '           ..

                                                                                                i3d   a      1    :
                                                                                                                 e%   r.
                                                                                                                      3.




          January 11: 1994


          klr. 'l'crry Lcary
          Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council
          Via Facsimile



          Mr. Lcary:

          1 understand that your organization is currently rcvicwing thc collcction practiccs and regulations
          concerning live ocean rock. I'd like to register my views.

          I feel there are forces acting against our ocean resources that need active attention. Forces such as siltation,
          pcsticidcs, fcrtilizcrs, boating and anchor damagc, food fishing abuscs, curios collcction, and gcncral
          pollution are challenging our oceans. I do not however, see collecting for the aquarium hobby as-a-
          ovcrwhclming factor in rclation to thcsc othcr sourccs of occan rcsourcc degradation.

          1 bclicvc livc rock can bc, and should bc managcd and rcgulatcd as a rcncwablc rcsourcc. I favor thc
          licensing of collectors beyond basic fishing licenses and phasing out wild collection while phasing in of the
          aquaculturc of rock ovcr a 5 ycar pcriod.

          I'm a dcvotcd aquarist successfully kccping livc corals for scvcral ycars. 1 cannot cxprcss how valuablc this
          hobby is to the education of myself and others on these fantastic animals. My peers and I are developing
          propagation tcchmqucs that wc fccl will lcad to complctc aquaculturc of all thcsc animals in thc futurc.
          Live rock is the basis for these advances by which critical biological and zoological seeds s o w into
          scientific discovery as wcll as cducational display.

          I'lcasc considcr thcsc points in your dccisions.

          'Ihank you,



          Don Ahcc, Jr.
5-7065           SOFTCQRE TECH.   INC.




 Softcare
 Technologies, Inc.
 Christopher A. f ippins
 Prssident
         I"sOkMI0tl Consultant
 Cert~fied




January 12, 1994

Terry Leary
The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council
Lincoln Center, Suite 331
5401 West Kennedy Blvd.
Tampa, FL - 33609
1-813-228-2815 1-813-225-7015 (Fax)

Dear Mr. Leary,
                                                                                 -   -




My name is Christopher A. Tippins. I live in Miami, Florida. I currently
maintain a 135 gallon marine ''living reef' aquarium using live rock to
provide essential biological functions as well as aesthetic natural
appearances. I also have two 55 gallon aquariums that I will be
converting over to use live rock in the near future, as this provides, in my
experience, a much sounder method of biological filtration then standard
undergravel filters.

In my immediate area I know of approximately 3 dozen other hobbyists
who also employ live rock in the marine aquariums. I believe that live
rock is an essential component to a successful marine tank.

the purpose of this kUer is to petition you to continue to allow a
managed harvest of live rock in federal waters, and to go on public
record favoring such a position. I would also like to request a copy of
your findings and rewmmendations when they are ready.

1 support those businesses which collect this rock in compliance with
applicable State and Federal regulations. Additionally, I support the
continuing efforts to scientifically study the impact live rock collection has
on the marine environment as well as Marts to educate the public on
other environmental factors that may impact our seas.




                                         -
                 1650 NE 115th Street Suite 111 - Miami, FL 33181
                                               -
                    V o i d a x (305) 895-7065 CIS 72530.215
                SOFTCRRE TECH.   INC.




It is my personal opinion that other factors (such as dredging,                       -.


deforestation, pollution, gas and oil drilling or exploration) constitute a                \
                                                                                           ;
much more serious threat to the life in our oceans and waterways than
does the harvest of live rock.

A simple and recent case in point is the recent rupture of the hull of an
oil tanker off the coast of San Juan, Puerto Rim, which has caused
untold loss of sea life, and probably has destroyed for many, many
years, the ecosystem of that region.

I would like to see the efforts of your organization directed towards these
vitally important issues, as I believe they will cause both a short and
long term detrimental effect to our marine environment.

The keeping of a "living reef' marine aquarium has brought to me (and
many others as well) countless hours of enjoyment, as well as (and more
importantly) a greater understanding and concern for the delicate
relationship we have with the marine environment.

I am a member of the Marine Aquarium Society of North America.           -    -   _

I am also a member and Vice President of the Florida Marine Aquarium
Society.

The opinions expressed in this letter are my own, and do not reflect the
opinions of either M.A.S.N.A. or F.M.A.S.

I appreciate this opponunity to bring these matters to your attention.


Sincerely,




Christopher A. Tippins
     TAB -
..
/f='-JbUPi

l&?ycme/v
                                                Statement on
                                    Enacting a Ban on Live Rock Collection
   Project
 Reef Keeper                                      presented to
                                 the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council
                                                       at
                                           Pensacola, FL on January 11
  OPERATIONS CENTER
        Suite 162
      2809 Bird Ave
   Miarn~.
         Flor~da 33133                                  bY
                                               Project ReefKeeper
                                          1800 SW First Street -- Suite 306
                                                                                         -   -
                                                 Miami, FL 33135


    CARIBBEAN REGION
          Suite 1271
       Castillo Del Mar
lsla Verde. Puerto Rim 00913         Good afternoon.

                                     My name is Wayne Ashmore and I am here as an official
                               representative of Project ReefKeeper, the national conservation
                               organization exclusively dedicated to the protection of coral
                               reefs and their marine life.
    PACIFIC REGION
      Suite 106-542                   Now that the Council is about to decide what to take to
    350 Ward Avenue
  Honolulu, Hawaii 96814       public hearing as its preferred option for dealing with live rock
                               collection, Project ReefKeeper again urges you to stand fast on
                               enacting a ban on live rock collection.




LATIN AMERICAN REGION
   Calle 60 No. 387-C
     Merida, Yucatan
      Mexico 97000
      We are joined in that request by 143 organizations
representing millions of people. By endorsing the letter which we
have provided to all Council members, these 143 groups are all
asking that a ban on live rock collection be adopted as an
amendment to the joint Corals and Coral Reefs Fishery
Management Plan for the Gulf of Mexico and the South Atlantic.

       It is simply not good enough to write into the Fishery
Management Plan a mere intention to ban live rock collection
three years from now. Only you and your fellow South Atlantic
~'uncil members can see to it that real reduction or prohibition of
live rock collection actually becomes a reality.              --
      Project ReefKeeper and 143 other groups strongly support
the immediate prohibition of live rock collection. But if there must
be a phase- out of live rock collection, then we must insist on a
three-year tiered phase-out, with gradual evenly diminishing
collection quotas over the 3 years. Starting with the best estimate
of landings for 1993, a tiered phase-out should reduce that amount
by 33 percent each year until the landings quota reaches zero.

       Such a three-year tiered phase-out of collection will ensure
immediate and increasing relief to the habitat upon amendment
ratification by the Secretary of Commerce.

       It will prevent the escalation of live rock collection over the
next 3 years that would otherwise come in response to closed
collection in the U.S. Caribbean and increased market demand.




      It will discourage the entry of new collectors into the field .
      it will remove any incentive for present collectors to go into
debt to expand their collection capabilities.

      And it will cause an immediate incentive for those same
collectors to aggressively pursue aquaculture now in order to
make up for the tiered quota reductions for wild live rock.

       That scenario is the only one that makes sense in order to
protect the habitat and still provide for a rational and orderly
transition to live rock aquaculture.

      The exact opposite will happen if you go along with just -

setting a date three years from amendment ratification for
cessation of live rock collection.

      Think about it, please, and factor in human nature.

      During those 3 years, market demand will cause wild live
rock collection to increase instead of decrease.

     For at least the first 2 of those 3 years, there will be no
pressure to move towards aquaculture. But there will be plenty of
market demand to bring new collectors into the field, and to push
present collectors to increase their collecting capacity.

       Finally, when the closure date begins to loom on the horizon,
the drive will be to collect even more and more in order to build up
inventories as a hedge against the closure. There will no longer be
enough time to make aquaculture work before the closure of wild
live rock collection.

     And then the other shoe will fall. Live rock collectors will
come to you and demand that the collection closure date be
postponed into the future, so they can do what they would have
done in the first place had there been a tiered collection phase-out
schedule in place.

       We hope that is not what you will allow. We would find such a
scenario -- and its devastation of coral habitat -- to be utterly
unacceptable and unconscionable. And so would the millions of
people represented by the 144 groups on record requesting a stop
to live rock collection in the South Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico.

      Please don't let them -- and our coral habitats -- down.
                BRIEFING BOOK iciDD
              National Alliance
            to Protect Liue Rock

                                                          January 3, 1994



To: Council Members
    Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council
    South Atlantic Fishery Management Council


Dear Council Members:

       The 144 undersigned organizations -- representing millions of concern-ed citizens
-- are opposed to any collection of coral or live rock within state or federal waters.
       It takes decades for countless generations of fragile, dime-sized coral polyps to
build a single coral head -- and centuries to build coral reefs. Yet coral reefs and hard-
bottoms in the South Atlantic are in trouble and literally being chiseled away at an
alarming rate due to live rock collection.

        Live rock is coral reef substrate or rubble with attached marine life such as
sponges, anemones and soft corals. Collected live rock cannot be replenished on a
biological time scale, as can all other fishery resources. It follows that each time a piece
of live rock is removed from the reef, it is unlikely that it will be renewed in our children's
-- or our grandchildren's -- lifetime.
        Finally, live rock formations provide essential habitat to countless marine
creatures. Continued collection of live rock seriously disrupts -- or even destroys --
entire reef microcommunities.

      We therefore respectfully request that the South Atlantic Fishery ~anagement
Council move without delay to ban the collection of live rock within federal waters of the
South Atlantic because live rock collection is mining rather than harvesting of a
renewable fishery resource, and because the microhabitat value of live rock justifies a
complete prohibition on its collection.

                                                           Respectfully submitted,

                               National      Organizations
American Littoral Society                             Sandy Hook
Dery Bennett                                          Highlands, NJ 07732
Center for Marine Conservation               One Beach Dr. SE -- Ste 304
Paul G. Johnson                              St. Petersburg, FL 33701

Compuserve Scuba Forum                       334 Portico Ct.
Frank Howard                                 Chesterfield, MO 63017

Environmental Defense Fund                   Rockridge Market Hall
Rodney M. Fujita, Ph.D                       5655 College Ave.
                                             Oakland, CA 94618

Greenpeace                                   P.O. Box 384
Bruce Jaildagian                             New Smyrna Bch, FL 32170

International Marine Alliance                201 West Stassney -- Ste 408
Vaughn R. Pratt                              Austin, T X 78745-3156

Island Conservation Effort                   90 Edgewater Dr. #901
Martha Walsh-McGehee                         Coral Gables, FL 33133

National Audubon Society                     Scully Science Center
Carl Safina                                  306 South Bay Avenue
                                             Islip, NY 11751          -   -

National Coalition for Marine Conservation   5113 Bissonet Drive
Bethlyn McCloskey                            Metaire, LA 70003

Natural Resources Defense Council            40 West 20th St.
Lisa Speer                                   New York, NY 10011-4211

Project ReefKeeper                                         -
                                             2809 Bird Ave Ste 162
Alexander Stone                              Miami, FL 33160

Sierra Club National Marine Committee        1414 Hilltop Dr.
Shirley Taylor                               Tallahassee, FL 32303

Underwater Society of America (NY)           10 Redfield St.
Rick D'Amico                                 Rye, NY 10580

World Wildlife Fund                          1250 24th St, N.W.
Tundi Agardy                                 Washington, DC 20037


                        State and Local Organizations
                                  Florida
1000 Friends of Florida                      524 E College Ave.
James Murley                                Tallahassee, FL 32301

Alachua Audubon Society                      P.O. Box 140464
John C. Winn                                 Gainesville, FL 32614-0464

Audubon Society of the Everglades            P.O. Box 6762
Elwood Bracey                                W. Palm Bch, FL 33405
Audubon Society, Panhandle Chapter                  4330 Maywood Drive
Ed Hebb                                             Marianna, FL 32446

Byrne-Rinehart Associates                           5830 SW 73 St.
Thomas E. Byrne                                     Miami, FL 33143

Central Florida Pleasure Divers                     3022 Hidalgo Dr.
Dee Parkes                                          Orlando, FL 32812

Citizens for Wekiva Springs                         1800 Wekiwa Circle
Dean E. Mair                                        Apopka, FL 32712

The Conservancy                                     1450 Merrihue Drive
Christina Ramsey                                    Naples, FL 33942

Coral Reef Community Foundation                     633 Island Dr.
Alice Biays                                         Key Largo, FL 33037

Environmental Coalition of Broward                  521 S. Andrew Ave. -- Ste 3
Dianne Petitjean                                    Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33301

Florida Audubon Society                             460 Highway 436 -- Ste 200-   -

Bernard J. Yokel, Ph.D                              Casselberry, FL 32707

Florida Defenders of the Environment                P.O. Box 8
Robin Hart                                          Sarasota, FL 34230

Florida Environmental Alliance                      P.O. Box 254
Linda Young                                         Tallahassee, FL 32302

Florida Keys Audubon Society                        P.O. Box 633
Curtis Kruer                                        Big Pine Key, FL 33043

Florida Keys Campaign   -- Clean Water Action       P.O. Box 137
Joyce Newman                                        Big Pine Key, FL 33043

Florida Keys Environmental Fund                     P.O. Box 448
Marabeth Causey                                     Islamorada, FL 33036

Florida Keys Initiative -- The Nature Conservancy   201 Front St.
Mark L. Robertson                                   Key West, FL 33040

Florida Keys Project - The Wilderness Society       8065 Overseas Highway
Debbie Harrison                                     Marathon, FL 33050

Florida League of Anglers                           P.O. Box 1109
Norma Stoppelbein                                   Sanibel, FL 33957

Florida Wildlife Federation                         P.O. Box 687
Manley Fuller                                       Tallahassee, FL 32314
HML Ecology Club                               930 W. 80th PI.
Lucy Cifuentes                                 Hialeah, FL 33014

Innerspace Visions Divers                      Box 557095
Doug Perrine                                   Miami, FL 33255

lzaac Walton League of the Florida Keys        P.O. Box 112
Svenn Lindskold                                Islamorada, FL 33036
KSC Barracudas                                 1840 Crawford Ave.
Grace Hampton                                  Merritt Isle, FL 32303

Last Stand                                     1330 Atlantic Blvd
Jim McLernan                                   Key West, FL 33040

Manasota-88                                    5314 Bay State Rd.
Gloria C. Rains                                Palmetto, FL 34221

Ocean Expo Associates                          2233 Keystone Blvd
Susan M. Payette                               N. Miami, FL 33181

Ocean Trust International                      P.O. BOX 52-0573             -   -
Sharon Kegeles                                 Miami, FL 33152
Ormond Anchor Chasers                          2609 N. Peninsula Dr.
John Lane                                      Daytona Bch, FL 321 18
Palm Beach Diving Association                  180 East 13th St.
Rodney Lee, Sr.                                Riviera, Beach, FL 33404

People Organized to Prevent Pollution          18748 Drayton St.
Betty Tillis                                   Spring Hill, FL 34610
Project Environmentally Safe Shores            1511 Hudson Rd
Doug Driscoll                                  Venice, FL 34293
Reef Relief                                    P.O. Box 430
DeeVon Quirolo                                 Key West, FL 33040
Save the Wildlife                              351 East Fourth St.
Cindy Westra                                   Chuluota, FL 32766
Sierra Club Florida Chapter                    18311 SW 89 Ct.
Sandy Jensen                                   Miami, FL 33157
South Florida Underwater Photography Society   19101 Mystic Pte. Dr. #609
Cynthia Prettyman                              N. Miami Bch, FL 33180
Suncoast Reef Rowdies                          P.O. Box 41 1
Robert BOurke                                  Pinellas Park, FL 34664
University of Miami Marine Science Ass'n                 Marine Science Program U.M
Michael P. Connell                                       Coral .Gables, FL 33124

Upper Keys Citizens Association                          P.O. BOX 141
Dagny Johnson                                            Tavernier, FL 33070

Volusia-Flagler Sierra Club Group                        P.O. Box 1853
Jack Kleinberg                                           Ormond Bch, FL 32175

Watercolor Divers                                        P.O. BOX9131
Charlene R Johnson                                       Ocala, FL 32670

The Wildlife Connection                                  351 E. 4th Street
Heidi Higdon                                             Chuluota, FL 32766

Wildlife Education & Rehabilitation Center               P.O. Box 1418
Michael Conley                                           Anna Maria, FL 34216-1418


                         S t a t e and L o c a l Organizations
                          O t h e r S o u t h A t l a n t i c States
                                                                                    - .

Aqua Venture Divers (SC)                                 426 Coleman Blvd
Mike Hegel                                               Mt. Pleasant, SC 29464

Atlanta Divers (GA)                                      3853G Lawrenceville Hwy.
Peter Vicars                                             Tucker, GA 30084

Atlanta Oceans                                           P.O. Box 12198
Joe Jordan                                               Atlanta, GA 30355

Atlanta Scuba Club (GA)                                  3853G Lawrenceville Hwy.
Peter Vicars                                             Tucker, GA 30084

Aquatic Engineers of Georgia (GA)                        38536 Lawrenceville Hwy.
Peter Vicars                                             Tucker, GA 30084

Charbon Sports Club (GA)                                 575 Hawthorne Ave.
W. Mack Martin                                           Athens, GA 30606

Charlotte Divers (NC)                                    601K S. Kings Dr.
James Seay                                               Charlotte, NC 28204

Clairemont Divers (NC)                                   P.O. Box 877
Gene Monday                                              Clairemont, NC 28610

Dive South Scuba Club (GA)                               836 South Main
Tom Lambie                                               Statesboro. GA 30458

Gypsy Divers (NC)                                        1019 E. Whitaker Mill Rd
Dave Farrar                                              Raleigh, NC 27608
Hatteras Divers (NC)                                P.O. BOX 213
Donny Lang                                          Hatteras, NC 27943

lsland Divers (GA)                                  107 Marina Dr.
Judy Wright                                         St. Simons Island, GA 31522

lsland Hoppers Dive Club (NC)                       2827 Spring Garden St.
Mary K. M. Nesbit                                   Greensboro, NC 27403

Lakewood Divers (AR)                                2925 Lakewood Village Dr.
Doug Lewter                                         N. Little Rock, AR 721 16

Little Rock Divers (AR)                             1222 Westpark
Mike McCrory                                        Little Rock, AR 72204

Marietta Divers (GA)                                950 S. Cobb Parkway -- Ste 160
Mike Van Hosen                                      Marietta, GA 30062

Memphis Divers (TN)                                 999 S. Yates
Doug McNeese      -                                 Memphis, TN 381 19

Nag's Head Divers (NC)                              3941 S. Croatan Hwy,-- Ste 114
Ginny Nutter                                        P.O. Box 665
                                                    Nag's Head, NC 27959

New Dive Crew (NC)                                  333 Jonestown Rd.
Bryan E. Holder                                     Winston-Salem, NC 27104

Wet Set Divers (SC)                                 5121 Rivers Ave.
Jack Williamson                                     Charleston, SC 29418


                          State   and L o c a l Organizations
                                   U.S. Caribbean

Laurie Dunton                                       PO Box 588
Anchor Divers                                       St Croix, USVl 00823

Jose Rodriguez                                      PO Box 40893
Antilles Divers                                     San Juan, PR 00940

Bob Kreisel                                         6501 Red Hook Plaza #I5
Aqua Action Divers                                  St. Thomas, USVl 00802

Jose Rafols Sallaberry                              Rte 110, Krn 10, Gate 5,
Aquatica Underwater Adventurers                     Aguadilla, PR 00604

Jose Guillermo Rodrigues                            Apdo 7186
Assoc De Estudiantes De Ecologia                    Ponce, PR 00732

Fernando Gornez Gornez                              PO Box 364424
Assoc Puertorriquena de Recursos de Agua            San Juan, PR 00905
Peter Zerzigon                                   Calle Colmei # 119, Apt 3b
Blue Water Scuba                                 San Turce, PR 00907

Mario Caruso                                     PO Box 902
Calypso Divers                                   Lajas, PR 00667

Bill Moore                                       HC-01, BOX4181
Captain Bill's Divers                            Rincon, PR 00677

Dave Fredebeugh                                  PO Box 93, Red Hook
Caribbean Divers                                 St Thomas, USVl 00801

Gene Thomas                                      P.O. Box 467
Caribbean Marine Services                        Culebra, PR 00775

Caribbean Research Institute                     Environmental Resource Center
Norman J. Quinn                                  University of the Virgin Islands
                                                 St. Thomas, USVl 00830

Michael Newell                                   La Concha Box 4195
Caribbean School of Aquatics                     San Juan, PR 00902

Karen Vega                                       P.O. Box 2470
Caribe Aquatic Adventurers                       San Juan, PR 00902

Jorge Pereira                                    HC-Box 13339 Bo Pajuil
C.E.D. D.A.                                      Hatillo. PR 00659

Fernando Rodriguez                               Calle Tulipan #BA-16,
Centro de Buceo                                  Carolina, PR 00983

Christie Swingen                                 41-6-1 Frydenhoj
Chris Sawyer Divers                              St Thomas, USVl 00802

Peter Jackson                                    PO Box 5279
Coki Beach Dive Club                             St Thomas, USVl 00803

Ellezer Colon Rivera                             Apdo 123
Comite Despertar Cireno                          Cidra, PR 00639

Comite Junqueno Pro Rescate del Medio Ambiente   P.O. Box 633
Edwin Hernandez                                  Juncos, PR 00777

Jose Bangochea Rodriguez                         Calle 9 #G-11
Comite Pro Buen Arnbiente de Guayanilla          Guayanilla, PR 00858

Richard Metcalfe                                 10-19 Estate Carolina
Coral Bay Watersports Ass'n                      St John, USVl 00830

Jim Abbott                                       Box CUHF
Coral Head Divers                                Humacao, PR 00661
Serafin Labrador                            P o Box 4 194
Coral Reef Divers                           Puerto Real, PR 00740

Marcus Johnston                             PO Box 252
Cruz Bay Watersports Ass'n                  St John, USVl 00830

Tom Long                                    12 Strand StIFrederiksted
Cruzan Divers                               St Croix, USVl 00840

David Martinez                              Lepanto #I 6, Alamein
Dive Company of Puerto Rico                 Rio Piedras, PR 00926

Sam Halverson                               PO 4254 / Christiansted
Dive Experience                             St. Croix, USVl 00822

Jorge Pereira                               HC-Box 13339 Bo Pajuil
Diving Adventurers                          Hatillo, PR 00659

Victor Torres                               Marginal Brasilla # C30
Fantasy Scuba club                          Vega Baja, PR 00693

Myrna Pagan De Connely                      Calle Flamboyan 138 _       -   -
                de
F i d e c o m i ~ Conservacion de Vieques   Vieques, PR 00765

Richard Scott                               PO Box 2180
Hi-Tec Watersports Ass'n                    St Thomas, USVl 00803

Hans Peter                                  PO Box 170
Humacao Divers                              Humacao, PR 00791

Jose Rafols                                 P.O. Box 350
Liga Ecologica del Oeste                    Ramey, PR 00604

Cindy Gines Sanchez                         Apdo 503
Liga Ecologica de Rincon                    Rincon, PR 00743

Ann Marie Estes                             PO Box 43 1/ Cruz Bay
Low Key Watersports Ass'n                   St. John, USVl00831

Jaime Brauleo                               PO Box 3660
Mayaguez Divers                             Mayaguez, PR 00708

Luis Torres                                 Laguna Gardens Center
Mundo Submarino Divers                      lsla Verde. PR 00929

Susan M. Skewes                             Mongoose Junction
Mongoose Junction Merchants Ass'n.          St. John, USVl 00830

Ben Schwartz                                Vets Dr Stat, Box 3030
Ocean Fantasies                             St Thomas, USVl00803
Leslie Cook                                      Avenida lsla Verde #77
Ocean Sports                                     lsla Verde, PR 00913

Edwin Hernandez Delgado                           PO Box 598
Org de Comunidades Ambientales del Este           Fajardo, PR 00738

Kurt Grossem                                     Santa lsidra Ill, E6
Puerto Rico Divers                                Fajardo, PR 00738

Carlos Guzman                                    Rd #1 A25 Villa Del Rey
Scuba Connection Divers                          Caguas, PR 00725

Felix Rivera                                     Box 4178
Sea Venture Divers                               Puerto Real, PR 00740

Hector Quintero                                  InterAm Univ Box 5100
Sociedad de Historia Natural                     San German, PR 00753

Kurt Serik                                       59 Kings WharfICrstetd
St. Croix Diving Ass'n                           St. Croix, USVl 00820

David Skewes                                     PO Box 70 / Cruz Bay      - .

St. John Watersports Ass'n                       St. John, USVl 00830

William G Letts                                  7147 Bolongo Bay
St Thomas Diving Ass'n                           St. Thomas,USVI 00802

Jose Garcia                                      6300 Estate Frydenhoj
St Thomas Yacht Ass'n                             St Thomas, USVl00802


                         S t a t e and Local Organizations
                             Hawaii & Western Pacific

Atla Pac Weighmasters Tournament                 3352 Ala Akulikuli St.
Roland Galacgag, Sr.                             Honolulu, HI 96818

Molokai Visitor's Association                    P.O. Box 960
Barbara Schonely                                 Kaunakakai, HI 96748

Outrigger Canoe Club                             2909 Kalakaua Ave.
Raymond Ludwig                                   Honolulu, HI 96815

Pride Charters Association                       208 Kenolio Rd.
Antoinette M. Davis                              Kihei, HI 96753

Sierra Club Maui Conservation Committee          SR Box 190
Lisa Hamilton                                    Hana, HI 96713

The Ocean Recreation Council of Hawaii           P.O. Box 5306
Terry Lischer                                    Kailua-Kona, HI 96745
                           State     and L o c a l Organizations
                                       Other States

    Aquatic Resource Center (IL)                       P.O. Box 414
    Tim Early                                          Dolton, lL 60419

    Beneath the Sea (NY)                               10 Redfield St.
    Rick D'Arnico                                      Rye, NY 10580

    Explorers Club of Pittsburgh (PA)                  12985 Perry Highway
    Sue Srniley                                        Wexford, PA 15090

    Kitsap Diving Association (WA)                     P.O. Box 1302
-   Donald L. Larson                                   Bremerton, WA 983 10-051 1

    Long Island Diver's Association (NY)               11 Potomac Ct.
    Steven L. Puleo                                    Coram, NY 11727

    Maine Marine Explorers Scuba Club (ME)             784 Turner Rd.
    Donald J. Bernard                                  Auburn, ME 04210

    Mudhole Divers (MO)                                124 Merryfield Circle -  --

    Mary Bowles                                        St. Charles, MO 63303-6540

    Ocean Treasures (MI)                               1819 Fletcher St.
    Gregory R. Mann                                    Lansing, MI 48910

    Oxford Divers (MS)
    Doug Mc Neese                                      Oxford, MS

    Sea Knights (CA)                                   6558 N. Callisch
    Marlene Forbes                                     Fresno, CA 93710

    Washington Scuba Alliance (WA)                     120 State Avenue
    Donald L. Larson                                   Olympia, WA 98501
 ENVIRONMENTAL
 DEFENSE FUND

                                                                                                                Culifvrrria Office
                                                                                                                Rockridge Market Hall
                                                                                                                5655 College Ave.
                                                                                                                Oakland. CA 946 15
                                                                                                                (5 10) 658-8008
May 25, 1993                                                                                                    Fax: 310-6%-0630


TO: FISHERY MANAGEMENT COUNCIL MEMBERS

     I write to fully support Project ReefKeeper's initiative
to ban the collection of liverock from all American coral
habitats. I have often observed the importance of liverock as
a nursery ground for young corals, anemones, and many other
organisms during my research as a marine ecologist in the
Florida Keys and as a recreational diver. The scientific
basis for a ban on collection is sound: (1) liverock is an
essential component of intact, healthy coral reefs; (2) coral
reefs are indeed subject to powerful sources of erosion -       -                                                                    -
constantly, and therefore can ill afford to lose material to
collectors; and ( 3 ) coral reefs cope with erosion with growth,
and growth is threatened by a number of factors at present,
and is likely to be reduced even further by global warming and
perhaps ozone depletion.
     Liverock provides a calm, sheltered, and complex nursery
zone for juvenile animals. It is a product of calcium
carbonate fixation by corals and calcareous algae, which is
dependent upon photosynthesis and growth. Calcium carbonate
makes up the structural framework upon which all life on the
reef depends. This ca.lcium carbonate is under constant attack
by the forces of erosion, including waves, tidal flow,
parrotfishes, boring sponges and clams, and endolithic algae.
In healthy reefs growing under optimal climatic and water
quality conditions, there is net accumulation of calcium
carbonate (in periods of modest sea level rise) as the reefs
grow vertically and horizontally. However, many reefs are
growing in suboptimal conditions, including all American
reefs. Reefs in Hawaii, Florida, Puerto Rico, and the US
Virgin Islands are near the northern limit of coral
distribution. In these areas, calcium carbonate production
would be about equal to losses to erosion, in the absence of
pollution or other forms of stress. However, these reefs are
also subject to anthropogenic activity (such as pollution
resulting in degraded water quality) and phenomena which
cannot yet be classified (such as mass mortality events in the
Caribbean) which slow the rate of calcium carbonate
production. Unfortunately, we can expect growth-limiting
stresses,to become worse on a global and regional basis due to
 .Vtiriortal Heudqlrnrrrrs

 257 Piirk .Avenue South              1873 Connecticur Avc.. N.W.   1403 Arapahoe Avr.   128 East Hargerr St.           IXOO Guadnlupc
 Yew York. .SY 10010                  Washington. DC '00OY          Boulder. CO 80102    Ralcigh. SC 27601              Xubrin. TX 7 3 7 0 1
 (212) ~ O j - 2 I O O                1203) 5X7-3lM)                (.i03) 440-4Y0 I     ( 9 IY) Y21-7793               (j12)47X-51hl

 IOODb PcsI.Ccnsumer Recyclea Paoer
e x p e c t e d i n c r e a s e s i n temperature r e s u l t i n g from g l o b a l
warming ( c o r a l s s t o p producing calcium c a r b o n a t e when t h e y
b l e a c h i n response t o s m a l l i n c r e a s e s i n temperature and a
v a r i e t y of o t h e r f a c t o r s such a s s i l t a t i o n ) and perhaps a l s o
t o i n c r e a s e d f l u x of u l t r a v i o l e t r a d i a t i o n , o r t o changes i n
r a t i o s of UV-A, B , and C which have been demonstrated t o
d e c r e a s e d primary p r o d u c t i v i t y (which d r i v e s calcium c a r b o n a t e
production i n c o r a l s ) i n algae.

          The most prudent p o l i c y , t a k i n g i n t o account t h e n a t u r a l
b a l a n c e between calcium carbonate production and e r o s i o n , t h e
slow growth of c o r a l s a t t h e extremes of t h e i r range, and t h e
f a c t t h a t p o l l u t i o n and g l o b a l environmental problems a l s o
slow o r h a l t growth, i s c l e a r l y t o ban t h e removal of l i v e r o c k
from c o r a l h a b i t a t s . I urge you t o a d o p t t h i s p o l i c y as soon
as possible         -    c o r a l r e e f s need a l l t h e i r working p a r t s i f t h e y
a r e t o s u r v i v e t h e numerous t h r e a t s t o t h e i r i n t e g r i t y t h a t
t h e y p r e s e n t l y f a c e , and c o n t i n u e t o b e p l a c e s o f u n p a r a l l e l e d
b e a u t y , high b i o d i v e r s i t y , and r i c h economic r e s o u r c e s .


Sincerely,                                                                                           -    -




Rodney M. F u j i t a , P ~ . D '
Senior S c i e n t i s t
                                                 st^ K N I G H T S
                                            6 5 5 8 N.    caiiisch
                                                                                 A-
                                                                                 TB                              N0.5b
                                            Fresno. C A Y 3 7 1 U



Aprii     13. 1 9 9 3

HESOLUTION:          To ban c o l l e c t i o n o f r e e f - b u i l a i n q     c o r a i s ana l i v e r o c k

WHEREAS.        1t    t a k e s decades f o r c o u n t i e s s g e n e r a t i o n s o f f r a g i i e . aime-
sized coral             p o l y p s t o b u i i d a s i n g l e c o r a l head -- and c e n t u r i e s t o
b u i i a c o r a i r e e f s . and

WHEREAS. l i v e rock i s c o r a l r e e f S u b s t r a t e o r r u b b l e w l t n a t t a c h e d
marine 1 i f e sucn as sponges.        anemones and s o f t c o r a i s ;         and whereas.
collected     l i v e rock cannot be r e p l e n i s h e d on a b i o l o g i a l time s c a l e ,
as -can a i i o t h e r f isnery resources, and

wHkREAS.         each t i m e a p i e c e o f c o r a l o r l i v e r o c k i s removed f r o m the
reef.       it     i s u n i i k e i y t n a t i t w i l l be renewed i n our c h i l a r e n ' s -- or
o u r g r a n d c n i l a r e n ' s -- l i f e t i m e , and

WHEHkAS.          c o r a i and 1 i v e rocK f o r m a t i o n s p r o v i d e e s s e n t i a l h a b i t a t t o
c o u n t l e s s marine c r e a t u r e s . and wnereas c o n t i n u e d c o l l e c t i o n s e r i o u s l y
d i s r u p t s -- o r even d e s t r o y s    --e n t i r e r e e f microcommunitles. and

WHEREAS. American c o r a l r e e f s and hardbottoms a r e i n t r o u b l e and being
i i t e r a i i y c h i s e i e d away a t ih a i a r m i n g r a t e due t o c o r a i ana i i v e r O C K
collection,

NOW THEREFORE, I T I S RESOLVED by v o t e o f our g o v e r n i n g body:
     ( 1 '1 t h a t . c o r a l ana li v e r o c k c o l l e c t i o n i s m i n i n g rather                    than
              n a r v e s t i n g o f a renewable f i s h e r y r e s o u r c e ,
        ( 2 ' ) t n a t t h e m i c r o h a b i t a t v a l u e o f c o r a l and 1i v e r o c k j u s t i f i e s
                a complete p r o h i b i t i o n on i t s c o l l e c t i o n ,
        i3 I t h a t w e a r e opposea t o any c o l l e c t i o n o f c o r a i o r li v e rock
                w i t h i n s t a t e o r f e d e r a l waters, and
        i 4 ' ) t n a t Uovenor-appointed members of r e g i o n a l F i s h e r y Management
                C o u n c i l s and t h e N a t i o n a l M a r i n e F i s h e r i e s S e r v i c e s h o u l d move
                w i t n o u t d e l a y t o ban t h e c o l l e c t i o n o f r e e f - b u i l d i n g c o r a i s
                and l i v e r o c k w i t h i n f e d e r a l w a t e r s o f t h e U.S. Caribbean,
                West P a c i f i c . Soutn A t l a n t i c and G u l f o f -.Mexico. ,


Sea K n i g n t s
6 5 5 8 N. Cal l i s c h                                             A r l e n wei b e r t , P r e s i d e n t
Fresno. CA 9 3 7 1 ~                                                 A p r i l 13. 1993
                         BRIEFING BOOK ADDITION
                             Petif j on                                            T o t a l number of signatures:   187


        to ban live rock collection
             in coral habitats
          We, t h e u n d e r s i g n e d , r e q u e s t t h a t OUR c o r a l reefs and c o r a l
 h a b i t a t s b e p r o t e c t e d NOW from d e s t r u c t i v e l i v e r o c k c o l l e c t i o n .
           L i v e r o c k c o l l e c t i o n i s mining of r e e f h a r d b o t t o m b u i l t b y
 c o r a l s o v e r hundreds of y e a r s .            I t removes a t t a c h e d m a r i n e l i f e ,
 INCLUDING PROTECTED CORALS. I t d e s t r o y s o r d e g r a d e s t h e v a l u a b l e
 h a b i t a t o f a h o s t o f r e e f c r e a t u r e s . L i v e rock c o l l e c t i o n is t o o
 damaging and c a n n o t b e a d a p t e d t o s t a n d a r d f i s h e r i e s management.
            e
          W ask t h e Governor o f o u r S t a t e and h i s a p p o i n t e e s t o t h e
 S o u t h A t l a n t i c F i s h e r y Management c o u n c i l t o move w i t h o u t d e l a y t o
 ban l i v e r o c k c e l l e c t i o n from a l l South A t l a n t i c c o r a l h a b i t a t s .

S.4YE                              ADDRESS                                              C I T Y I f IP COCE-




                                      Project ReefKeeper
                  16345 West Dixie Highway, Suite 1 121 1 Miami. FL 33160 / (305) 945-4645
                                  - an affiliate of the Amer~canL~RoralSociety -
 Total number of signatures :12                   Resolution         TAWB                        N3.5(2
                                                                                                    -
                              . ban collection of
                             to .
                      reef-butdmg corals

       WHEREAS, it takes decades for countless generations of fragile, dime-sized
                                                    -
coral polyps to build a single coral head and centuries to build coral reefs, and
         WHEREAS, live rock is coral reef substrate or rubble with attached marine life
such as sponges, anemones and soft corals; and whereas, collected live rock cannot be
replenished on a biological time scale, as can all other fishery resources, and
       WHEREAS, each time a piece of coral or live rock is removed from the reef, it is
                                                         -                   -
unlikely that it will b renewed in our children's or our grandchildren's lifetime, and
                       e
      WHEREAS, coral and live rodc formations provide essential habitat to countless
                                                                            -
marine creatures, and whereas continued collection seriously disrupts or even
            -
destroys entire reef microcommunities, and
                                                                                     -       -

         WHEREAS, American coral reefs and hardbottoms are in trouble and being
literally being chiseled away at an alarming rate due to coral and live rock collection,

         NOW, THEREFORE, IT IS RESOLVED by Mte of our governing body:
                        ,d i
              (i)thzt = i zd live red< cc!lection is mining m s r tk!hzwesting of 2
                   renewable fishery resource,
              (2) that the microhabitat value of coral and liw rock justifies a complete
                  prohibition on its collection,
              (3) that we are opposed to any
                  or federal waters, and
              (4) that Governor-appointed
                   Councils and the National Marine Fisheries Service should move
                  without delay to ban the                            corals and live rock
                  within federal waters of the U.S.                   Padfic South
                  Atimtic and Guli of Mexico.                                (\L i)urf3 JeJ




Ehu; f a * . \ ~ - 4 . & A
                       \     \\La.-   d   &%,cd    &A,         $a-         fid&m&        )


Organization Name                                              Authorized signatud
SL\ s,,k           kchLd3             kc Slk.3
Address
Total number of signatures: 3
                         Resolution                                                            ~3.5-
              to protect corals and live rock
                      from collection
         WHEREAS, it takes decades for countless .generations of fragile, dime-sized
  coral polyps to build a single coral head -- and centuries to build coral rhefs, and

         WHEREAS, live rock is coral reef substrate or rubble with attached marine life
  such as sponges, anemones and soft corals; and whereas, collected live rock cannot be
  replenished on a biological time scale, as can all other fishery resources, and

                                                    l
         WHEREAS, each time a piece of c ~ r aor live rock is removed from ihe reef, it is
  unlikely that it will be renewed in our children's -- or our grandchildren's -- lifetime, and

        WHEREAS, coral and live rock formations provide essential habitat to countless
 marine creatures, and whereas continued collection seriously disrupts -- or even
 destroys -- entire reef microcommunities, and
                                                                                           -   -

           WHEREAS. American coral reefs and hardbottoms are in trouble and being
  literally being chiseled away at an alarming rate due to coral and live rock collection,

         NOW, THEREFORE, IT IS RESOLVED by vote of our governing body:
              (1) that coral and live rock collection is mining rather than harvesting of a
                   renewable fishery resource,
              (2) that the microhabitat value of coral and live rock justifies a complete
                  prohibition on its collection,
              (3) that we are opposed to any collection of coral or live rock within state
                  or federal waters, and
              (4) that Governor-appointed members of regional Fishery Management
                  Councils and the National Marine Fisheries Service should move
                  without delay to ban the collection of reef-building corals and live rock
                  within federal waters of the U.S. Caribbean, West Pacific, South
                  Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico.

 Florida League o f Anglers, Inc.
 Organization Name                                          Authorized signature
 P.0.Box 1109                                              M.T.Stoppelbein, Sec./Treas.
 Address                                                   Printed Name and Title
 Sanibel, FL 33957                                           May 23, 1993
 City/State/Zip                                             Date Approved
Total number of signatures: 1 1             Resolution TAB L-
                                                            N8.5&.
                                   t o ban live rock collection
                        in coral habitats of the South Rtlantic
          PiXEREAS, l i v e rock i s coral reef substrate or rubble w i t h
     attached marine life such as sponges, anemones and soft corals, and
     which shelters organisms such a s crabs and shrimps, and
              WHEREAS, each time a piece of live rock is removed from the
     c o r a l ecosystem, it is unlikely that it will be renewed on anything
     other than a geological time s c a l e , and
            WHEREAS, removal of l i v e rock reduces the q u a l i t y and quantity
     o f habitat f o r j u v e n i l e crabs, shrimp, s t a r f i s h , sea u r c h i n s and
     mollusks by reducing the number and complexity of c r e v i c e s and
     a p e r t u r e s which serve a s s h e l t e r , refuge from predators, and
     spawning grounds, and
            WHEREAS,removing fossilized fragments of a coral reef
     compromises the i n t e g r i t y o f the reef's physical structure, and
         WHEREAS, collection of live c o r a l
                         --
                                                          --
                                                      hard corals, fire corals,
                    is emphatically p r o h i b i t e d under gtate and federal
    and s e a f a n s
    laws, yet occurs w i t h great frequency during l i v e rock c o l l e c t i o n ,
            NOW THEREFORE, IT IS HEREBY RESOLVED by vote of our governing
    body:
                     (1) that l i v e rock collection is mining rather than
                           h a r v e s t i n g o f a renewable resource,
                     (2) that        the microhabitat value of l i v e rock justifies
                           a complete prohibition on its c o l l e c t i o n ,
                     ( 3 ) t h a t we are opposed t o any commercial c o l l e c t i o n of
                           l i v e rock w i t h i n state or federal waters, and
                     ( 4 ) t h a t t h e Governor of our S t a t e and h i s appointees to
                           federal Fishery Management Councils should move
                           without d e l a y t o ban l i v e rock c o l l e c t i o n from a l l
                           coral h a b i t a t s within U.S. federal waters, and t o
                           p r o h i b i t t h e landing i n o u r state of live rock
                           collected anywhere within U.S. jurisdiction.


     /91/7/2//b&d/r/3?ER/n7/ddETFdfl
    o r g a n i z a t i o n Name                         ~ u ' t h o r i z e dSignature
                                                          m?iYA ~&$L#I//~//~G&EHE
                                                           PRUIDFZJr
    Address                                              printed Name and T i t l e

                                                           d/8/93
                                                         Date
Total number of s i g n a t u r e s :   336


BRIEFING BOO19                                  mDITIO!i:
                                              i - i ~
                                         Petition
Total number of signatures: 507

                    to ban collection of
                                         TAB3                                            N      -
                                                                                               ,§k

             reef-building corals and live rock
                          in American coral habitats
        American coral reefs and coral hardbottoms are literally being chiseled away at
 an alarming rate due to coral and live rock collection. We, the undersigned, request that
 OUR coral reefs and habitats be protected NOW from this destructive abuse.
        Reef-building corals take decades to produce l i e rock and hundreds of years to
 create reefs. It is very unlikely that coral or live rock removed from the reef system will
                                  -                              -
 be replenished in our children's or even our grandchildren's lifetime.
        This makes coral and live rock collection a meP,miStrable "fishery" that is far
 too damaging to reefs and that destroys valuable habitat for many other reef creatures.       -
        Therefore, we ask the Governor of our State and his appoint-             to regional
 Fishery Management Councils to move without delay to ban coral and live rock
                     l
 collection from d American coral h-      a




                       please return completed petition to:
                                 Project ReefKeeper
                                                  -
                              2809 Bird Avenue S u b 162
                                    Miami, FL 33133
                                                                          TAB                    L .           NC I . 5 3
E3lEFING BOOK ADDITION
                                                                 Keith Black
                                                                 5208 Glen Vista
                                                                 Garland, TX 75044
                                                                 (214) 4954270



   The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Councit                                 .+*          ., .4:%
                                                                                            . 4 % id Q
                                                                     e.
                                                                     >
                                                                     .,
                                                                     ;
                                                                        .-
                                                                          .
                                                                          . c:;
                                                                              ..
                                                                                .
                                                                                       .,   .., % . ..;:
                                                                                             ,
   Atm: Terry Leary
   5401 West Kennedy Blvd.
   Lincoln Center, Suite 33 1
                                                                     .!;-
                                                                      i   . <:
                                                                                    1 3 1954
   Tampa, FL 33609                                                GLTF FiStiERi~s O ~ ~ ; Z ~ L
                                                                                C




   January 1 1, 1994

   Dear Fishery Management Council,
   I am writing this letter in sup-    o
                                       f   the cdlectr'on o Live Ruck from the coastal waters
                                                          f
   of the United States.                                                                                   -   -


   I am not associated with the aquarium industry so I am not bias due to any financial
   benefit.
   I like many others have been enlightened to the importance of the life under the sea by
   having the opportunity to see beautilid aquarium displays. All of the aquarium keepers
   that I know have a love for animal life and are very concerned about the preservation of
   our aquatic environments.
   I advocate limitations and regulations of collection of sea life, but think that a complete
   ban is inappropriate. What most people don't realize is how insigtllficant an effect live
   rock collection has on our oceans when compared to boating, dumping, and the pollution
   and damage that is caused by fishing for food sources.




   My sincere thanks for your consideration,
   Keith Blae)r
                 CHAMPION LIGHTING CO.     -   21 5-836-1 470   - Created:   Thursday, January 13, 1994 1.09 PM - Page 1 o f i -
                               ------ _
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ - - - - - -- - - - - _ - _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ - _ - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

                        EFONG BOOM ADD1
                                                                                                  3
                                                                                              TAB - 3
                CHAMPION LIGHTING & SUPPLY CO.
                    Ice Cap Electronic Ballast                                         1407 BETLEHLEM PIKE
                    VHO Lamps German End Caps                                          FLOURTOWX, PA. 19031
                    ZWAKZ Little Giant Ocean Clear                                     215-233-1630
                    Reef-Filler Neo-Lite Ultra-Lux                                     800-673-7822
                                                                                       215-836- 1470 fax
                FLORIDA LIVE ROCK -ALLI.\NCE

                Dear Sir or Madame,

               Please allow me to add my name to those that are protesting the ban on live rock collection in
               Florida.
               Live rock is a renewable resource, in abundant supply.
               A ban of live rock would serve no purpose, other than putting U.S. collectors out of business, and
               increasing the import of "foreign" live rock.
               As a business that services the Marine Hobby, I can safely say that we are responsible for the
               ongoing employment of over 20 people. Many of those people would be without jobs if the ban o n
               live rock were to be implemented.
               I fully support the efforts to implement the culturing of live rock, in combination with the - -
               continued harvesling by licensed colleclors.

                Sincerely,

                Perry Tishgart

                Champion Lighting & Supply Co.
                                                                                       -

BRIEFING BOOK ADDITIC - -
  Comments to SAFMC on 'live rock' harvest.
                                            TAR^                                NC').5(32)
    January 5, 1994, Savannah, GA

          I have been a diver since 1972. 1 have been diving off the Georgia
    coast since 1980 in part to conduct federally funded research on artificial
    and natural reefs including Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary. Since
    1989 when the marine biology building at SSC was completed, I have
    collected small quantities of 'Georgia variety' live rock from 18-40 nmi
    offshore for instruction and display two 1!%-gal aquaria. Though this live
    rock is not identical to that form Florida, it is biologically diverse, visually
    interesting, and can be maintained and studied for up to several years.

           I recognize the potentially destructive nature of collecting natural
    reefs or live bottom. I know what happens to the biological diversrty and
    character of places at Gray's reef National Marine Sanctuary, for example,.
    that are heavily dived. They look barren in comparison with lesser known
    and dives sites within the Sanctuary. Though it is prohibited at the
    Sanctuary, it is evident that diving has an impact. Divers explore, probe,
    pull, step on, and even collect as souvenirs sea fans and sea whips,
                     c
    clumps of live D -      coral and live rock not realizing that in this
    environment it may take years of decades to replace a large colonies.

           I am not aware of extensive commercial live rock collecting from the
    natural live bottoms or reefs of this area but as traditional sources of live
    rock become unavailable, Georgia live rock could become commercially
    attractive; I do not believe that the supply of existing natural live bottom
    habitat of the inner- and mid-shelf of the South Atlantic Bight (SAB, South
    Carolina to northeast Florida) is extensive enough in to support a
    commercial harvest, even on a limited access basis, without severely
    threatening the quality of the habitat.

          On a more optimistic note, however, though natural live rock is a
   limited resource, live rock in general is, in a very real sense, a renewable
   resource which lends itself to low technology aquaculture and ocean
   farming.

         Reef communities, be they coral, or rock. or artificial develop by a
    constant colonization process. Virtually all of the sessile benthos (the
encrusting the seaweeds and animals that inhabit reefs) arrive as tiny
larvae in the ocean currents and are not very selective about the hard
material on which they choose to settle, grow, and reproduce. Just look at
ship hulls. This is one reason why artificial reefs made out of almost any
solid material. In Georgia in the summer an fall it takes only a matter of
months for the process to produce a turf of animal and plant growth and
only a few years to develop the appearance of a natural live rock reef.

       Low technology maricutture or ocean farming of small artificial reefs
could supply a demand for live rock and provide a new, non-destructive,
environmentally friendly industry in the area. I suspect that the biological
differences between SAB and south Florida live rock might be appealing or
eminently marketable to the aquarium trade. I would even go as far as
propose a cooperative research project in this area to investigate its
potential. The Coastal Resources Division, GA DNR , the Sea Grant
College Program, the Southeast Fisheries Center, NOAA, and of course -
Savannah State College.

To summarize:

      I think that I would speak for a majority of divers in this area if I said
that we've got natural live rock here and we would like it to stay here.
However, like little artificial reefs, rock can be make 'live' through
mariculture and ocean farming wrth no negative impact on marine
resources or the environment and with potentially significant economic
benefds.


Matthew R. Gilligan, Ph.D.
Professor
Department of Biology and Life Sciences
School of Sciences and Technology
Savannah, Georgia 31404

P.0. Box 20325
(912)356-2809
(91 356-2996F A X
   2)
                                                        165 N E 130 St.,
                                                        North Miami, F1 33161
                                                        January 14, 1996

Terry Leary
The Gulf O f Mexico Fisheries Management Council
~incoln Center                                                                                   -     ..
                                                                                                     . . .. . .
                                                                                                                   :
                                                                                                                       . *'..
                                                                                                                  "'-' ',-
                                                                                                                             ,


Suite 331                                                                     >   -,:,   :-.,;
                                                                                                        i 4



5401 West Kennedy Blvd.,
Tampa, FL 33609
                                                                          1
                                                                                         :
                                                                                         .
                                                                                                 1 4 I*:!         .
                                                                                                                  .
                                                                                                                  d          ?



Dear M r . Leary,

       I   am writing you i n reference to t h e Liverock issue. Having been a marine

aquarium hobbyist for the past six years, and a member of t h e Florida Marine

Aquarium Society for f i v e years, i a concerned about the r e g u l a t k n s that are
                                       m

forthcoming and t h e f a c t t h a t t h e interest o the commercial harvesters are being
                                                      f
                                                                                                                                    -   -
inclcrded w i t h that of thr hobbyists.   As   a hobbyist,   I   would like to see t h a t our
interectc are been conaidered.      I have   no problomo w i t h roguloting L i v e r o c k as

long as hobbyist     are given equal access tio the resource.
       I hope that t h e decisions that the council makes w i l l     be based on f a c t f and

not on t h e interest of a few, and that they are pragmatic and fair.                                                        Your

consideration w i l l be greatly appreciated.




                                                             - -
                                                   Sincerely yours,


                                                      /g/-&?/-/y-.-
                                                         Bryan A. Williams
                                                                                                                         --
                                                                                                                             -
BRIEFING BOOK ADDITIG:??
 Q Q U ~ T I CRE.:EiiRCH     TECH        TEL NO.54:          7966




     AA              )
               Council Members
                                  AQUATIC RESEARCH
                                  TECHNOLOGIES, INC

               South Atlantic Fishcry Management Council
                                                                                                              FAX
                                                                                                        January 5 ,   1994




               One Page
               Regarding: Proposed management of Live Rock

                          Members,
               Dcar Coc~ncil
                    Our company niariitfactures acrylic aquariums for a worldwide market. Many ot our
               dquarlums and filtration systems are designed exfrrcssly for reef kccpinq applications. Many of
               our cusronleri dcwnd on the avililbility of affordable l rock to maintain existing systems, and
                                                                           k
               tne creatton of rrew cxhibits. Due to ttic growth and development of filtration and ligtiting
               rcchnologles. rr\any nlore spcvics of m n n e life can now be successfully kcpt in captivity. WJI,
               ttlrough our experiences. wc have found that to keep trlort of these spcctes, a certan amottnt
               of livc rock nccds to bc infroduccd into Mcrr cmwronmmt. Many species of marine fish now
               kcpt in captivity, which naturally 'graze- on live rock supplements, will not be successfully kept
               If the n x k is clirninatcd from thcir closed environment.
                    Tnro~~gh   llurncrous cwcrsafims with collectors, and actualty joining scvcrsl dlves myself,
               the rubble rock which they are colkcting IS not even part ot the reef. ..Thepieces which thy
              are collcaing are fragments which, through tidal and storm actions, tme bmkc away from the
               permanent rock stri~htrczs.A piecc of W b b k rock may bc there orw day, and gonc the next
              due to storms and ctlrmlts., Thc NIIWII~ of rock Collected is not endangering the existance of
              thc reef or it's eco.systcm. Ifyou arc truly C O f K C t ? M with m g the reef, stop the pollution of
              t17~                                       f.
                    wdtcr systcms which feed the ms Thc! threat ot cnemkal conramlnation and death at a
              reef Is a t ~ greater danger to tha environment man all of the rock cdlecting combined.
                              r
                   AqUartumS are e d u ~ ; r O ~Tncy inform and teach people, people who might never be
                                                    ~l.
                                                                                                      s
              cxposed to the underwater world, about the complexity and diwrslty of the ~ . f and oceans.
              Thcy brlng up close and in person, cpatures which inspirr, curiosity and exploration in the
              m~nds our young people. They teach rcspcct and rcrponlbiky tor the lifeforms whkh Inhabit
                      of
              our reefs and means. By takbg away live a t k as a component for creating the closed
              envirorlmtnt of an aquarium. you damage thc ability of the aquarium to be an effrtcrivc
              lcirrnlng tool of the K T yo11pmtcss to savc.
                                             ~
                   The decisiori you nlakc now, will ccruinly impact our busiricss in a negative manner. It will
              rnost certainty destroy the livlihmcl d thousands of mall businesses w h i c h make thcir living
              from the trading in marine species. It will most ccnainly diminate a vakri~blc     awarerless and
              cducatioml tool for milliom of people. espccmlly llie y w n g and Inquisitive. The knefifs of
              halting live rock collection arc vague and ~~nwbstanciated. b n The certain damages of
                                                                                at c .
              halting live rock collection are clearly cvident.




                                                                    Todd F! Beal, ~wsidcnt
                                                                    AquatK Resewn Tectwwloglcs, Inc.


                  200 PEA(.( Z i 'K 1:IRIVE   rn     W A L V A Y I 1')l.RlRIAL I"V?K
                                                                 N                         I-(JLTCJN. MO (!:r)%!) 1
                                   TELI.tVK>NE     ( 314) 642-7777            FAX i.314) 642-7066
    JAt4-E-1394    3        RON      GQUGF! I UM   GOURMET



                         LIFE SUPPORT LIFELINE
                                            1841 North GI&y St. #P
                                             San Pedro, CA .go731
Phone: 310 832-9981                         1 900 28&CURE                                    Far: 310 832-9982



                                                   MEMO
TO: South Alantic Fishery Managment Council                                          Jan 5, 1994


RE: Florida Live Rock collection .

                                                                                                   -   -

The proposed regulations Ms the managanent d i v e rock collection wiil be sure to have a negative impact on
nrlr b~~lsinesa. c providc hclp and advisc to aquatic hobbyicste thru our "900" phonc scrvicc. O r callers an
               W                                                                                u
lnrgcly {over 50%) hnhhyicm with rcdnquariums, n very lnrgc n~~rnber these tire Florid. live mck. These
                                                                         of
hobbylcnr an u 8 q domatic rock due to it8 nuonrble pnec and avlihbiliry. Any closure or regulation that
wol~id impact the s~apply this renewable z#K)Wta will have a ncgitivt impact thousands of hobbyists all over
                         of
the United States and CannAa Without the reef hobbyle~ts service will lose a large portion of our voiume.
                                                           our
We hope that you will take these points under consideration.


                                                                     Lifb Support Lifeline

                                                                     Marion Wolf
BRIEFlb!G BOOK ADDITI?i$,                                                                            ,
                                                                                                     ,5        (34
     JRN-05-1994 20: 0':      FROM   AQURRIUII GOURMET               TO              17i8Si45r781    P .a1




TO: South Alantic Fishery Managment Council                                           Jan 5 , 1994


RE: Florida Live Rock collection .

We arr: in the Livc Rock Tranship Business 80% of thc mck we h d l c comes &om thr state bf ~lohda!Any
regulation that would bavc e ncgitivc impact on the supply of this valuablc rcncwabie resource will have a
 nnjor ndveme          on ow bus-.      Wc shrp to reailnu all over the United State any interruption in the
.upply of re(~son~b1y domwtic rook will have a naghive @ad on theu sales volume. Please take into
                       priced
account the k n p a ~down the linc that a shut down of live rock collection will cause.
                     t




                                                                  Best Regards


                                                                  Carl C. Crawford
 BRIEFING BOOK ADDITIGN
From: Dondd Aha* To: Florida l i n rock .Ili.ncw       D.c.: 1
                                                             -   Tim: 09:2337


                                                                                        -L
                                                                                                                  Page 1 of   1


                                                                                TAB      N                0.5i37)

                                                   F. Donald Ahee, Jr.
                                                   3 90 1 East Broadway Blvd.
                                                     Tucson. Anzona 8 5 7 1 1
                                                          (60212 3 - 5 122
                                                           Fax 323-3156




             Florida Li1.e Rock .illiance
             P.O. Bos 202
             Summerland Key. FL 55042

             I-ia facsimile

             Dear Rockers:

            -I wish to support eiforts to insure the live rock harvesting rights of collectors in Fedenl waters. I
             understand these issues are under consideration 'by several fishen management organizations. and that
            these organizations are under hen?/ pressure tiom radical groups to totally ban marine collection.

             Please fas me information t h t I can use to lobby in favor of managed hanesting and aquaculture. I would
             appreciate info on:

            1. \lThich of these organizations to contact by fax
            2. \ I h t to say that would be most effective
            7. !\%ether or not I should contact my Congressional reps
            4. . b y other actions I should take.




            Thank you.



            Don .ihee. Jr.



            plfda 006hIJ
                                H o w . H o w &E s o - ~
                                                                                  TAR K N O ~ ~
                                       - A                   ATUW
                                        .    o   l   w   u    ~ I L   Y   ~   ~



D A m PAUL -AN.
=WARD    W
         m
~ F W -E mt7XN-m
                    -L
                   Pr
                   PA.
                         ~-AS
                                                                                            --
                                                                                       P A X (Dde




              I r e g e t tbat I am unable t attend the
                                           o                   on
                                                             tbe Live RocltiPsue rn
        behalfofmyckut, theLiveRockAnisnct,butIappdatcthat appmmitytu providemy
        mpnt by co-•




              ~ h n t i s a n i m p r s g i ~ s l b t d M M u & a a d ~ ~ t h L ~ j ~
                      .t
        a f a n y f r z. r r r e ~ e ~ ~ ~ y o u s r s ~ a ~ a t t b i r ~ a b h o
                                d                           .
        m a j o r i t y o f a~n ~ ~ w c r e n c c p i t e d W h c m h i g h A ~ ~
        aressnttotbGse~~~that"AararicancQralr8cfsarrddbard~
        ~irr~andbeing~Ehippeda;wayasaaabrmin$ratsbto~andfivsrocL
        Ennrmiamnand~~tothars~tion8alaqewiththcrequcsttbattht
        r ~ b e r ~ a n t b e ~ ~ t b S ' s ~ , k b ~ l p t b a t d t o
                                          a ~
        h u g m s h r t t o f ~ n f s o f H l~ a p c W I o p r w h i e h r e q P e s t c d m g
        ~ m t o ~ ~ w ~ ~ d ~ ~ , I ~ ~ i t ~ l y ~ a r I a m
        d t h e l i r c r a c k d k t o r s a n d ~ ~ I r c ~ w The-bthatthe
                                                                ~ u l d
        bcsf sciu&c i n k m a t h avaiIable  gpy Wkatc that a prohdbitlooa o live rack
                                                                            f
        c o k t i n n k ~
              ~ a x h a ~ ~ a b D r . H e P x y k F ~ \ r r h o b a l r l r a ~ d
        in Mari# Biobgy, and bar thirrprevm (37) pcan erpsrisaa in thc marinc lib M x q ,
        srtab~thtlasillgMO~dmetpsrprr~tbs~rideoftbsFloridr.~
        ~muldfoMawparrxnt(1%)oftbetotal~hard~every209Q88yean.
                                                                                        oya
        H i r ~ ~ r h a r t b a t ~ a l ~ ~ ( S % ) a o u Y l t r l P s a r a r l p p OThayhm
        o t h a ~ b m @ t o r r o c k h . P ~ " r ~ t e b d ~ e r o c L ~ h
        amount d m f e hard ~ i s n o t r e ~ s u b j a c t t a d i r p u t t .
Januazy 6, 1994
Page   2




       One o the main prohhm with this pertinrhr fssuc is that many o the penanr,
            f                                                           f
tnv~withthe~~~havemir-~~Prrtrerttbe~BockUliana
is-          livcrock&inWa-breaaruce"aod-Dr.JamerkBahnracS
Marine Biologist fix the N a t b d Ocu& axd            AfkUtsadan,mW
point. ( S a a h . ~ s c m a p m & m ~ ~ 1 9 9 0 t o N b c r t C J a n e s ) The.
M e r o c k c o m ~ w v s r v a r t ~ d ~ b r n r t r d t b C ~ q f l i P e ~
is a wry selective p e a s . We have sta!ed previously tbat m e could d   . a rubble
       '-jintosev#al~~dCdaeCtOmly~~ofthacarearandft~
b c ~ i m p o s s i b l e f o r ~ t o ~ a n Tnrenrbhlerodwhkh    y ~ w ~ .
i s w h a i t h e ~ R o c k ~ i s ~ t h t ~ ~
rcsmce. I t i r ~ ~ t u n r c d o v c r , b u r i c d , r m r x r v e r a d , a n d ~ b y t b a
actiaaoftbeelcmma J n A r r u l . i f ~ g t l b C a ~ ~ ~ r ~ t d ~ r n ~ d w h c n t h e
rrctibnofs&mmand~araattheitpeekandthtNbWcrma.heuinro~d
                  r
c m m m i t k Ib D . Feddem bar painted ou& rubble IocL ramavrrl can 8ctwQ be-
~tocaral.Irtm;.attn~thehrru!~wfdCbareEhlllMlarcmb)ectmtbiL
a m s t a n t ~ a n d , ~ n o t m i t a b l e d P P a u a l ~ ~ a ~ r O c L
tPrfacserrporsdmIightcmd~(drtetormrovald~rocft)dbcamus
a p . m p r i 4 t e h a b i n u f i c a c a r d ~ ~ t h c r e m ~ ~ a n d ~ ~
      p .
                           T
co~byotherorgsnimg h s ~ t h a t t b e ~ a d l i v e r o d r d e p a e t a s ~
~ t b b b O t t ~ m a f t h e f o a d ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ a n d ~ o b n l p a e ! i n t
Inaline-
      Thereis~lbtaa~~fn~atthis~wbtdrwoufdallawtbiam
b e a c \ a r e s t m Thmghthemambanobthe~RocL~wiacoopcraeewith
t h e ~ i n a n y w a y t o p c o v i Q ~ ~ 0 0 ~ r P c l r ~ a n d t h e
v i a b i l i t y d a ~ ~ i n t b a f r r t u t e , q p r ~ ~ ~ t i a a d t b c t i v r : d
tiohery~takcintoacoMmttba#droftbepec@e~cnpnolcdinthtfinhery.
We6#1httheecanos3icmqbammMbeeneluut.+rutimnt&bytbt
~ ~ a a d ~ c a n ~ ~ t h n t t b e ~ m c m h c r r d ~ m t ~ t h e l O I O
lidhod, A s N O A A ' r o w n M a r i n e B h & k t , D r . J ~ A ~ h r r r ~ " I ~
agee that live rock is a mwabk nmtmx and that u#ne levlel ofharvest is pmbdy
8ccept&k9 A n o b ~ ~ o b t h e i r r u e w i n k a d y o u t o ~ d n o t
probibftioaand~imnknr.tbit~mcmbtn~to~~beredan~
~ b a t m h i n f ; b r a P e d p u b t i c r e n t i m e n tThemcmacrsoftheLjveRocLAltiana~
                                                             .
~ ~ W r a t L b o e d u c a t e t h e p u b l i c s b o r r t o u r ~ ~ a r a d
~ w i t h t b ~ t o t b a t t oT h c ~ a r e ~ w i t h y e t ~
                                                        d
opport\llliryto~nkwithascgmcnt~tbc~d~irrstcadof~an
&rsaridft-,*mrrtatr.web-hWmatttr.
                                     -9




                                     L    4klS

                                                  .
                                           ARD W HORAN
                                     For the Firm
  Dear Council Members,

           P l e a s e allow m e t o e x p l a i n how our f a m i l y and business
rely on the collection of Live Rock. Our company (SEA-LECTIVE
COLLECTIVE)has been collecting Live Rock for ovar 6 years in a
manner, which we feel, is in good rotation. We do not c o l l e c t
i n t h e same area week a f t e r week, we collect in over 15 different
locations throughout the year. Our collecting schedule consists
of one day par week. In that one d a y , we generate enough income
to cover 75% our- business aver-head. With out L i v e Rock sales
each week, our business w i i l not b6 able to s t a v b b o v e water"
financially.                                                                        .-
         Xe have just recently bought a new home, which of
cou'rse createsmany nor birrs every aonth, insurance, t a x e s ,
etc...   We rely on our Live Rock sales not only to pay our
business over-head and expenses, but also t o support our f a m i l y
and well being. We have a College Pund for lfmo. old daughter,
and with out Live Rock sales, we will never be able to pay a
College payment each month. It i s friqhtening to think of ali
t.he other bills w e w i l l not be able to pay i f o u r li~elyhood
i s taken from us. W e also have 4 full-time empioyees who rely on                       .
our business to pay their salaries each week; with-out Live Rock
sales we would not be a b l e t o pay our employees who play a
major role in the operation and success of our business.
        We believe that collecting procedures need to be de-
legated t o licensed collectors who will c o i l a c t with-in the
regulated guide-lines. Collecting techniques are sometimes
mis-interpretated, dynamite, explosives, etc.... are not
practiced; what ve collect is LOOSE "rubble rock."

          Hopefully,we can all come up with laws and regulations
that w i l l benefit both t h e pros and cons o f this t o p i c .
                           Thank-you for your time,




                                                ive Collecti-ge
                           owner- % e a - ~ e c t

cc Gulf of Mexico Fishery
   Management Council
December 1, 1 9 9 1
A d d i t i o n a l arguments s u p p o r t i n g t h e continued h a r v e s t of l i v e
rock:
Primary S u b j e c t : Numbers
Overview: I n a l l of t h e arguments p r e s e n t e d by r e g u l a t o r s and
environmental g r o u p s , t h e r e i s one t h i n g n o t i c e a b l y a b s e n t :
numbers.
FMLA f e l t t h a t t h e r e had t o be a r e a s o n s o we s t a r t e d g a t h e r i n g
t h e numbers o u r s e l v e s . This d a t a a c q u i s i t i o n answered t h e
q u e s t i o n a s t o why no one from t h e o p p o s i t i o n e v e r used
s t a t i s t i c a l d a t a : I t d i d n ' t s u p p o r t t h e i r condemnation of l i v e
rock h a r v e s t .
Our a n a l y s i s of t h e d a t a i n d i c a t e s t h a t , / e v e n if a l l of the h a r d
bottom and r u b b l e found on t h e w e s t c o a s f i s n o t i n c l u d e d , t h e
Keys a l o n e , o n l y from Miami t o Key West, c o n s i d e r i n g o n l y t h e
ocean s i d e , l o s i n g 300 t o n s of rock p e r y e a r , would l o s e o n e -
p e r c e n t of t h e t o t a l a v a i l a b l e hard bottom t o rock h a r v e s t e v e r y
2090.88 y e a r s . Removal of f i v e p e r c e n t would t a k e 1 0 , 4 5 4 . 4 y e a r s .
These numbers do n o t even t a k e i n t o account t h e g e n e r a t i o n of new
rock by t h e v a r i o u s calcium f i x i g p r o c e s s e s > a s demonstrated b y
                                                    1
t h e samples we've brought today. Too, i t i s known t h a t i n many
a r e a s t h e e x i s t i n g l i m e s t o n e s h e f is thousands of f e e t t h i c k .
There is n o t even an e s t i m a t e of how d e e p r u b b l e p i l e s can be b u t
i t i s known t h a t t r e a s u r e s a l v a g e o p e r a t i o n s have blown holes i n
t h e s e a f l o o r e i g h t e e n f e e t d e e p i n some p l a c e s without ever
r e a c h i n g t h e bottom of t h e d e p o s i t e d l o o s e r o c k s . Even though i t
i s u n r e a l i s t i c t o assume t h a t l i v e r o c k h a r v e s t w i l l be around so
f a r i n t h e f u t u r e , I ask you t o c o n s i d e r how d i f f e r e n t t h e world
w i l l be two thousand o r t e n thousand y e a r s from now. The
g e o l o g i c a l s c i e n c e s community e s t i m a t e s t h a t e l e v e n thousand
y e a r s ago t h e s e a l e v e l was between 300 and 600 f e e t lower t h a n
i t i s now ( D r . Raymond F. M c A l l i s t e r , FAU, p e r s o n a l
communication). What is now t h e s e a f l o o r i n q u e s t i o n was dry
upland. I n t e n thousand y e a r s most l i k e l y i t w i l l be a g a i n .
P l e a s e remember t h a t t h e s e d e t e r m i n a t i o n s do n o t even c o n s i d e r
any of t h e Gulf of Mexico.
We   p r o v i d e you w i t h t h e s e numbers i n s p i t e of t h e f a c t t h a t t h e y
appear r i d i c u l o u s . Upon h e a r i n g them i t ' s hard n o t t o laugh a t
how e x a g g e r a t e d t h e y sound. The c o l d r e a l i t y is t h a t t h e y a r e n o t
e x a g g e r a t e d ; t h i s i s t h e way i t i s , and t h e o p p o s i t i o n has
avoided t h e i s s u e l i k e t h e p l a g u e . Why? Because t h e l i v e rock
h a r v e s t e r s have been o f f e r e d up a s a p o l i t i c a l pawn by t h e
government of t h i s s t a t e t o appease t h e now powerful, even i f nor
w e l l informed, e n v i r o n m e n t a l g r o u p s .
There i s an o l d s a y i n g : "There a r e l i e s , damn l i e s and
s t a t i s t i c s . " For t h i s r e a s o n w e a r e p r o v i d i n g , f o r t h e s c r u t i n y
of a l l , o u r e n t i r e d a t a s e t as w e l l as t h e methodology behind
                  ,   .
harvests what is recognized as a biologically insignificant
amount of hard coral. Live rock harvest involves the removal of
1/2088th of a square mile of 3 inches of bottom per year. Each
rock specimen is carefully examined by the harvester in an effort
to avoid the taking of any hard coral. The live rock fishery is
worth several millions of dollars without even considering the
side industries that it supports. To say that our efforts present
an environmental hazard of any significance is ludicrous. So now,
what do we have? We have a valuable fishery that harvests a
biologically insignificant amount of hard coral. Just as with
scallops and other fisheries, the accidental harvest of tiny
amounts of hard corals is not so substantial as to warrant
destroying the rock collector's livelihood by killing this
industry. Such action would reek of discrimination and would do
nothing to "save the reef". Only the industry, the state, and the
country would suffer. When our data proves out, and it wili, send
the message back upstairs that you're here to manage fisheries
responsibly, not use them as political pawns.

Data Analysis
Assumptions :
1. It is estimated that there are approximately 162 square miles
of hard bottom in the Keys from Miami to Key West seaward of the
overseas highway out to a line that generally follows the 60 foot
isobath. This calculation was derived by Henry Feddern using
existing government maps of the hard bottom areas of the Florida
Keys. Jennefer Wheaton reviewed the calculations and concurred
that the methodology was valid. Information concerning these
numbers can be obtained from Jennefer Wheaton, DNR-FMRI.
2. The average thickness of harvested live rock is three inches.
All calculations assume that all harvested specimens are mashed
into uniform thickness with internal voids similar to the thirty
test samples.
3. Calculations by Henry Feddern, acknowledged by Jennefer
Wheaton, estimate that of the 162 square miles of hard bottom, 57
square miles represent living coral. reef which is not available
for live rock harvest. It is felt that inclusion of this 57
square miles is valid for two reasons:
             .
      (1) The time frame versus percentage of stock removed is
          sufficiently long so as to assume that the areas o f
          live growth will change over time thus, i n the
          theoretical but unlikely event that live rock harvest
          will continue that far into the future, these areas
          from time to time mqst likely will become available
          while others become unavailable.
       (2)   .   All calculations assume absolutely no recruitment of
                 new material. Coral areas, without question are
it's development. FMLA, as a representative of the marine life
fishery, has been working with the Fisheries Commission since the   /
fall of 1989. In that time, through cooperation between our
group, the MFC, DNR and other agencies, this fishery has gone
from no management whatsoever to one with a detailed
comprehensive management plan. Without the aforementioned
cooperation this would not have been possible. There is not one
person in this room who can honestly say that in that time, FMLX
has ever given you false information. Never once have we
exaggerated the level of certainty of the information we have
provided, be it theoretical or known fact. Every statement has
carried with it this qualification. At no time have we sworn
something to be taken as absolute certainty that wasn't. This
approach to fishery management is why we have come so far so
fast, and we are not about to compromise that "prime directive"
for the sake of live rock or anything else. Given these FMLX
statement qualifications we are telling you now that the current
level of live rock harvest will not result in the deleterious
side effects for the reef ecosystem that are claimed by the
opposition; opposition that has refused to do their homework and
carry their research beyond vague generalities and arguments no
more or less valuable than if uttered by an Iowa corn farmer.
                                                           -   -

We know our claims are correct and we not only suggest, we demand
that the government agencies and environmental groups condemning
rock harvest run the numbers themselves. The measurement and            1
mathematical determinations took us one afternoon. We don't think
it's asking too much to demand that our detractors do the same.
They will find that we are telling the truth, and until such time
as this data is in, no doubt bastardized by the opposition to the
degree that they think they can get away with, we ask that no
restrictive decisions be made.
To that end we ask you to consider the following points:
1. Without even acknowledging the existence of the vast rock
supplies along the Gulf Coast or replacement by calcification.,
our industry harvests 1/2090th of one percent of the surface
standing stock per year. Therefore, reduction of the standing
stocks of "Complex organisms and habitat, rubble zones etc." as
"issues", as stated by Ms. Cranmore, loses it ' s significance-.
2. Contrary to what Ms. Cranmore's paperwork would lead you to
believe, the harvest of a by-catch of hard corals is allowed in
the federal fishery'management plan for several fisheries, most
notably, scallops. Remember that since the state has already
prohibited rock harvest in state waters, we are already talking
about federal waters. Consider that scallops are harvested with
trawls, dragging over large areas of bottom. The amount of coral
caught in the trawls is not known, but considering the large
areas covered, it is substantial. The catch is left unsorted
until the vessel returns to shore whereupon all non-targeted        A

items, including hard coral, are thrown away. Why is this
allowed? Because scallops represent a valuable fishery that
             generating new substrate. This generation, added t o
             calcification by calcareous algae, tube worms and
             other organisms, present in various amounts throughout
             the entire hard bottom of the Keys, should adequately
             offset substrate loss due to biological, chemical and
             physical erosion. The year to year net gain or loss of
             substrate due to these processes are hard to determine
             but, given the minute percentage removed by live rock
             harvest, can be considered to be unaffected by our
             activities.
4. The use of 30 live rock samples provided by three different
harvesters taken from different areas is adequate for the
determination of an average specific weight for live rock in
general.
5. Rock samples varied in weight from just over one pound to just
over eleven pounds. It is felt that these were sufficient in size
to generate accurate density values. Other researchers may wish
to carry this further by using still larger samples.
Other Points:
1. All calculations consider the standing stock to include only
the first three inches of hard bottom/rubble. The total supply,
which consists of all available limestone, regardless of buried
depth is omitted.
2. No doubt the opposition will try to bring forth arguments that
suggest that the standing stocks are smaller than our estimates
or that some natural erosion process is more substantial than we
believe. In the event such arguments are presented we remind
everyone that the remaining hard bottom areas should be added
back into the calculations. These area include all hard bottom
west of Key West to the Dry Tortugas, a distance of greater than
sixty miles, and north to the panhandle. Once this is done, any '
such arguments become insignificant.
Procedure:
1. Thirty rock samples were used in the determinations. Each
sample was submerged in water to determine exact volume by
displacement.
2. Since all calculations of rock harvest have dealt with the wet
weight, the samples were also weighed while wet.
3. From these measurements were determined the density, specific
weight and specific volume of each sample. Averages were
determined for each of the three sample groups, with the highest
averages used for analysis. From these statistics, and the State
estimate of a 300 ton annual harvest and the 162 square mile
estimate of available hard bottom within the stated geographic
boundaries, was the attached table of calculations derived. It
includes the above mentioned items as well as total volume, area
a t three inch depth, conversion units etc.
Sarpier   vaiuae 100 tonr\cu. ft. l cube airensionlftl cubic yards
FeaCern
5arpiel        Voiurt~ul          Yelght 11bs-or] Yeigntlot~      Cieightig)    speclvoiure~rilq) rptcjit(qlri) voiurt j00 coat ~ r i l
   dern
   1                       1250                          71          2211.22                 .57           1.77         153818118.92
   i                       1110                          dl          4296.27                  53           1.90         111409301. (0
   J                        775                          57          1615.89                 .41           2.09         130518041.39




                                                               Averages:                     .51            1.35        117635606 .:l




Barqer
   1      .'               1200       1-12               76          2154.52                 .56            1.80        151580952.55
   2                        500       2-6                31          1077 -26                .46            2.15        126317460.38




                                                               Averages:                     -56            1.80        152229451.14

Quarry
                                                                                                                                 -
Conversions:

            1 !b equais                       16   st   equais              153.59 grars

            1   32.   equais               2 8 . 3 grars

         300 tons equals                  600000 pounds equals          21215(000 grarr
                                                                                                                        -
            1 foot equais                  .3048 aeters equals               30.48 :entimeters

           ; :u. foot eauais               .I283 cu. I equals            28316.95 11
                                                                                                                            --


?erceataae a f standiag stock in the Florida Xeys harvested:

Yotal c s t i r a t e of hard botton areas in Florida Keys: 162 square a i l e s

162 square s i l t s equals          4516300800 square f e e t

300 tons bf l i v e rock equals 100 cubic pards equals                        5100 cubic f e e t
                                                                                                                -   -
Averzge thicxness si l i v e rock s a l p i e s harvested equals I inches

T o t i l i r e a covered a? j00 cons a t 3 inch chichess:                   11600 square f e e t

11630 square f e e t per year equals                     .0007718 square r i l e s

.0057748 square ~ i l e sy u a l s 111290th of a square r i l e
                                                                                                                                 -
21603 square f e e t equais            .0004783 percent of t o t a l hardbattor

A current harvest with no recruitrent considered, harvest of one percent
  t
                 hardcottor in the Keys aione o i l 1 require
:f ~ a i i i n l e                                            7090.i8 pears

Sarvest :i f i v e percent :orrent standinq stock will require                                 10151.40 years
- - A [ !ant !c F ~ s t - \ e rrlanaqement Coi~tjcl!
LL,i)gtr!                       ;~
                                   te
One Southpark ~ i r c l e , ' ~ u l306
Charleston, South Carolina 29407-4694
                                                                         DEC 3 0 1993
RE: Amendment to the FMP t o add " l i v e rock"                       SOUTH ATLANTIC FISHERY
                                                                        MANAGEMENT COUNCIL

First. I would llke t o thank you for attempting t o handle the Issue or ")l\fe
rock:" l n a professional manner. In the past we have endured actions of a
thf&?-flnged circus. I t i s a nice change to have a fairly impartial draft
concernlrrq "live rock" marraqement However, i t was sad t o see the State
                 ;~
of ~ l o r l d a drummed up statements were used aaaln Such a s ' t h e YO
percent of ilve rock examlned at the request of enforcement agents                              -
contained vlsible colonies of prohibited coral." The trtlth i s that the
detalned rock whlch was a few pieces out of hundre& o f pounds cr?ntalrlerj
coral How the State came up w i t h 90 percent i s s t i l l a mystery. "The
estmtatea anclount of 3 tons of live rock leaving thru Miaml daily," S t a t g
by the Florlda Marlne Patrol 1s completely out of line; orders are weighed
toqether by air carqo Therefore t h l s statement of estimated amounts are
untrue. Both of these statements as w e l l as many others are misleading
and cloud the entire rock' issue.

As collectors there are major differences between the West and the East
coast. marine l i f e . We feel i t i s very important t o continue t o have
different regulating councils! Separate views allow f o r area regulation
development that w i l l provide a f a i r management rule t o protect small
business and the environment alike. To combine this type of decision
would be like giving your money to a gambler and asking them to invest it
for your future.

Redefinition of Allowable Octocorals needs t o have dimensions of
substrate holdfast, such as not to exceed 2 inches. Depending on
collection areas some Octocorals can be collected w i t h l i t t l e t o r70
substrate, while other areas need to allow a small amount of substrate
 to ach~eve harvest of a healthier product
            the

First consideration for manayement of "live rock" should be the
                of
~mplementation limited access. This should carry over to any
aquaculture site i n State or Federal waters. Thls would allow f o r a
control led amount of collectors u n t l l the rules take effect.
          CQL117Cll~prPr?t-t-ed (?l?t!y
The r:.l~lf                                                    contlnuea harvesr
                                                  C.2 t o a1 IOW
                                                     t)                                        il!r
a l~mited     time and to provide llve rock fishermen the means to convert t o
dquaculture This 1s an example of a f a l r and impartial vlew ot' the "llve
rock" fishery I t was a shame to read the South Atlantic's preferred
optlonson C 2 a , a n d o n D 1 O p t i m u m Y ~ e l d ( O Y ) s h o u l d b e n o l e s s t h a n
outllned under D 2 , which i s compatible w ~ t h   Alternative C 2 b Option
@ I , W I l l result i n a significant economic impact on a substantial number
of small busines entlties East coast collectors sald they would not be
given a cnance t o stay i n busmess and now the S A. may prove them
correct

AS a small buslness ent.ity who's income i s based on the col l e c t ion of 1 ive
rock from the West coast, 1 t i s very important t o work w l t h the counclls
so that provisions are granted t o harvest w i l d rock unti 1 aquaculture can
be obtained. Exemption f o r the removal of coral that w i l l attach t o the
aquaculture product m u s t be provided, such as the exemption used ! the -
                                                                          n
offshore petroleum extract ion.

Permitting w i l l require addltional paperwork and funding for the
regulating agency personnel. Because of the paperwork reduction act and
the fact that funds are close t o non-existent, how do w e over come this
problem'?

C.4.a One optlon i s t o have one permit under l i m i t e d access management.
I f a person does not attempt t o obtain a aquaculture p e r m i t before closure
of w i l d harvest, then they f o r f e i t t h e ~ place on the l i m i t e d access l l s t
                                                     r
whicn w 1 1 1 then l i m i t harvest to persons w i t h authorized aquaculture
operations. Additionally, collectors should contlnue t o hold a current
Saltwater product license(SPL) w i t h the ML(Marine Life) and
RS(Rest r l c t e d Species) endorsements and be reauired t o report &                l
catches from state and federal waters by using the identifying area code
number.(Area code i s already possible w i t h the t r i p t i c k e t reporting.)
Separate information could then be compiled by the t r i p ticket aqencv
u n t i l closure period i s i n e f f e c t or continue the reporting requl~emerits          so
more information can be gathered on marine l i f e and t h e i r collecting
areas.

C.4.b. Possession of a notarlzed copy, while i n possesslon of rock, o f the
authorized aquaculture operation along w i t h current 1 im ited access
permit, SPL, ML and RS endorsements should separate aquaculturalists
from illegal harvesters. The l i m i t e d access permit could include and
specify the a1lowance of prohibited coral on aquacul tured live rock.

C.4.c. I'm not sure how t o overcome t h l s addi tional permit unless i t can be
worded t o include "1 ive rock" t o the current permitting system f o r
scientific, educational, and restoration purposes.

Concerning the 1 ive rock fishery value of about $628,000.00-this figure
seems t o be incorrect. We are currently gathering tnformat ion f r o m rock'
collectors t o provide a more accurate value figure. We hope to have this
information for you by the f i r s t meeting's date.

To completely close the l i v e rock industry as the SA prefers w i l l
adversely affect practically a11 participants: loss of revenue, increase i n
operating cost, loss of employment, and less competitive for the domestic
industrylntheinternationalmarket. W e h a v e l o s t s o m a n y j o b s a n d - _
income t o other countries i n the past and now NAFTA. Don't allow the
additional pressure of a complete l i v e rock closure. IT WOULD BE WRONG1
To regulate live rock harvest w i t h the allowance of aquaculture w i l l not
create overlapping regulations w i t h state or other federal laws.

A r t i f i c i a l reefs have proven t o be very effective by provldlng surface for
the growth of marine l i f e and habitat f o r tropical fishes and inverts,
Base rocks of a r t i f i c i a l reefs w i l l quickly become attached to each other
by the build up of calcium carbonate. B i l l y Causey has proven t h i s t o be
true by presenting slides t o counci 1 members o f rubble rock created by a
boat grounding. He attested t o the adherence of the rubble rock.
Mi tigation has been u t i lized and successful i n many ways, such as wet
lands and the replacement o f hard bottom removed by beach renourishment
or dredging. There i s no reason why the above mentioned could n o t be
appl led towards " 1 tve rock"?

Don't add t o the current economic impacts that face small business
entities daily by closing rock harvest completely. Many businesses w i l l be
affected, not just the collectors. The health o f marine l i f e and marlne f i s h
depend heavily on the presence of l l v e rock i n an aquarium.

I f I can be of further assistance, please contact me.

                       ,
                       ,
Most sincerely, A;i . L , 4 -
                     .-           l ,     .
                G ? , ,- /L' &w L-
                             .  f-- L-LA-
                /z,)u~
                    6, C'   ,       3300Y'
                   > , 7 .. 3.?-<- - q--, -
                                        &3 7
                                                                                        o"c ,
                                                                                       ~ . l q
BRIEFING BOO)(; ADD ITS^.*^
                                                                r
                                                              M. Gary ~ e s n i k
                                                             Econocaribe Consolidators
                                                              2401 N.W. 6 9 Street
                                                              M i a m i , ~ l o r i d a33147

                                                              January 4th, 1994

          r
        M . Roger Puglieae:
        South A t l a n t i c Fishery Management Council
        One Southpark Circle, Suite 3 0 6
        Charleston, S.C. 29407-4699                                           J
                                                                               JAN 041994
                                                                                 .
                                                                            SOUTH ATLANTIC FISHERY
                                                                             MANAGEMENT COUNCIL
        Dear Mr. P u g l i e s e ;                                            .-  2




             A t Econocaribe Consolidators, w e have had a living reef
        aquarium f o r over two years und i t i s p o s i t i o n e d between m o f f i c e
                                                                               y
        and the main conference room. This living reef has been the focal
        point both aesthetically and educationally f o r persons entering t h e
        conference room.
                                                                                        -   -

                  However, I have been n o t i f i e d t h a t the building bass of t h e s e
        l i v i n g reefs (LIVE ROCK) w i l l soon be i l l e g a l to collect in the
        federal waters o f f t h e Florida Keys. M r . Pugliesv, I believe that
        l i v i n g reef nqunriums need good quality l i v e rock ( s p e c i a l l y
        intricate l e d g e s and flat shapes) to g i v e the aquariums a
        f u n c t i o n a l l y r e a l i s t i c appearance.

              1 s i n c e r e l y hope that you w i l l u s e your expertise t o manage
        the l i v e rock fishery as a sustainable resource that i s important
        to our community both educationally and as a source of income for
        many, including those who maintain these living reefs aquariums.
        Thank you for your time and consideration and hope you feel the
        same way as I do about this issue.

                                                            Sincerely You      S,




                                                             JUf,.r   i
                                                                    f v'P


roo @
RRIEFING BOOK ADDITIOPBs!
Jd-
                                                                                                                       -




       TO: South A t l a n t i c F i s h e r y Management Council
       FROM: Reef Systems & Supporting R e t a i l Establishments i n S
       Re: ~ i v e
                 Rock
       Date: 12/29/93
                                                                                                 lEc&rwx;;:
                                                                                                        151                 i/


                                                                                                       JAN 041994
       Dear M r . Roger P u g l i e s e :
                                                                                                    SOUTH A T W T I C FISHERY
              W a r e w r i t i n g t h i s l e t t e r w i t h t h e concern on t h e c oslng of
                 e                                                                                   FEME       CGUNCIL
       l i v e rock c o l l e c t i n g .     A s r e t a i l e s t a b l i s h m e n t s i n South F l o r i d a
       d e a l i n g with supplying l i v i n g reef systems, w e j o i n t l y oppose t h e
       ban on c o l l e c t i n g Live f l r u b b l e l frock.           A s you know, t h i s type of
       rock i s t h e foundation of t h e l i v i n g r e e f aquariums.                          e
                                                                                                 W support
       t h e e f f o r t s of t h e F l o r i d a Live Rock A l l i a n c e , who a r e s t r i v i n g f o r
       a c o n t r o l l e d management p l a n .
              A s we understand, t h e r e i s no s c i e n t i f i c evidence t o determine
      t h a t t h e h a r v e s t i n g of r u b b l e rock, i s o r has a d e t r i m e n t a l a f f e c t
      t o t h e reef- areas.                  The environmental parameter of waves and
      t u r b u l e n c e c o l l e c t t h e rock and sand i n a s p e c i f i c a r e a , i t h i n d e r s
      t h e p r o c e s s of t h e s e t t l i n g of c o r a l l a r v a . T h i s i s because t h i s
      zone i s considered a h i g h l y dynamic area, which i s consta-ntly-being
      rearranged. Therefore; c o r a l l a r v a c o u l d s e t t l e on t h e rubble r o c k ,
      however; t h e y do n o t grow t o a mature r e p r o d u c t i v e l e v e l , due t o
      t h i s environmental parameter, t h i s w i l l prevent t h i s a r e a from e v e r
      becoming a s t a b l e l i v i n g c o r a l reef h a b i t a t .
               By c o l l e c t i n g t h e rock s t r i c t l y i n rubble zone a r e a s , t h e r e i s
      no adverse a f f e c t t o t h e c o r e reef a r e a s . The c o l l e c t i n g of r o c k
      i s b u i l d i n g an economical s t r u c t u r e n a t i o n wide and t h o s e who a r e
      economically dependent on t h i s market w i l l b e i n f a v o r of t h e
      c o n s e r v a t i o n of t h i s r e s o u r c e .      T h i s market does n o t have any
      d e t r i m e n t a l a f f e c t on t h e l o b s t e r , f i s h o r s h e l l f i s h i n d u s t r i e s .
      N e i t h e r , on t h e a e s t h e t i c s of l i v i n g r e e f s which b r i n g m i l l i o n s of
      d o l l a r s from t h e t o u r i s m i n d u s t r y .
                  e
                W urge r e t a i l e r s n a t i o n wide t o s u p p o r t t h e management
      program of c o l l e c t i n g Rubble Rock, s i n c e t h i s market enhances and
      i s d i r e c t l y r e l a t e d t o markets of aquarium a c c e s s o r i e s , which a r e
      a b i g g e r and more p r o f i t a b l e market t h a n t h e rock.                    Accessories
      such as, a c r y l i c t a n k s , pumps, l i g h t s , wet-dry f i l t e r systems,
      p r o t e i n s k i m e r s , bio-media, chemical r e s i n s , and t h e l i s t goes on
      and on and on; and n o t t o mention f i s h which l i v e l o n g e r i n t a n k s
      t h a t a r e s u p p l i e d w i t h l i v e r u b b l e r o c k i n l i v i n g r e e f aquariums.
                A s you can imagine t h e s a l t water aquarium i n d u s t r y i s worth
      m i l l i o n s of d o l l a r s a y e a r and t h e rock i n d u s t r y , i n South F l o r i d a
      a l o n e , i s worth over 1 m i l l i o n a y e a r .           I t is e s t i m a t e d t h a t f o r
      every $200.00 s p e n t i n l i v e rock, a n o t h e r $1000.00 i s spent i n
      aquarium a c c e s s o r i e s .        This f i g u r e n a t i o n wide is w e l l worth
      m i l l i o n s of d o l l a r s i n rock and a c c e s s o r i e s . So a s c o l l e c t o r s and
      r e t a i l e r s w e urge you t o p r o t e c t and support t h i s i n d u s t r y ! ! !
As a marine collector and owner of Reef Systems.



      V
Lorenzo F. ~     l     v    a     r      e   e

Phone: ( 3 0 5 ) 252-3818 and beeper ( 3 0 5 ) 567-4803

By Appointment
                                   SOME WINOSFISm
                                  6 6 N S 126th STRZn
                                ~ 0 ~ ~ 4 # L 3 3 7 6 f




     Pet Boutique




  Reef Keeper Marine. Inc.
    50Ql Brd Rd. 014. E




               fresh and sahvoter fish
               aquarium supplies
               custom aquariums
               tank maintenance
            8373 S.W. 40th Street
            Miami Florida 33 155
            T ~ I .(365) 227-9414
                                                                 [E,E
                                                                                                    I
 January 6, 1084                                                 k

                                                                       JAN 06 1994
 Mr. Roger Pugilese                                                  SOUTH ATLANTIC F I S H E ~ Y
                                                                      MANAGEMENT COUNCIL
 The South Atlantic Fishery Management Council
 Southpark Bulldlng, Sulte 306
 1 Southpark Circle
 Charleston, South Carolina 29407-4889

 Dear Mr. Pugliese:

 Kent Marine is a manufacturer of water filtration equlpment and chemical supplements for
 aquarlum use.

 We are aware that you are taklng public comments on the issue of THE COLLECTION OF
 LIVE ROCK In federal waers.

 We would like to state our y l p ~ o r for the wnfinued_collectlon of Live Ro& tf properly
                                        t
 managed, Llve Rock collecting would be no more damaging to the envlronmrnt than
 sport flthlng, boating or other activltiet that the government manages. It is much
 much less damaglng than sewage from clties, large shipping, oil drilllng and many other
 activities.
 Marlne aquariums promote public undentendlng of the fragile nature of marlne life. Many
 are in schools, restaurants and other publlc places.

Unfortuqately, our Industry is not a large one, and W is difficult for us to defend ourselves
against the ravings and radical and often dishonesl methods of environmentalists. We do
however employ a number of people, end Indeed the pet shops of thls country have came to
depend on live rock collected in U.6. waters. We also would Hke to see 8 sustainable yield
of live rock, and some controls are in order.
As our ewnomy trler to &me out of recession, President Clinton has said that he is
dependant on Small Business to provide the Jobsto build a strong economy. Small Buslness
Is alnady.pushed to the maximum wllh environmental and safety lews, new upcoming taxes
for healthcan etc. You are rsklng us to save our economy, coutdnY the federal government
tly to cooperate somewhere?

Plerra manage the collecting of live rock but do not outlaw it!




'.lack Kent
Owner
RQUARIUM PRODUCTS            TEL N o . 4 1 0 - 7 6 1 - 6 4 5 8
                                                                                                   -




   BRIEFING BOOK ADDITION
                          AQUARIUM PRODUCTS
                              180-L PENROD COURT
                             GLEN BURNIE, MD 21061
                                                (410) 761-2100
                                                January 6,1994        p3~mv~
          The South Atlantic Fishery Management Council
                                                                          JAN 071994
                                                                                           I
                                                                                           !
          Southpark Building, Suite 306
          1 Southpark Circle                                            SOUTH ATLANTICFISHERY
          Charleston, South Carolina 294074699                           IU\AHAGEMENT COUNG~L


          Attn: Mr. Roger Pugliese
                                                  Re; Collection o "live rock"
                                                                  f
          Members of the Council;

          I have just entered into my 50th year in the aquarium business; and, in all this
          time, I haven't seen such a significantly tiny segment of the harvesting from
          natural resources to be blown entirely out of proportion and given so much
          attentton!!

            In one storm, Ihave watched more "live rock" thrown up on m e beach by waves
            than the aquarium industry would use by the year 2020!! So, depriving 35
            collectors their well earned livelihood, the livelihood of the dealers to whom they
            ship and the rest of the businesses that earn a living from this "rock" would really
            only hurt the very economy that needs bolstering. This would just send another
      .   . business to our overseas competitors.


          Nothing is lost even to the misinformed ecologists, as these same individuals
          that called are even willing to put rock back into the ocean as a form of
          aquaculture ifthe State of Florida would make it easier!

          As a pioneer in this hobby and industry, I appeal to the "common sense" of the
          members ofthe Council. Look to the positive effect of allowing the collection of
          this necessary "living rock":

                  1. It teaches ecology, marine science, the beauty and fascination of
           nature and utilizes what is wasted in natural storms.

                  2. It helps the economy and the taxes that came into the effected states.

                  3. Through aquaculture, it could even develop further
RQUQRIUM PRODUCTS          TEL ~ 0 . 4 1 0 - 7 6 1 - 6 4 5 8




          Please look at this situation in an unbiased, sensible light and you will see that
          there is really no harm being done! The Collection and growing of "living rock"
          will be an advantage to the States involved. I ' not like mining or pumping oil -
                                                         ts
          nothing will be harmed and many will be helped.

          Keep the United States strong by not destroying the initiatives of the few who are
          trying to do something right!! Small businesses helped "build this nation"!

          Sincerely,

          AQUARIUM PRODUCTS


                                                                                       -   -
          Merrill Cohen, President
          (Former Mayor of Baltimore's Committee member for the founding of the
          National Aquarium in Baltimore; former first board member of the National
          Aquarium in Battimore; member of farmer U. S. Senator 'Mac" Mathias
          committee on the Environment and preserving the Chesapeake Bay.)
GRIEFING BOOK ADDITION
         January 7, 1994

         The South Atlantic Fishery Management Council
         Southpark Building, Suite 306 1 Southpark Circle
         Charleston, SC 29407-4699
         Attn: Roger Pugliese


         Dear Roger,
         I am writing this letter to protest the restrictions being considered on the
         harvesting of live rock. I have been involved in the marine hobby for only five
         years. In that short period of time, I have learned a great deal about the biology
         of marine organisms and the ecology of marine environments. My knowledge
         was gleaned simply as a matter of maintaining a marine aquarium and reading
         associated literature. As a marine aquarium hobbyist, I was disappointed to
         learn of the banning of live rock collection in State waters. Now, with the advent
         of further restrictions, I am compelled to voice my strong opposition.
         As you may know, live rock is used in types of marine aquaria referred to as
         "reef tanks," According to surveys in the hobbyist literature there are -     --
         approximately 200,000-250,000 reef tanks worldwide. Relative to other
         pastimes such as scuba diving, we are a small lot indeed. We are also not vety
         organized and, consequently, are unable to defend ourselves against those
         who criticize us. I hope to give you more information in order to allow you to
         make a decision based on fact instead of one based on the emotional
         statements of others.
      I would like to begin by stating that live rock is a renewable natural resource.
      Live rock is essentially the dead skeletons of reef-building corals "cemented*
     together by means of calcareous algae where it becomes a substrate for new
     coral growth and a home for a variety of marine fauna. Often, the skeletons fall
     to the bottom of the reef where again they become live rock and act as shelter
     for various marine fauna Here, because of sediment and lack of light, coral
     growth cannot occur on the rock. It is this rock that has fallen away and is
     devoid of coral growth that is used as substrate material in the aquarium trade.
     Had this material been allowed to stay on the ocean bottom it would have
     eventually become part of the marine sediment (i.8. sand) due to the effects of
     wave action and boring organisms. This is a continual process as corals grow
     and collapse due to wave action, storms, fish, boring organisms, etc. Corals
     incorporate free calcium from the water into calcium carbonate as part of their
     skeleton. It is estimated that literally tens of thousands of tons of calcium
     carbonate is deposited by corals each year! My point here is that live rock is not
     a "fossil resource," and although I do not have supporting scientific evidence at
     this time, I have little doubt that the rate of calcium carbonate deposition is
     orders of magnitude greater than that harvested as live rock for the aquarium
     trade!




   Z'd
      If I have not convinced you that the impact on the environment is negligible, let
      me discuss the educational aspects of this wonderful hobby! Those of us
      maintaining marine reef aquaria do not take our responsibilities lightly. The
      financial costs alone dictate that these aquaria are not simply "floral
      arrangements" where specimens are atlowed to die only to be replaced by new
      arrivals. There is a genuine concern for all organisms kept such that success is
      determined by specimens thriving and reproducing not just "staying alive." Of
      course, this concern for our miniature ecosystems naturally includes the wild
      ecosystems as well. I have become keenly aware of issues affecting natural
      coral reefs. In fact, the more I learn the more 1 am convinced of the importance
      of the aquarium as an educational tool. Of the 100+ people who have viewed
      my tank, the vast majority will never see a natural coral reef. Before viewing my
      tank, corals were nothing more than interesting "rock formations" growing on the
      ocean bottom. People who view my tank listen to what Isay and walk away with
      a new awareness of the importance and beauty of coral animals. For it is only
      after becoming aware of something can you begin to care and ultimately act.
      I'm not saying that after viewing my tank people go out and petition oil
      companies to use multi-hulled ships. However, they will at least be moved
      when they hear of a tanker running upon a reef, or of clear-cutting causing
      siltation and smothering reefs in tropical island communities, or destructive
      fishing methods such as the Mexican shrimp trawlers, or even French nuclear
      bomb testing on reefs! Perhaps some will be inspired into direct action,       --
      perhaps others indirectly. The point is that a level of awareness and all the
      potential for action has been attained.
       It appears to me that the issue of live rock harvesting has divided "hobbyists"
       and "conservationalists." Nothing can be further from the twth. Aquarium
       hobbyists are very sensitive of the natural effects of their hobby. If it was
      demonstrated that the hobby was truly negatively affecting natural ecosystems,
      the vast majority, myself included, would stop today. But I am convinced this is
      not the case. The negligible environmental impact that might exist is by far
      outweighed by the education the hobby provides. Based on this, I believe in the
      context of this issue a "hobbyist" is a person who bases their arguments on
      direct observation and fact, whereas a "conservationist" is someone who bases
      their arguments on emotion and scare tactics. It is my sincerest hope that cooler
      heads will prevail and the controlled harvesting of live rock be allowed to
      continue.



                                                     Sincerely,


                                                    Gregory E. Cook
                                                    213 Horizon Avenue
                                                    Mountain View, CA 94043
                                                    415/ 965-4248




E'd
                                                                  F   . i? 1
EL$
g     'Q1EFlNG BOOK ADDITION
       k                                             5 5 3 c_-,



                      GREEHBROOH POOLS

                                   /3
           bo3- 7 6 ? - ~ ~ 3 0 @ %8    - Li'3 6k   'p&EE
                                                       u
           -    9j/                                 JAN 101994
IRA GRABOW                *b~~&yi
                               -                J   r   .


1650 MADAUGA AVE.. SUITE 4C8 CORAL GABLES. FL 3 3 ; 4 6

             -
TEL: (305) 66 1.0707 F A X (305) 86 1-76 10
C?C G566p0       CGL 007215
                      FING BOOK ADD.
                      South Atlantic Fishery
                       Management Council
                                                    December 29, 1993               p""QV                   I',
                                                                                                       12i \11.
                                                                                                       qn

                                                                                         jAN 1 0 1994
                      Attn: Robert Mahood
                      1 Southpark Circle #306
                      Charleston, SC 24407

  (Iiffm*reedy        Dear Council Members:

6204 N- 1t Street
           8h         I wish to express my support for a total and immediate ban on live rock collection in
Arlington, VA 22205   fisheries under your jurisdiction. Please consider this letter during the hearings to be
 Ph.:703.538.4568     held in January on this matter.
       I
                      As a scuba diver, I support preserving coral reefs to the maximum extent possible.
                      Coral reefs provide the richest habitat anywhere in the marine environment. Apart from
                      their stunning natural beauty and vibrant displays of marine life, reefs offer high
                      biological value, species diversity, and productivity. Many important species rely on
                      reefs for habitat and food, including fisheries of great economic importance to the
                      United States. Unfortunately, coral reefs are suffering from the effects of pollution,
                      overdevelopment of coastal areas, and overfishing.                                 .-

                      Of all the available uses for this resource, wild coral collection is the most destructive
                      and unsustainable. At any level or rate, coral harvesting damages the resource. Coral
                      organisms take decades to produce live rock and hundreds of years to create reefs, and
                      it takes too long for the reefs to recover from damage. The taking of corals also
                      weakens the remaining coral organisms and makes them more susceptible to disease.
                      Moreover, the damage causes a ripple effect on other species that rely on the reef for
                      habitat. In the end, live rock and coral harvesting is like committing environmental
                      genocide. It pulls the rug out from under thousands of species and attacks the health .of
                      the ecosystem. The minimal economic value of harvesting coral is cancelled ten times
                      over by the damage done to the resource itself.

                      I ask the Ccuncil to take a stand against this harmful practice. Please ban coral and live
                      rock collection, not in three years, but immediately. I implore you to weigh the long-
                      term consequences for our natural resources and to forgo any short-term economic gain.

                      Thank you for your consideration of my concerns.

                      Sincerely,



                      Cliff McCreedy

                      CC:    Representative Jim Moran      Senator Charles Robb
                             Senator John Warner           Project ReefKeeper
                                                                                                             .   .


    A   N     D     ~       ~   ~    ~    C     N    L     I    V     E     R     O EQ Z ( U QI
                                                                                  (                    N
                                                                                                       ~     ~
                                                                                                             G   ~     JAN) 101994
                                                                                                                        ~
                                                                                                                     SOUTH A T U N T l i FISHERv
                     As a businessman,               d i v e r , snorkler, water lover,                    b o a t o MANAGEMENT COUNCIL
                                                                                                                     wner,

            a q u a r i u m k e e p e r , a n d t a x p a y e r , I m o s t s t r o n q l y o b j e c t t o any

            f o r m of r e q u l a t i o n a g a i n s t t h e h a r v e s t f n g o f l i v e r o c k from t h e

            ocean f l o o r .        T h i s i s j u s t a n o t h e r c o n c e n t r a t e d a t t e m p t by s e v e r -

            a l e n v i r o n m e n t a l g r o u p s t o e n f o r c e t h e i r b e l i e f s on t h e p e o p l e o f

            F l o r i d a and t h e U.S.A.           without              evidence t o substantiate these

            be1 l e f s .
                     U s i n g t h e Bambi syndrome a s t h e i r a r g u m e n t b a s i s , t h e y t u r n

            a b a r i c ; l ~ . ~ h a r m l e s s p r o f e s s i o n i n t o t h e r a p e o f t h e Keys and o t h e r
            off-shore waters.                 The o n l y s t u d i e s d o n e on r o c k r e m o v a l have shown
            i t t o be a c o n s t a n t l y r e n e w a b l e r e s o u r c e due t o t h e c o n - s t a n t _ e r o s i o n

I           and s h i f t i n g o f t h e o c e a n f l o o r .

                    The r i d i c u l o u s r e m a r k s i n t h e H e r a l d made by c e r t a l n a n t i -
            c o l l e c t i n g i n d i v i d u a l s , " T h e h a r v e s t i n g of l i v i n g t h i n g s I s a
            priviledge.             I t i s n o t a b a s i c human r i g h t . "           make me wonder if t h i s
            i s n o t a p e r s o n a l v e n d e t t a i n s t e a d o f an e c o l o g i c a l c o n c e r n .           State-

            m e n t s s u c h a s " T h e r e m o v a l o f h a r d b o t t o m a r e a s t h a t w o n ' t be r e -

            t u r n e d e x c e p t on a g e o l o g i c . s c a l e M a n d ' I n      some a s p e c t s i t may be
            t h e b u i l d i n g b l o c k s o f f u t u r e r e e f a r e a s t 1 a r e so b r o a d and m i s - l e a d i n g
            t h a t t h e e x a c t o p p o s i t e v i e w c o u l d be s t a t e d w i t h as much t r u t h as

            these remarks contain.                   ( T h e s e q u o t e s a r e f r o m t h e M i a m i ~ e r a l d1 / 9 / 9 4 . )

                    When a c o n t r o l l e d s t u d y i s done by q u a l i f i e d , u n - b i a s e d p r o f e s -

            s i o n a l s a n d a . d e c i s i o n i s made c o n s i d e r i n g a 1 1 t h e a s p e c t s o f t h i s
            p r o f e s s i o n b o t h e c o n o m i c a l l y and e c o l o g i c a l l y ,   Iw i l l    f u l l y support

            w h a t e v e r d e c i s i o n i s made,       b u t . t o h a v e a d e c i s i o n r e a c h e d on t h e

            h y s t e r i c a l c r i e s o f u n d e r q u a l i f i e d i n d i v i d u a l s o r n o i s y groups would
            be an i n s u l t t o e v e r y t h i n k i n g r e s i d e n t o f F l o r i d a a n d t h e U . S . A . .
          RICK   PETTS   /   PETTS                                       -- .



SHIEFING BOOK ADDITIC;               .   ~ E ~ E G
                                         n




                                               JAN 10 1994
                                             SOUTH A T M T I C FISHERY
                                              MANAGEMENT COUNCIL
                                  B J ' s PET PALACE
                                 2140w. B U S C H B L V D .
                              TAMPA, FLORIDA 33612



January 9 , 1 9 9 4

To Whom I t May Conccrn:
                                           Re: Amendment ot t h e Coral Management
                                                    Plan


     A a a Pet Shop owner for the past t e n years in the Bay a r e a ,
I cannot begin to express my conccrn over the possibility of a
ban on live rock.

         When establishing a salt water aquaria, base rock is the ideal
media to use. Not only does it a c t aa a filter, but because of
the porous texture of the rock it establishes the perfect bed to
grow good bacteria, which is essential for cycling a salt water
tank. After a week you start adding live rock and your tank
should be cycled within 2 - 3 weeks. At this point, whe-n y o b - s t a r t
adding fish, the live rock starts to play an even bigger role,
s i n c e many reef creatures depend 011 the live rock for their existance.

      Most p e t shop personnel that deal in salt water fish and our
customers a s well, all work towards the optimum natural environment
for our reef aquaria. If you take away the live rock from salt
water aquaria the results will be disasterous. The two go hand in
hand.
     I have talked with a few hands on collectors over the years
and all o f them stem to follow the same guide lines. Most rock
collecting dives are done 10 miles or more from the shoreline and
in 40 - 60 feet of water in numerous locations. How can you honcstly
say that the harvesting of live rock is ruining the marine ecology?
The earth is covered by 2/3 water and the small amount of rock that
is collected for the pet industry could hardly make a dent in the
vast amount of rock that is available,
     A s a business owner I know that if this amendment is p a s s e d ,
I will stand t o lose 50% of my business. We cannot let this happen!
This will not only effect myself but the millions of other people
all over the country from manufacturers, wholesalers, retailers,
collectors, hobbyists e t c . who will be affected by the passage of
t h i v amendment.

     I strongly suggest that you research this amendment more
carefully and start getting the opinions of more q u a l i f i e d people
such as marine biologists and harvesters and stop listening to t h e
environmentalists who h a v e little or no knowledge on this issue.
Thank You.



Beverly J.       beHs,       Owner
?. J ' s P e t F a l a c e
                             -.
                                            .     .--
                                                . , ..   .
                                                             '   .   '   '         lb                        2.'
                                                                                         JAN 12 1994
                                                                                    SOUTH ATLANTIC FISHERY
                                                                                        MANAGEMENT COUNCIL
                                  January 1 0 , 1994

South A t l a n t i c F i s h e r y Management Council
1 South Park C i r c l e , S u i t e 306
Charleston, S. C. 29407-4699
Gentlemen 8
The Coral Reef S o c i e t y s t r o n g l y s u p p o r t s a l l e f f o r t s
towards p r o h i b i t i n g t h e c o l l e c t i o n of l i v e rock from
t h e F l o r i d a seabed f o r the enhancement of a r t i f i c i a l
aquarium r e e f environments.
S h e l l c o l l e c t o r s and t r o p i c a l f i s h c o l l e c t o r s
have a l r e a d y decimated those populations off                                         -   -

Palm Beach County. C o l l e c t o r s have v i r t u a l l y
e l i m i n a t e d o n c e - p l e n t i f u l c o l o r f u l tree s n a i l s
from t h e Keys.
Before t h e same f a t e befalls l i v i n g rock environments,
we urge t h a t a f i r m s t a n d be t a k e n f e d e r a l l y t o
supplement t h e S t a t e of F l o r i d a ban on t h i s p r a c t i c e .


                                  Yours v e r y t r u l y ,



                                  hr~&  S
                                  ~ u d y chrafft
                                  Chairman
                                                                                                               -
3 ~ 1 ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ R r ) f l ~ ~ # ~ ~ ! T
                                u   a*
                                                                               1s2pu1
                                                                                           -4.        '   3-       -- =
                                                                                                                   -
                                                                                                                      .-




                           -
I a#-@   # d u U w                       0   r e w e   g   I W U


                                                                                                                    4
I

                                                                                         JAN 1 2 1994
                                                                                        SOUTH ATW(TIC F~SHER~
                                                                                                 EMENT COUNC"-
         Softcare                                                  Certified   -
                                                                               1              ~~~~~l~~~~
                                                                                        Consulting Services
         Technolo                                                               Network Systems lntmration
                                                                   Operating System and ~pplicationSupport
         Christopher A. Tippins, President

                                         Fax Cover Sheet
                          To:

            Company Name:

                      Phone:

                        Fax:

                       From:

                        Date:

         Comments:




            Number of Pages:
         (Including this one)
                                                -
                          1650 NE 115th Street Suite 111 - Miami, Florida 33181
                               Voice 1 Fax (305) 895-7065 / CIS 72530,215
 Technologies, Inc.       -




 Christopher A. Tippins
 President
Certified           Consuttant




January 12, 1994

Mr. Roger Pugliese
South Atlantic Fishery Management Council
Southpark Building, Suite 306
1 Southpark Circle
Charleston, SC 29407-4520
(803) 57 1-4366
(803) 7694520 (Fax)
                                                                                -   -

My name is Christopher A. Tippins. I live in Miami, Florida. I currently
maintain a 135 gallon marine "living reef' aquarium using live rock to
provide essential biological functions as well as aesthetic natural
appearances. I also have two 55 gallon aquariums that I will be
converting over to use live rock in the near future, as this provides, in my
experience, a much sounder method of biological filtration then standard
undergravel filters.

In my immediate area I know of approximately 3 dozen other hobbyists
who also employ live rock in the marine aquariums. I believe that live
rock is an essential component to a successful marine tank.

                                              o
The purpose of this letter b to petition you t continue to allow a
managed harvest of live rock in federal waters, and to go on public
record favoring such a position. I would also like to request a copy of
your findings and recommendations when they are ready.

I support those businesses which Collect this rock in compliance with
applicable State and Federal regulations. Additionally, I suppoR the
continuing efforts to saentifically study the impact live rock collection has
on the. marine environment as well as efforts to educate the public on
other environmental factors that may impact our seas.




                                      -            -
                1650 NE 115th Street Suite 111 Miami, FL 33181
                                               -
                   Voice/Fax (305) 895-7065 CIS 72530,215
305-895-7065           SOFTCQRE TECH.   I NC.




        It is my personal opinion that other factors (such as dredging,
        deforestation, pollution, gas and oil drilling or exploration) constitute a
        much more serious threat to the life in our oceans and waterways than
        does the harvest of live rock.

        A simple and recent case in point is the recent rupture of the hull of an
        oil tanker off the coast of San Juan, Puerto Rico, which has caused
        untold loss of sea life, and probably has destroyed for many, many
        years, the ecosystem of that region.

        I would like to see the efforts of your organization directed towards these
        vitally important issues, as I believe they will cause both a short and
        long term detrimental effect to our marine environment.

        The keeping of a "living reeP' marine aquarium has brought to me (and
        many others as well) countless hours of enjoyment, as well as (and more
        importantly) a greater understanding and concern for the delicate
        relationship we have with the marine environment.                   --
        I am a member of the Marine Aquarium Society of North America.

        I am also a member and Vice President of the Florida Marine Aquarum
        Society.

        The opinions expressed in this letter are my own, and do not reflect the
        opinions of either M.A.S.N.A. or F.M.A.S.

        I appreciate this opportunity to bring these matters to your attention.


        Sincerely,




        Christopher A. Tippins
                .   .
                                                                                                                                              -
'.   \   ^..I           ..?


                                               R   LGI
                                                                                                                                        Page 1    01 3




                                                                    F. Donald Ahee, Jr.
                                                                   3 90 1 East Broadn-a\.~ 1 1 - d . T
                                                                     Tucson. Arizona 857 1 1
                                                                                                          A d?F_                  ~05&
                                                                            (602) 323-5 122
                                                                             Fas 323-5156


                              Januan 11. 1991                                                                    lB,,,vEl
                              Mr. Roger Pugliese                                                                      JAN 121994
                              South -4tlanticFishery ?r,lanagementCouncil
                                                                                                                    SOUTH ATLXYTIC FISHERY
                              Southpark Building $306                                                                W E M E N T COUNClL
                              1 Southpark Circle
                              Charleston SC 29407-4699

                              RE:      Live Rock regulation

                              Mr.Pugliese:
                              I understand that your organization is currently reviewing the collection practices -and rigidations
                              conceming live ocean rock. I'd like to register my views.

                              I feel there are forces acting against our ocean resources that need active attention. Forces such as siltation
                              pesticides. fertilizers. boating and anchor damage. food fishing abuses. curios collection and _general
                              pollution are challenging our oceans. I do not however. see collecting for the aquarium hobby as a
                              overwhelming factor in relation to these other sources of ocean resource degradation.

                              I believe live rock can be. and should be managed and regulated as a renewable resource. I favor the
                              licensing of collectors beyond basic fishing licenses and phasing out wild collection while phasing in of the
                              aquaculture of rock over a 5 year period.

                              I'm a devoted aquarist successfully keeping live corals for several years. I cannot express how valuable this
                              hobby is to the education of myself and others on these fantastic animals. My peers and I are developing
                              propagation techniques that we feel will lead to complete aquaculture of all these animals in the future.
                              Live rock is the basis for these advances by which critical biolo@cal and zoological seeds grow into
                              scientific discovery as well as educational display.

                              Please consider these points in your decisions.

                              Thanl; you.



                              Don .4hee. Jr.



                              plafmc
    J k N - 1 2 - 9 4        W E D        9 1 1 6       .                    .L-.   -    ....-.-.   .   --    .   -.   .   -.    t   .-. .-
                                                                                                                                     F.
                                                                                                                                       -,
                                                                                                                                       .
                                                                                                                                              .-. .



                                                                                                                                              .
                                                                                                                                              ,
                                                                                                                                              -


    BRIEFING BOO                                                              ITI 6 ;                             JAN 1 2 1994                        1



                                                                                    ,.
                                                                                                             SOUTH ATLANTIC FISHERY


                        )
                        B-
                         \


                                          SOPHISTICATED AQUARIUM
                                              7831 Bird Road                 Miami, F\arida 331 55
                                                                                                              MANAGEMENT        COUNCIL




1    DATE                       T lME                       A.M.   a P.M.                  NUMBER OF PAGES
                                                                                           (Including Cover Letter):

I    NOTE: If YOU dld not ,OC.IV~ of IhO paga or If YOU M r ~ u Q s ~ M 0.iI the wetHylng number (MIOW).
                                 @I1                     I        p   ~ o I ~




                                                                    I
    ATTENTION




REMARKS:
         As a t r o p i c a l f i s h s t o r e owner f o r n e a r l y 3 4 y e a r s , I h a v e seen
many c h a n g e s i n t h e k e e p i n g o f s a l t w a t e r a q u a r i u m s .    One o f t h e m o s t
b e n e f i c f a l o f t h e s e has been t h e i n c r e a s e d u s e of l i v e r o c k and b a s e
rock i n t h e aquarium s e t t i n g .             G r e a t advancements i n a q u a r i u m l i g h t l n g
a n d f i l t r a t i o n h a v e made t h e k e e p i n g of t h e s e r o c k s a l t v e , h e a l t h y , a n d
flourlshlng.             O r g a n i c a l l y dead r o c k can e v e n a c q u i r e l i v e g r o w t h o n I t
a f t e r b e l n g exposed t o t h e 1 i v e r o c k u n d e r p r o p e r a q u a r i u m conditions.
          Immense p l e a s u r e and g r e a t l e a r n i n g s t r l d e s a r e b e i n g m a d e by
a q u a r l s t s w o r l d w i d e I n . a l l a s p e c t s o f t h i s hobby,     Many a n a q u a r l s t
c a n t e l l more a b o u t t h e I l f e a b o u n d i n g on a I t v e r o c k i n h l s a q u a r i u m
t h a n i s b e i n g b a n d i e d a b o u t now b y p e o p l e w i t h ho k n o w l e d g e o r e x p e r i e n c e
r e g a r d i n g t h e s u b j e c t . L e t us n o t c o n f u s e t h e t a k i n g of l l v e r o c k t o
c r e a t e a b e a u t f f u l l i v i n g r e e f f a r f r o m t h e ocean f o r t h e e n j o y m e n t and
e d u c a t i o n o f many, many p e o p l e t o t h e t h l e v e r y o r d e s t r u c t i o n o f c o r a l s .
          The oceans and t h e i r e n v i r o n m e n t s a r e n o t s o l e l y f o r t h e use o f a
s e l e c t g r o u p o f t h e h e a l t h y , w e a l t h y , and c a p a b l e t o e n j o y , n o r a r e t h e y
t h e r e s t r i c t l y f o r b o a t e r s , f i s h e r m e n , l o b s t e r m e n , o i l d r l l l l n g , beach
r e f u r b i s h i n g or treasure hunters.                 Each o f t h e s e a c t l v l t i e s c e r t a i n l y
cause " e n v i r o n m e n t a l damage", b u t t h e y a t s o p r o v i d e b e n e f f t s , w h i c h I s
why t h e y e x i s t .      The b e n e f i t s o f 1 4 v e r o c k and b a s e r o c k I s - t h a t - t h e y
g r e a t l y h e l p t o b r i n g e d u c a t l o n and p l e a s u r e t o m i l l l o n s o f p e o p l e who
w o u l d o t h e r w i s e n e v e r be e x p o s e d t o i t , They have h e l p e d t o c r e a t e a
new dimension i n a q u a r i u m k e e p i n g n e v e r b e f o r e p o s s i b l e .
          The b a n n i n g o f c o l l e c t i n g r o c k now, w i t h no s c i e n t i f i c e v i d e n c e t o
s u p p o r t t h e c l a i m s made by m l s - g u t d e d e n v i r o n m e n t a l i s t s w o u l d be c r l m i n a l
To d e p r i v e t h e young, t h e e l d e r l y , o r t h e i n f i r m f r o m e v e r y walk o f l i f e
                                                                                                                          .
a s o u r c e o f p l e a s u r e , e n t e r t a i n m e n t and e d u c a t i o n w o u l d be very,?hort-
s i g h t e d , L e t t h e o p p o n e n t s o f r o c k c o l l e c t i n g r e n d e r p r o o f that.&      the
g r e a t ocean s t r i p p e r t h e y say I t i s ,           I b e l q e v e t h e y w i l l have much
d i f f i c u l t y I n d o i n g so.       On t h e o t h e r hand, we c a n p r o v e t h e g r e a t s t r i d e s
we a r e m a k i n g i n t h e k e e p i n g , g r o w t h , and c u l t u r e o f t h e l l v e r o c k a n d
other marine environment.
FROM :         SER LIFE INC.           /        KEN NEDIMYER                 PHONE NO.    : 305 E52 3500
         .   ,--.   .   --...        - .




                                                          P.O. Box 7 12
                                                       Tavernier, F1.33070
                                                                 305-852-4955
                                                           Fax 305-852-3500
                                                                                                            January 12th, 1994

To:Tl~e
      Gulf and South Atlantic Fishery Management Councils


Dear Council members,                                                                                                   - .




As a harvester of livc; m k ru~d owner and operator or a wholcsalc tropicnl fish
                                     tilo
busiltcss u i thc K c p , I'd likc to mwurrrgc you to roooxwider your preeent positiom on the
fbture of live rock harvest in thc Floridn Keys. The preference of the SAFMC to
inm~edisttly  close the hamest upon passage of this ammendment seems a bit harsh given
the circurnstanccs. I don't see m y reason to pursue this position and it surprises me you
are cvm considering it. Even vow own economiet who wrote the economic sectlon of
the a m g r t s u n e c s t c c l a manaced harvest.instcnd ofimnlediate closure (Panes
23 and 2 9 .

      e
I've rd the ammendment sevcrnl times and am umazed that a sovemment apencv

and t seriouslv d
      o                        S           s          m           p        i         . If
you continue on this course, dozens of fishcrmcn will be in serious financial trouble, and
hundreds, pcrhap thousands, of pet shops, wholesatere and manutkcturers will fel
significant financial losscv as thc price ot-mck skyrockets and availability goes way down.
Live rock fiom Florida is i many ways the backbone of the marine aquarium trade and
                             n
m y serious disruption in it's availability will cause serious problems.

Seven4 options a r e available to you and I would suggest you D              one~that d o w s                    U
for a manaped hanest which could sustain the trade until an alternative b found.
You scum to bc: pushing hard for aquaculture as the solution, but how can you expect us to
go this route when the State DER up until now is saying "don't bother to apply for a
dredge and fill permit in the Keys". This fishcry is primarily based in the Keys and that is
where we will need to be able to have our leascs if we it is to survive here. I know that
mme b c h e s of the Fl.Dept. of Environmental Protaction Agency are gung ho about
aquacuhre, but not all have caught the fever &d as a result thcre's dill no likelihood of
getting the needed pzimits in the Keys. Several applications are now going through the
             - .                -*         rl   - .-   L   -.A   .--.:I   - -- :------A   ...
                                                                                            L
                                                                                            .
                                                                                            :   ,.if   -....I,    -+
                                                                                                                 M: e   J,,,.c)
FROn :       SEn 'L IFE INC.   /   KEN NED INYER   PHONE NO.   : 305 €52 3500




see how you can call it au option and fmit on us. I would like to see yo11hase any
closure o phase out on the success of Lhese individuals getting their permits and also on
         r
the marketability of their product. To date there is no reliablc estimate as to how long it
will take to produce a g o d quality, marketable rock on im open water lease sitc i the
                                                                                    n
Keys. I think the amendment's figure of six months to a couple yearn may be a bit wishrui.

M v rec~mmendation the management of Live rock would be along the lines of
         7
                       for
=on C. 1. n or c.1.b aa Ustcrl on p a ~ 8 of the amendment m d explained later in the
                                            c
text. If an annual quote system is adopted I would suggest W the ~ u o t be divided up
                                                                         a
into inmths or quarten so that thc harvest could be s ~ r e a d ovef the year. I
                                                                   out
would prefer option h which is w limit acce~sleffoTf.YOU    could limit ;LCCCRCI by requiring
a specid permil and onh. isstte p e d t s to those individuals who have reported Uve
rock ladines in tlie last veer. This would stop and growth in numbers and would
eliminate those individuals who have not been r v i n g . You could also limlt effort by
nstrlcthp the M v harvevt amount, similar to what thc State of Florida did i their  n
propused phase out. In this option you wuld also have o provision to reduce the daily-
take of wild live rock ar quacultured rock began to bc h m d so that those-individuals
who can't afford to get an aquaculture leasc could still harvest a mall amount of live rock
(200 1bs per day) for their custornm. This reduced b e a t would also help provide the
necewuy base rock (rubble rock) for starting and maintaining new systems. I think it is
imperative that you allow somc foxm o f wild harvest until an aquaculture industry is
established and is producing u hndional substitute for natural base rock.

I realize the pressure i going to bc on you to yield t prwure fiom the State of Florida
                           s                          o
arid vote their way. What and who is driving them to push this issue like they are is
beyond mt;. Do Urcv (or you for that matter) reallv bclleve that the part time efforts
of 40 to SO collectors work in^ out of 20 faat boats are r &  e     no in^ t have an
                                                                            o
impact on a resource that c c b w e m Inlundds of square.miles and candsts oftrllliuns
of tons of rock? What are they uumplishLig by this charade? Who do they think
they're hiCWi~lg?Tilc1.0arc a lot ofpcoplc depending on you to mnnsge fieheries and
aquatic;resources b a d on sound scientific; &(lr tu~d x~lctt~ods cnaotimdism and
                                                                not
             l
p l i t i ~ apressure. I' you dmY have sound &tn then look into w i n g some. There is no
                        f
immediate danger ofrumixig out of live rock so t m i time to a least do some basic
                                                   h s            t
studies on lt. llave an indcpcndcnt d y s r look ar ir and w e iChc cia11~ V pSJ U a b c t k
ppdive.         Don't blindlv bclicvc tho " e x ~ e rfindin~s"
                                                     t        from the State of
Florida.

                                                               Sincerely,



                                                                       Sea Life Inc.
TQMPQ ERu SQLTWQTER      TEL N o . 1 - 8 1 3 - $ 7 5 - 8 5 0 1           Jan l d , 9 4 1 2 : 0 2 N o . 3 3 2 ?.;:




                         -1-813875-3574                          V   MARINE LIFE

                                      Fax (813) 875-8501

          January 14, 1994



          Gulf of Mexico Fishery
            Management Council
          5401 W . Kennedy B l v d .
          L i n c o l n Center, #331
          Tampa, FL 33069

          Deat Council Members:
                                                                                                     -   -

          I would like to comment on the impending regulations
          which are about to be implemented on live rock.
          I believe the council is correct in the belief that some
          sort of management, i.e. t r i p limits and limited entry,
          needs to be fostered by our industry. A cap on licenses
          and a 1,000 pound per day trip limit would prohibit the
          unlimited harvest now going on. Harvesting 1,600 pounds
          of live rock on the west coast is all two divers and a
          24 f o o t b o a t can h a n d l e . nost rock divers, with the
          exception of the few uith 6 0 foot vessels, operate in
          this manner.

          We, as uholesalers, have become dependent on the income
          derived from live rock. I f a trip limit of less t.han
          1,000 pounds per vessel is adopted, i t would put a
          s e v e r e financial loss at our f e e t and we uould not be
          able to continue in business. I believe that limited
          entry and trip limits now are the answer to over
          fishing.
          As for a phase out t o allow time for aquaculture, one
          must realize that it took me 5 years to obtain an 8
          month permit for my aquaculture activities. A t this
          rate, even i f one tried to obtain a permit from the
          State of Florida, you would be looking at 3-5 y e a r s t o
          obtain i t now. I know this as I have a second lease in
          process and it is now over 1 1/2 years in process even
          though I was assured by t h e S t a t e t h a t i t would take 8
          months to 1 year t o process.
    Gulf of M e x i c o Fishery
    Hanagement Counci 1
    Page Two

    January 1 4 , 1 9 9 4

.
    T h u s , a t this p o i n t , aquaculture has no option unless we
    have a 1,000 pound per day harvest and a s t a b l e period
    of continued h a r v e s t o f 8-10 years to allow enough time
    t o obtain a l e a s e and allow proper growth time f o r the
    seed rock.

    I hope the council will rely on scientific d a t a and
    industry realities t o formulate policy!


    T   M    ~   ~    A     T   E   R


    ,d  hard Londercr
Jan. 13, 1993

Gulf of Mexico Fishery Managemen1 Council
Lincoln Center. Suite 33 1
5401 West Kennedy Boulevard
Tampa, Florida 33609-2468
Y 13-228-2815


Dear Council Members.

1 auended your Public Heafing held in Pensacola this past Tuesday evening and was SO
pleased with the turn out. The issue of Live Rock Harvest is such an importin1 one and both
sides needcd the oppor~unityto present heir feelings on this topic.
                                                                                        -   -


I've been a diver since 1985 so the hcalth m d well being of our natural recf syslem i s an
issue I hold near and dear. 95'70 of my diving has been done out of Destin so naturnlly I am
most concerned with my "back yard". Ar present time there are at least 3 'licensed' rock
collec1ors in our comnlunity aggressively harves~ rock, one OF which has s criminal court
                                                     live
c u e pending for illegally harvesting in slate waters.( David L. Smith) Destins "oasis of reef
in a desert of sand" cannot withstand this Lype of aggressive collecting. Another of the
collectors ( Joe Howell - dealer number WD-5653) has quipped his boat with a hydraulic
winch and a collection box which ci~uldaccomrnuda~e8 people! You can't cell me he just
collecting !:he little rubble vs he big chiseled oTf c h u k s !

T am 100% for stopping the harvest of live rock. 1 am aiso 100% for letting any of the
colleclors pursue aquacullure. but not at the expense of our natural reef. So I m adamantly
against this phaseout period of 3 years. They had their phaseoul period and when [he harvest
limit was reached it was overturned! Let these harvesters develop their own rock LO see if it
can be donc, but no1 ar the sarne time as harvesting the wild rock that's Ief. Tf [he
aquaculmre dwsn't work and d l the wild is gone aftcr 3 years, all rhat is ieE1 is sand.

1 am not an alarmist. 1 am a realist. I, and my fellow divers, am on thesc reefs day after day
and it's so disheartening when you find a rusty crowbar or hammer on the reef or even a
seclion missing or a small out cropping that's completely gone!!! and this can he seen of red
in state and federal waters.

Please adopt thc policy of the South Allanlic Courrcil and prohibit the harvesting complctcly!

Lori Reid
PAD1 D'vemaster 8 150

&@
                                               WORDS & GR-iPHICS




                             EMERALD COAST

Jan. 13, 19993
                         SCHOOL
                     SCUBA
G l of Mexico Fishcry Management Council
 uf
Lincoln Center. Suitc 331
5401 Wcst Kennedy Buulevard
Tampa, Florida 33609-2468
8 13-228-2815
Fax 813-225-7015


Dcar Council Mem hers,

The issuc of Live Rock Harvesting as been a very sensitive onc for me for several years.
And with the recrni excelleration of h i s harvest uccumng in h e waters off of Desun. 1 feel
adamant about expressing my concerns.
                                                                                         -   -

According to FMFC stats there are approximately 35 individuals reporting landings. What
this staristic doesn't rcprcscnt are the 'teamsoC divers' rhese individuals take o u harvesting
                                                                                     ~
wilh them. This practice if cornmonplacc in our area wilh these 'team divers' beins paid on
average $100.00 per day. With a team, instead of an individual, collecting you can see how
rampant destruction can and does occur.

1 applaud any individual who has the foresight LO endeavor into aquaculture. 11 is a
worthwhile enterprise that will hopefully produce posidve resulrs, but at the same time our
natural "wild rock" needs to be protected in the even h i s cultivated rock dtxsn't pan ouc
With this in mind, 1 do not support thc 3 ycar phase-out.

I am unyielding in m y support for h e tolal prohibition of live rock harvesting. In a
community as small as Des~inis, and with so many individuals involved in this practice, 1 can
                                   of
foresee nothing but the eradica~ion our natural rcsource for the ecomonic profit of a few
who care nothing for a fishing community h a t have madc their living in this manner for
generations.

Please adopt the SAFMCs position on thc ban of wild rock harvesting.

Thank you,
Anna Schmitz
PAD1 Course Director - 19504
       -
Owner Emcrald Coast Scuba Schocrl
I

    PZ'TUND P I T T S & ~ . J ~ - ~ ~ U CMILE #?39
                                         LE
    RT. 22 WILLIAM PENN HW.
    MONROEVILLE. PA 15146
    JAN-14-94   F R I   14:43   BAY   CAPITAL




'BRIEFING BOOK ADDITIOI\I

                                                                           I   ,
       January 14, 1994                                                        !   4   f?::!:
                                                                                         . ..




       To Whom it may concern:
       It is appalling that tax payers' money is being    used for s hearing on
       harvesting live rock. There are oceans full of     rock. X have to wonder how
       many activist6 are actually certified divers, or   how many of those divers have
       been in our oceans to see for themselves what      is down there.
       I work for a pet store in Tampa. Over a year ago, we set up a reef system
                                                  e
       and a saltwater fish system in our shop. W have since sold more live rock
       than fish. After six months of watching and studying those reefs, I was
       hooked. First I began a setup on a small reef tank In my home and within six
       months I put together a larger one hundred-twenty-gallon saltwater tank.
       Then, I became a certified diver and have been learning more about our oceans
       ever since. I believe many people and companies will be extremely hurt b y this
!      ban and not only financially. Live rock has an attraction of its own; it
       contains a small world of wonders for anyone interested in the ocean and its
       inhabitants.
       Note that Uve coral and live rock ere two distinctly different species and
       should not be confused. Many divers are aware of what is happening to the
       coral and the resulting damage to the coral reefs, The harvesting of live rock
       does not endanger the reefs and is a reasonable alternative to live coral. I f
       measures must be taken, regulation of the trade may be the solution. M belief
                                                                                y
       is that a complete ban Is not necessary. M hope is that the council's decision
                                                  y
       will reflect this belief,
       Sincerely,


       Beth Hollett
        BRINE SHRIMP, INC.




             I t uas my p 1 ~ W S ~ L ~ to have a t tended t h e pub1 i c
                                              T E                                                     f o r ~ t ~ t r clri DuI:: I t:::t!y
                                                                                                                                  :
            J';,r.l~tjry G, 1'3'34.         S i r i c e t h i s was my first o p p a r - t u r ' t i t y to Iravt. a t t e n d e d
            Jn
             :e
             d      ci.f    t h e s e cclunr: i 1 f c ~ r u m s , f wc79 impressed w i t h t h e m c i n r l e r i n uh i c l , ~
            .l.ile meet ling was il:lnJ~~~:t;ed and                t h e way         1.n u h i c h a1 1 v i t3u5 were heavcl
            u:itt-i genr-tir,le interest.               I t i s my hctpe t h a t these views uj. 1 b e t a k e n      1
                    a
            ir.~t*::i c c o u n t b e f o r e ar,iy h a s t y Cjec i s i i 1 1 1 ~ are mode.

            1         1- usb band    and      I p u r c h a s e d a n ~ rist i n g uh01 es"1 I I;CIIIIFIBT.I y a b c t ~ t t ~ C I C I P .
                                                                              ;                        =

           yr.at..s a g o .         Neverr h a v i n ~ beef1         i r t h e busiinesc; be ~ ' C I I - i t ha-5- i r.lcfactj
                                                                      r                                                a,
            b s e n a l e a r n i n g e : ~ ; p e v . i e n c e . I n a d d i t i o n t c ~ e a r r , ~ i n p mi.1i.E
                                                                                           I                                 about;         .tt.\e
            m a r i n e s-,~~ecimens5     and t h e i n t r i c a c i e s o f a 1 l f a c e t s lrlf tl.1 is l u s i n e + s s , i-           :l
    )       11s beer1 C~I.IT p l C ~ ~ S L I I . OI : I
              -,                                   ~       becc~ine acqusi n t e d us t h ~nal-tyo f t h e peclpl s in
            tl-1i.j i n c l n s t r y . PI-.
                                          I   , P,avo been i n t h i s b u s i n e s z . f o r t                   i i                   l'hcir
               IT^ f atni 1 i e s a n d r r : ~ l o t s a r e h e r e . They a r e rilst: a t ~ v . c ~ uc11' p e l - ~ p l e   p
            .~..ll-l:ing f o r a q u i c k r e t u r r ~ , b u t i n m a k i n g a v i a b l e business w i t h l o n g - -
            I--.I,    a




            .term s m : u r i t y .     T h i s l z a n n s t h e actomplished i f              t h e r e is any d a n g e r trrl
                                                                                                             , ,.
            L;l.ie r e e f        system f r o m ut~il:h w e a1 1 ei3r.n ckrr 1 i v i n g .                                            ,
                                                                                                             l h e r ~ ? . F ~ : l v e please
            I;r-il:lw that. w a1 1 a r e st iriving
                                 e                                   tcl see t h a t .t;his systern i s h e a l t h y iclr
           Y ~ Z ~s .
                  T       .Lv curlre.

           Nlllrit. o f u s a r e against a rrlanagement p l a n f c ~ rt h i s fishery, Cill t r r a t we
           as+:; is t h a t i t b e dune i n t e l l i g e n t l y , w i t h i n p u t f r u r r ~ a1 l i n t e r r ; l s ; t b d
           pasties w i t h l s u t p u t t i n g t h i s g r c ~ u pelf h a r d - u c ~ r k i n g i n d i v i d u a l s out o f
           ~ I L I S I ~ I ~ S ;W~ ~ .a r e
                                ?e          mcare t h a n w i l l i n g           work; w i k h t h e ~ : a i m c i l s . L L ~
                                                                                        I

           ii~::~~:~rnpl cli.!r m u t u a l
                        ish                        gsala.        But, please d o not t'orget Lf~at w e have
           Caniil ier; and 1 i v e s b u i l t       a r o u n d t h i s res~:iLlrce ar.tcl a h a s t y bar) o n i t
           woccld d e v a s t a t e nitt v n l y t h people i n erris area b~1.t a h u g e t l c l * . ~ ~ r ~ ' ~l i h f
                                                            ~
           2 . 5i s         e t hroughclut       t h e s u n t r y and a b r odd.
                                                                ;
                                                                1                         t'13i.1need I.LI.I I. y read ,317     y
           elf t h e t vade magaz iries t o see h : w f a r - r a n g i n g t h i 5 i r ~ d u s t r y/.-la5 b e c a m e .
                                                              11

           P!: a g r u u p f ue a r e v e r y open t o u t i l iz l n y a q u a c ~ t l - 1 6 . ~ ~ a 3nblrt i t t . . ~ t e
                                                                                                u as
           f c ~ r the u i l d    I. i v t ' r ~ c k h a r v e s t .    At this         t imo,    w         t   it
           ~1:1'kn1:1mical1y ~ t l - , f e a s i b l e due t~ t h e d i f f i c u l t y i n ~:ibt;aicrilry ,the p ) . " p r r .          1-1


           p~,!~.~liittiny.   The i s c i u r f:tf     location a t     t h e p e r m i t s i s ant:~tl~tlryt-ce3.tii;,11


'       (305)fS2-5499
        %S (%do) g68-077f
        3- (305) %S2-63@9
        Post Office Drawer 6 18
        Tovernier, Florida Ke
        USA 33070
 .t;tl~:.tua&ncls ol' c f ~ . r l l a r 5and ~ I = I L         ! ~ ' I ~ ~ ~ Is s    ,   ,      1rltl:l 5 ; i t ~ h a t ; w i : l ; l r~~:,tr
                                                                                                          &       t
 ~ . ~ ~ - c ~ d ~ rinc reC.eLt*ble p r o d u c t .
                a     d                                           W Rave been t o l d
                                                                   e                                 ~ ~ e p s a t t e d l y.L;.t~at i e L
bctulr.l tie next ~ C Iirnpl:~s.;iblc. t l : ~ c ~ b t a r n l e a s e s ~;#f . t [ - ~ p e y s .
                                                                                               f        K             'This i r i , t h e '
                                                                                                                            ~:I.i:*!:jc t o
~ ~ ~ r 1 ~ y 1 : a t i o r - u h e r e r l : t r i d i t i c ~ n s a r e v i a b l e tar1 p~ociufi:~? - ~ y t ~ . l i l - t g
          il1                 I                                                                           al

uclul J
           ~r
             have
                   .
~ ~ e . tal. r An1:t-t h e r ~ t r t r . e s 0 1
                            wxcl usive
                                                       ved quest'icln i s ula~et;t.~er r ~ o t a or                 1e a s e hill1 der
                                                    r i p h t o t l - I h i f ; lease %a, t e &rld ~ I ; I U t h l ! ; CI:I~..I:L CI b e
i n s c c ~ ~ e d . W L C ~ I I I I C I ~ a-ffctrd t o i n v e s t t h o ~ t a a n d s of dr:~llar.s placlr.lg r a w
                        e
u1=4ter.  ihl       l l r i  Our        ~ . i t e f we cannot expect t o P.larvest,
                                                    i                                                           i t ;:I~A~-SE+~VF~S,
There d r e a1 so n o guide1 i n e s f l:lr t h i s prspcrsed ccndev.taL;fng.                                             N ~ i c hm l r . ~ l r . c
%.tc.rdy and data s h o u l d b e o b t a i n e d b ~ ? f a r e                     for :1 i n g t h i s e l t e r n a t ive.

Tha a l a p u t e          un    rn~tcti u i l d live rock: is a v a i I a t ? l c ; ~
                                  flow                                                shcauld b e r e s o l v e
 Pt                               t o b a n ~~~~~~~~~~rg w l t h u u t havir.?g any d a f i ~ on ti..
            seems i n l z r u d i b l s                                                                                                                   '


a . r . a i l a b i 1i t y . S t wa.5    br.ought o ~ c t in t h e meet ir~g t h a t mc~ue .kf.tan                                             r:lr.le

5 c i e n t ist b e 1 iave t h a t t 11 is v e s c l u r c e i s n c t i r l a n y irrin~ed
                                                                  n ~;                     j.ate tjanger.                                      r.li:lu.

i s i t plecr- ir.tg a n y lal;l*t@r.rer;ottrt.;e xn a n y danger.

L..irnitrd e n t r y                           tl:~ i r ~ + u r et h a t
                                               Lit' a   WPY              ~~lnly              W ~                               O ~ ~ . f ~ i' i i ~ ~
                                                                                                                           .
                                ~ 1 3 ~ 1 l r ; f                                I     :
                                                                                                                                              1
r       e      dependcrlt            on    r es~:l~l?-ce ulrl~llcJ b e harvest i r l g i t
                                               ti-ti5                                                                            Al s c ~ r i p
                                                                                                                                        t
:l ifnits I-br. week1 y 1 i n ~ i t e u l : ~ ~dl b e a1:captabl e ~ i ~ c as. ~ , *%.
                                                                                     t 1 200                                   por.~r.~dr-;
                                                                                                                                          per.
trip.        MI:IS~ o f u s irk ,the business o n 1 y go ~:~citt u a t o f o u r                                               t ima.; p e ?
week and w e on1 y 1 . 1 d r v r 5 t a s much a s wQ have I:I~ d e r s t III f i 1 1                                   .       We are frat
" L a k i n g ever y l t t i r l g i n sight" a s many w c ~ u l d l j . C : ~tct s u g g e s t .

L-JL?       i m p 1 ore y u u LIJ r e s p e c t           us   as hard--ua'ikir~g r ndividual 5 who a r e 13nly
                                                                             .. ..
t r . y i r ~ y11-1   msintain iluv l i v ~ ? l i h ~ C t d B . Ibis d c ~ e s riclt meart we ar.s.ac,laj.r~st:
air     ir-ltel1 igent , Wel 1 -.pliil~nt.d managernel->l: p l a n .                D u t b a f o ra a n y t h il'ip cart
1       managed             pr oprr 1 y ,        y u u I I I L I S ~ h a v e viable d a t a         arrd knowled:;le.
r5ovarnment does n o t tlave a r c p u t a t i o n f 13r sol i d                     marragernent,    '       5 0 pl caw
u n d e r s t 6 1 t 1 ~ 1 I-ILI~       fears.      B L I ~ as. ~ i h o w n at the nteet irig, t h e r e a r e nlerij!
              i
.ir ~Lell g e n t and infclrmwd p e c l p l o wllo can 5131v e ' t h e s e i s s u e s i f Carid o1"ll.y
i f 1) t t t e y a r u uquil~pecl w i t h t h e pvl:tpcr. data an0 t h e                   t ima t13 as:?; cln i t
i ~ . ~ t r n l l i g e n . t l y . . J u s t because      i f       seems       b e p o l i t i c a 1 J . y corl-e;:-t ' t o
                                                                                         tl-I

re.4c.ti         Ija>ty d e c isiq:q-, I              this          issue does nett        rnearr - t h a t i t i c ; .tl-ie
.j~.rtitil-',tad      cc,ccrsc ,of al:'til:~ri.

Ottr         hclmes,     1 ives a n d f ~ ~ t c aree i n
                                                ~ r                     your hands arid                   w e beseech ytrlLI          't;;:l   a!
r rcrvponsitily.
                                           \                                               My F a x 8.: n a i l
                                       -    4
                                            'Q                                             I             y    1 ,       13'3.4
BRINE SHRIMP, INC.


                       t
       T h e 1.3~1 o f M e s j c c . ~F ' i s h e r y C:c~c.~r.lcil
       1 - i n c o l r ~C : e f ' l t e v , S ~ i . 1 ; ~
                                                      331
       S-Ct:rl W. I.:'~;.nr.~edy ~ v J .    B
       'Tampa, F 1.- :35069-24f)6

       f3tZ1-I:      Ilr.   T e r r y i...t.e~*ry

       My narne is W~?ndy S ~ nt h a n d  i          I arrl emp l clyed a s n t : ~       ic.11: I ~ i 5 1 f ~ t r .
                                                                                               I

       F l o r idti B r i n n Shr. i m p , I n c . WE a r e a u k r c l : l o c ~ l c r - if       artemim,
       irldigericlcrti       cllaririe specxes arid live r o c k .                                  L i v e r~:.~t.b:
                                                                               .
                                                                                                                         ~ C C C I L \ ~ I ~ ~
       t lrrrapp r CI.r; i rr!at. u l y '50% o 1' I. i I I c ollle
                                                       I-lr..r




       I i m p l o r e y a u t c ~regulate t h i s 'fishery based W I ~ facts a n d
       f i g i ~ r e s , n c ~ t o n ~ ? m a f i o n a l panic.            The                                      -+
                                                                                 c L t r r r = ~ ~ tr ~ ~ ~ m b e ~~::II-I s
       availability                o f u i l d live rctck: ~ z l a a r l y.jh~-lw L r ~ a t. t h i s i s ric~k
       a~r endangered s p e ~ ies.              r         I r ~ e r e is- I      ~ r ~ i ei n it c
                                                                                                f         dald
       E L I P ~ I : I Y ~ a p c 1 - 3 i t j o n t h a t w i l d l i v e rctci:. is n rir:~r.1-...1~-tr1ewab1c
       resource. 1 urge                        the   I : C I L ~ I T I : ~ ~~ C p i n p o i r l t
                                                                                I                    C l ~ t rr s a c t prc.d~.ict
       being harvested,                        the  qttantities   avallat71e,                                           ar.~il   the
       replenishment r a t e .                 Regulate infell iger~lly.

       C : c ~ n s i d e r the ei:onclmic              i m p a c t o n a 1 ive roc,:: ban.       S n ~ a1l
       b u s i n a r ; j s e e & ~ r : r u s s t h e ~ z c u n t ~ yi l l b e devastated b y a h a s t y
                                                                   w
       doc iaion.              H l 1l;iw t i r f o r t h e industry
                                            m

       d r amat I C rsak i c ~ n w i d e r ise              i n unerrlpl o y i ~ t e ~ r t
       involvir.~ga l l level.= cif tlbe tllar-ir~ea q u a r iirm i n d st y .
                                                                              to I         r e .
       immediate hat't 'to w i l d 1 ive rc11:i:: c o l l e t : t i c ~ r l uill r e s c . t l C i.n a
                                                                                                      fir)

                                                                                                        yauanb:
       F I e g ~ r l a t et h e fishery.            L i m i t e d e n t r y p e r 111it.t           il-19 and d a i l y
       i:aLt:h        regulataor'r- w ~ t u l d a l l l s w a ~ : t : t n t r o l l e d I-ldrvecit. L i n l : : t h e
       r.egu1 at i o n s             t:
                                     1  1    a t i n r e S ~ ~ I w h e r e a PI-ogr-am farr tt1.c.
                                                                    I
       i i q ~ l a ~ : ut u r e C I ~ ' d12rnos.t
                        I.                       ac   rock       can b e            feasibl y i m p 1 un'bo1'1tk2d.
        h e         industry            is. e:lctrcmely r e c e p t i v v Lv t h e s u g g e s t i c ~ r ~                clf
       a q ~ l a c utlu r e a an a1 t e r n a t 1 v e tcl u i l d ro~zk: bar v e s t , however. ,
                                  :;
       a phase-in per i o d is. r e q u i r e d .                  A q u a c ~ 1I1c i r e
                                                                                     ,          p e r m i t t i r t y rrlust;
       be a t a n g i b l e thing.                  The industry              will        I I L I ~    be     able                kc1


       u I. t h s t aa.\d a 1 ag bet ween u i 1 d 1 i v c r                      k I.~ar.
                                                                                   LII,   vest: and dorrtc%t' c           i
       r.0c.k     c u l t ivet 1c.n.
L..   L
      :m i t   t h ci p e r m i t .l i rl g    u i 1 cl u. a C:: i 11%1 e c t i o 1.1 1 I.., I. t 1 clz,e w t i c:~
                                              'f o r                :1 I.
#:,an   shl;:lw that ti-ieir ir~~:orne s deponcler~t I
                                                 i                             :     tI..~a I.8rarv~{l;'t.
Feg1..11t e c a t i ; : t . i ~ ? ~ .
        a                          t  .F i f t earl     t.ic..lnr:Ir, p~:~und.i i.,er vessel per.
                                                                  ecl
clay.      A l 1 . o ~ a ~:or~t;r.~:~ll.eed t?arvczcst                t~-I c.1:1.lnt1nur;i? I                   a
t r at-lsi t; i o n i:nn Lie made f r o m ui 1 d Y ~ r . I:: LC:! dl::l(rtt'~.t.c r.dc 1;.
                                                                7                  l




Wendy S m l t h                                             c-   - __----
B i f i l c ~ g i s t , F'11:lr i d a Er-i t ~ uS h r i m p I r r c .
J A N - 1 4 - 9 4   F R I   1 5 : 3 2   S O U T H   A T L A N T I C   C O U N C I L          P    -   0 2




                                                                            JAN 1 3 1994
                                                                          SOUTH ATWJTIC FISHERY
                                                                           W E M E N T MUNCIL
M E M O R A N D U M


                                                                                                      J
                           451 1 Royal Palm Avenue         JAN 141994
                          Miami ham, FL 33140.3041
                                                         SOUTH A T W T I C FlSHERY
                                                          ~ E M E NcounclL T

                                      tc        v A uct     &&                       7%        -+
                                                                                                A&




                                                               t.                                    6-
r e j o ~ v c e,
                                            aPc          -0

                                                                           *+-
                                                                           h         c

                                                                                     Qr-
                                                                                           e

                                                                                                       f
                                                                                                     LCC
                                                                                                       fy




                      d      pro-
                                                                           A
                                                                           ,                     .sL/+YR
                           2-   -
                            F fPbd                   ,                 e , f ~ e p r e m t - ~ -

         +
     f



uu-             1 ; -      race3                                                     /
                                                                                -a[&-4.
+.            j w
              4              our
331221
J A N - 1 4 - 9 4      F R I    1 5 : 3 4           S O U T H            A T L Q N T I C       C O U N C I L
                                                                                                                            P - -0 1




             S      Craig Banning       Route   1, BQX500M Big Pine Key, Florida 33043         (305) 872-3817   i
                    0                            - PC programming        drive repair               '   .re.
                                                                                                          ;:.
                                                                                                         ..

                                    f                                                      I
                                                                                           '
                                                    p          0                 u      January      10, 1994



              South Atlantic Fishery Management Council
              1 Southgark Cir, W0'6
              Charleston, SC 29407-4699                             .,



              RE: "Liva RockM harvesting                                                                                         w
                                                                                                              J N 15 1994
                                                                                                               A
               Dear Sir/Madam:                                                                           SOUTH A T M T l C FIGHERy
                                                                                                          MANAGEMENT COUNCIL

                 I think that rocks or coral with living organisms
              attached, like all marine life, should be left in the
              ocean. How even such a seemingly mlnor disturbance -                                                  -   -

              would a f f e c t the interconnectedness o f all life camot
              be known by humane.
                    I hope you will ban live rock harvesting.
                                                                sincerely,
                                                  UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE
                                                  National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
                                                  OFFICE OF OCEAN AND COASTAL RESOURCE
                                                  MANAGEMENT
                                                  LOOE KEY NATIONAL MARINE SANCTUARY
                                                  RT. 1, BOX 782


BRIEFING BOOK
--                                     AD&~T~OFJ
                                             January 14, 1994
                                                                   n


     Roger Pugliese
     South ~ t l a n t i cFishery Management Council
                                                             TAB^                NQ.SO
     Southpark Building, Suite 306
     One Southpark Circle
     Charleston, SC         29407-4699
     Terrance Leary
     Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council
     Lincoln Center, Suite 331
     5401 West Kennedy Blvd.
     Tampa, FL   33609
     Gentlemen:
     The following comments are in regard to the draft Amendment 2 t o
     the Fishery Management Plan for Coral and Coral Reefs of-the'Gulf
     of Mexico and South Atlantic concerning the management of live
     rock. I am the manager of Looe Key National Marine Sanctuary and
     the Lower Keys Regional Manager of the Florida Keys National
     Marine Sanctuary. I am a biologist by training with a Masters
     degree, and have worked on the coral reefs of Florida as a
     researcher and manager since 1977. These comments do not reflect
     the official position of NOAA or the National Marine Sanctuary
     Program regarding the proposed options of the amendment, but are
     intended to provide additional background information that may be
     of interest in the Councils' deliberations.
     The Fishery Management Plan (FMP) for Coral and Coral Reefs
     prohibits "the destruction of corals and coral reefs1!. The draft
     amendment document refers to this, stating "The current Coral FMP
     prohibits the damaging, harming, killing, or possession of
     prohibited coral or of coral reefs. Thus, the taking of live
     rock from these sources is currently prohibitedw (p. 9). This
     statement is not accurate and should be clarified or deleted from
     the document. Most, if not all, of the current harvest of live
     rock in the Florida Keys occurs in areas defined in the FMP as
     coral reefs. It must be acknowledged that, at least in the
     Florida Keys, live rock harvest is synonymous with coral reef
     substrate harvest. Regardless of the intent of the FMP,
     regulations are being enforced only if the live rock contains
     stony corals and/or sea fans. The industry has implied that no
     collection is occurring on coral reefs, but this is not the case.
     As you know, there is much more to a coral reef than the corals
     alone. Protecting only the stony coral component of the reef is
     not providing the intended protection to this valuable ecosystem.
     Many of the coral reefs in the Florida Keys have stony coral

                  RESOURCE PROTECTION THROUGH COOPERATION WITH THZ
                      FLORIDA DEPARTMENT OF NATURAL RESOURCES
cover of 30% or less. As it is now being interpreted, the rest
of the substrate area could be harvested as live rock, as long as
no specimens of coral are attached. Thus, in many areas in the
Florida reef tract, much of the coral reef is subject to
collection as live rock. In spite of some of the testimony from
collectors, I can verify from my experience as a sanctuary
manager that live rock harvest on coral reefs is occurring in the
Florida Keys on a daily basis.
It is also stated in the amendment document that live rock
harvest consists of l1divers who selectively pick-up small pieces
from the bottomll (p. 3). This implies that the harvest is
restricted to collection of loose rubble. Again, this is not the
case. Many collectors do concentrate their efforts in the rubble
zone of the reef (note that the rubble zone is still a part of
the coral reef and is therefore covered in the Coral FMP).
However, there is a significant component of the industry that
chisels live rock from coral reef substrates to capture the non-
coral component of the coral reef community. This effort is
significant in terms of impact if not in terms of numbers of
collectors. I have personally been called upon by the Florida
Marine Patrol or the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) to
verify coral occurrence on live rock on six occasions. All but
one of these cases involved chiseled coral substrate. I- have-
been told by Florida Marine Patrol officers that they often see
chiseled substrate which contains no stony coral. This type of
live rock harvest is apparently legal and results in the direct
removal of portions of the coral reef habitat which is vital to
the viability and health of the coral reef as a whole.
The document states that there are 11600,000 tons of live rock in
the top one foot of surfacev1per square mile, and there is
"19,691 square miles of live bottom within 55 fathoms in the
Gulfa1(p. 3). These statements are totally misleading and need
to be clarified or deleted from the document. It implies that
there is essentially an unlimited supply of live rock that no
level of conceivable effort could impact. It must be pointed out
that the only rock that is of interest to the collector is at the
surface, so it doesnrt matter how deep the rock deposits are.
This is because the industry is not interested in the rock, it is
interested in whatrs growing on the rock. The misconception that
collectors are going out and picking up any rock that is laying
around is entirely false. Collectors are extremely selective and
harvest only those rocks which have the complement of organisms
which are sought after in the aquarium trade. I would estimate
that only 10% or less of surficial rocks are considered
commercially valuable as live rock, so to base calculations on
the amount of calcium carbonate substrate on the bottom is
irrelevant and suggests a lack of knowledge about the issue. In
addition, I have never observed live rock collection in deeper
than about 3 0 feet (5 fathoms) so the reference to the 55 fathom
depth contour is ridiculous.
Most of the recent debate on the live rock issue has focused on
the rubble zone of the reef. As previously stated, many
collectors imply that this is the only area where harvest is
occurring. This is incorrect; there is substantial harvest
pressure within all types of coral reef habitats (see above).
Therefore, the rubble zone issue should not dominate discussion
and cloud the much more serious issue of direct coral reef
substrate removal from the non-rubble components of the reef
ecosystem. However, a large percentage (up to 40% based on some
estimates) of the harvest does occur in the rubble zone. Again,
it must be pointed out that the rubble zone is an integral
component of the coral reef and is included in the definition of
coral reef in the FMP. Thus there is some question whether such
activity should already be prohibited by the FMP. Regardless,
the industry maintains that the rubble zone is essentially a
barren area of no particular importance to the reef ecosystem and
can sustain appreciable harvest over time. The rubble zone is
certainly less diverse and aesthetically pleasing than the other
coral reef zones, but it is very important to the coral reef
nonetheless. The unconsolidated nature of the rubble zone
provides habitat for a wide variety of small invertebrates and
plants that serve as a food source for fish and larger
invertebrates who reside in other areas of the reef. Anyone who
says that the rubble zone is barren and lifeless has never - -
visited these areas at night. The rubble zone at Looe Key, which
I am very familiar with, literally Itcomes alivew at night as a
host of fish species and invertebrates, predominantly spiny
lobster, come off the main part of the reef to forage and feed in
the rubble zone. Many of the things that they are feeding on are
those targeted by the live rock industry.
Another reason why rubble areas are important is that in times of
rising sea level (as we are in now), coral reefs "step backw on
themselves to keep up with rising water levels, The rubble zone
provides a substrate for the recruitment of coral species and
other reef organisms. This is very obvious at Looe Key where the
most significant recruitment of young corals (especially
branching species) is occurring, not on the reef slope and reef
flat, but in the rubble zone. Studies suggest that coral
preferentially recruits onto substrate that has I1curedw,i.e. has
developed an initial complement of other bacteria, organisms,
etc., and does not readily recruit onto fresh substrate.
Therefore, continual removal of rock which exhibit a level of
growth of various organisms (which is what is targeted for
aquaria) may affect future settlement of coral species.
Geological studies at Looe Key have shown that the original
topographic feature on which Looe Key reef first formed thousands
of years ago is considerably seaward of the present active reef-
The present reef is built upon a layer of rubble, which overlies
unconsolidated sand. Thus, the future Looe Key reef will be
located on the present rubble zone.
The industry maintains that rubble rock collection could never be
substantial enough to have the biological or geological impacts
suggested above. In absence of data, this is very difficult to
quantify and it is admittedly difficult to notice a change in
collected areas on a day to day basis. However, it is the long
term cumulative effect which is of concern. It is also important
to note that live rock collection is concentrated in a relatively
limited area, and a few certain reefs (Sombrero, American Shoal,
Alligator, Tennessee) receive most of the pressure. When
considered in this context, the impact could be significant.
In summary, live rock collection, as it is currently being
practiced, is harmful to the coral reef ecosystem and results in
the direct removal of coral reefs and reef habitat (if not the
coral species themselves) from the Florida reef tract. The
protection of habitat is the single most important thing that a
fishery management entity can do to manage and conserve fish
stocks and ecosystem health. Chiseled live rock from coral reefs
is extremely destructive and is currently legal under the Fishery
Management Plan. If nothing else results from this amendment
exercise, I urge the Councils to prohibit the removal of coral
reef substrate if any part of the substrate must be broken in
order to collect it. No tools of any sort should be allowed. If
coral reefs are to be protected, as suggested in the Fishery- -
Management Plan, then live rock harvest should be prohibited in
coral reef areas. Currently, the best maps of coral reef
occurrence are those published by the Minerals Management Service
and developed by Marszalek, et al. The areas defined in this map
series as coral reef should not be available for live rock
harvest. The Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary, in
conjunction with the State of ~lorida,is in the process of
developing new benthic habitat maps which will be very detailed.
The maps will be completed within the next two years and could
supplant the current MMS maps.
Thank you for the opportunity to comment on this proposal. I can
be reached at (305) 872-4039 or (305) 872-3860 (fax).




                                 Kpm
                                  Georqe P. Schmahl



cc:   Billy Causey, FKNMS
      Jennifer Wheaton, FMRI
      Danny Riley, DMR
~ ~ 1 ~ - 1 4 -F F I
               9 4      1 1 5 5 6      SOUTH             H A T L N T I C            C O U N C *
                                                                                                          '
                                                                                                          =
                                                                                                          I
                                                                                                          .   1 1




                                                                    UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE
                                                                    N a t l o W Ocrrnic end Btmorpherio Adminlstretion
                                                                   OFFICE OF OCEAN AND COASTAL RESOURCE
                                                                   MANAOEMENT
                                                                   LOOE KEY NATIONAL MARINE SANCTUARY
                                                                   RT,1, BOX 782
                                                                    810 PINE KEY. FL 33043


                                                            January        14,     1994

       Roger Pug liese
       South Atlantic Fishery Management Council
       Southpark Building, Suite 306
       One Southpark Circle
       Charleston, SC   29407-4699

       Terrance Leary
       Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council
       Lincoln Center, Suite 331
       5 4 0 1 West Kennedy Blvd.
       Tampa, FL ' 33609
       Gentlemen:
                                                                                                  -   -

       The following comments are in regard to the draft Amendment 2 to
       the Fishery Management Plan for Coral and Coral Reefs of the Gulf
       of Mexico and South Atlantic concerning the management of live
       rock. I am the manager of Loo6 Key National Marine Sanctuary and
       the Lower Keys Regional Manager of the Florida Keys National
       Marfne Sanctuary. I am a biologist by t r a i n i n g with a Masters
       degree, and have worked on the coral reefe of Florida as a
       researcher and manager since 1977. These comments do not reflect
       the official position of NOAA or the National Marine Sanctuary
       Program regarding t h e proposed options of the amendment, but a r e
       intended to provide additional background information that may be
       of interest in the Councilse deliberations.
       The Fishery Management Plan (FMP) f o r Coral'and coral Reefs
       prohibits "the destruction o f corals and coral reefsw. The draft
       amendment document refers to this, s t a t i n g "The current Coral FMP
       prohibits the damaging, harming, killing, or possession of
       prohibited coral or o f coral reefs. Thus, the taking of live
       rock from these sources is currently prohibitedn (p. 9). This
       statement is not accurate and should be clarified or deleted from
       the document. Most, if not all, of the current harvest of live
       rock in the Florida Keys occurs in areas defined in the FMP as
       coral reefs. It must be acknowledged that, at least in the
       Florida Keys, live rock harvest is synonymous with ooral reef
       substrate harvest. Regardless of the intent of the FMP,
       regulations are being enforced only i f the live rock contains
       stony corals and/or sea fans. The industry has implied that no
       collection is occurring on coral reefe, but this is not the case.
       As you know, there I s much more to a coral r e e f than the corals
       alone. Protecting only the stony coral component of the reef is
       not providing the intended protection to this valuable ecosystem.
       Many of the coral reefs in the Florida Keys have stony coral

                    RESOURCR PROTtiCTION THROUGH COOPERAl'ION WITH THE
                         mr morn.   nno* brumwr n u U a t r l P A r D n C f W r P P I C
J Q N - 1 4 - 4 4   F R I    15:55       S O U T H   Q T L e N T I C    C O U N C I L




                                                                            January, 11,
               Rear Council:
                     I n r e a d i n g t h e article r e f e r i n s t o the removing of the
                 l i v e r o c k s from t h e bottom o f the ocean has me rather
                 disturbed.            It also makes m wonder about t h e people who
                                                           e
                 feel t h a t t h e y have t h e right to just help themselves to
                 p a r t s of the ocean. The ocean is not like a c r a b . were upon
               it looses one of it's claws, and i n time a new one Grows
              b a c k . This is not t h e case w i t h t h e ocean f l o o r . The removal
              of l i v e rock is detrimental t o t h e oceans s u r v i v a l . when
              something is picked at slowly t h e results a r e not seen r i g h t
              away. B u t over time i t is very e v i d e n t that picking away
              repeatedly i 3 not the r i g h t t h i n g t o do, but then it is to
              late. Our f o r e s t s are case i n point. i n c l u d i n s the rain
              forests around t h e world. They say t h a t the raping o f our
              land and sea's our done for t h e good of t h e people. Well this
              person s a y ' s don't do m any f a v o r s . I 8s well a s a n y o t h e r
                                                  e
              concerned human b e i n g knows d a r n well t h a t it is done f o r
              capital gain f o r a select few. These few do not care t h a t
              t h e y make t h e i r living o f f o f death e n d destruction o f our
              good e a r t h . And I say our! e a r t h , n o t j u s t theirs. So
              enclosing -1 say l e a v e mine and everybody elses e a r t h alone.
                  S t o p now t h e removal o f the living rock b e f o r e the floor o f
              t h e ocean resembles our deserted f o r e s t s .                             --
                                                            Thank you,
                                                         Adrienne Kutnsr
                                                           1360 97th Street
                                                         Bar H a r b o r Island, Fla.
                                                                            33154
BRIEFING BOOK ADDITIO1":



                           JAN 15 1994
                       SOUTH ATLANTIC F ISWERY
                        W E M E N T COUtlCIL
     - ---
J A N - 1 4 - 9 4
             .
                      T A 1' N6:2(76)
                          F R I
                             3
                             ~
                                  1
                                      .-
                                           5   5   5   0   S O U T H   R T L A N T I C




 BRIEFING BOOK A D D I T I O N $ m c ~ ~ ~
                    i
                                                                                           J A N 14 1994
                                                                                         SOUTH ATlANTlC FISHERY
                                                                                          MANAGEMEHT COUNCIL



                                                           P.O. Box 712
                                                       Tavemier, F1.33070
                                                         305-852-4955
                                                       Fax 305-85213500

        To:The Ouif and South Atlantio Fishory Management Councils


        Dear Council membtis,
                                                                                                   -   -
        As a harvostm of live rosk and the owncr and operator or r wholrrJlo tropical i a h
        business in the Kwyh l'd likc to encourage you to rewnsidsr your p e m t popitions on the
        hture of live w k harvest in tho Florida K y s Thc ptefaroaao of the SAFMC to
        imdiaIely olose thc hamest upon paasgo of this amawndment seems a bit h m h given
        the circumstances. I don't sac any reason to pursue this position ~d it suprise8 me you
        are even considering iL Even your orrn cconomiat crhovmte %e economic gedon or
        the ammendment sug&ested a mrrmlted hawest instead of immediate clo8ure (Psner
        23 and 2 9 .

        gve_red the aqpndment nsvervl times and am aumzsd thnt o govarzqnent n ~ e m
        would ~roduce   such a flawed ~ i w of work-and w e ft b d a r n s a ledtj~nnte
                                              e                                            &hem
        end to wrf0ullv d b m t r major bdustn such WI the marine aawduhr trade. If
        you continue on this course, doztnn of Aahcrmen will be in scrious financial trouble, and
        hundr*          perhap thousands, ofpet hops, w h o l ~ m mculutbauraa will fcel
                                                                and
        significant financial louses as the price vlbrwkskyockets and rvaifabiIity gocm way down
        Live rock hon~   Florida is In many ways the boc.khpao of marina aquarium trade and
        any scrioua disruption in it's availability will ~ w .dew problems.
                                                               o

        Stverpl optlong arc r v ~ b l to vou and I would suggat YOU purauc one that ullow~
                                       e
        for a m ~ e h d a t which could smtain the tmdt until an dtenutlve L fuwld
                           m
        You seem to be pushing hard for aquaculture as the wfution, but how ran you cxpud US to
        go this route when the Statc DER up until now L saying "don't b o k to apply for a
        dredge m i fill permit i the Keys". Thia fishuy is primarily bwcd in the Koys and thnt is
                  c             n
        what we will need to ba able to have our leases if we it i to survive hero. I know h i t
                                                                 s
        some lxanchcrc of thc FI. Dept of Environmental Prottction Agency are gung ho h u t
        aquauultue, but not dl have can@ Ihs fwer and ar a rrrult thcrc's still no t&clhmd of
        getringthe needed pennits in the Koyr. Savoral applications arc now going ttuuugh the
        prows for leases in the Keys, but until oric is grated with dl ticcessq pornrib ,idon't
J Q H - 1 4 - 9 4     F R I    1 5 : 5 1    S O U T H     Q T L Q N T I C     C O U N C I L         P .       0 4
                                                                                                          -




         see how iou cca call it an aption end fmce i on us. I would like to see you bRae any
                                                     t
         closure ( phase out on the success of thesc individuals getting their pmnits and also on
                   I
         the marketability of thck product To data there k no reliable estirm\to as to how long it
         will take to produce a good quality, markdtablo rock on an open water lease sito in the
         Kep. I Qlink the amendments figure of six montllv t a couplo yem may be a bit wishful.
                                                             o

         Mv recummendation for the mnn.acemellt of live rock would be along the lines of
                                                                     --

                                       td
         option C. 1. n or C.1.b aa br on ~ a p %,ofthee       amendment andcxplrihed latar in the
         text. If an annuai quote system is d o p t d I would suggest that tho ouotn be divided UP
         lnto jnoaths or aaPrtan 80 thnt thc herve~t      cauld be rpremd awC over the ycw. 1
         would pefw optiun b which is t limit a c d o f f o r t . You wuld limit acccsn by requiring
                                          o
         a special pernrit and only Lssue ~ e d t b those fndivldalals who have reported Uve
                                                     s
         p c k lsndln~s the last ye= 'h would aop and growth innumben nrd would
                         in                I L
         eliminate those individuals who have not k e n rcpodinp. yuu could dao ltmn eRolt by
         restrlctlnnthe d a y harvest amount similar to what tile State of Florida did ia their
         proposed phase out. In t i uptiorr you could atso havo a provision to reduce the daily
                                   hs
         tako of wild live rock as aquacultured m k began to bs hmcskd so that tho= individuals
         who can't aord to get an aquacuh~rc     lease could still hervost a small amount of livc rock
         (200 l pa day) ror b i r custo~nenThis d u c c d k c a t would a h help prtrvidu t e
                b                                                                                h
         ntomary base rock (rubblu rock) for starzing and maintaining IICW systems. I think it is
         imperative that you dlow suma f' of wild h w u t until w lrquacuhurc industry is
         established a d ie producing a flnctianal substitute for notwd base rock.

        1 walizo the pressure C going to tw on you to yield to pressure fiom tbc SW of Florida
        and vote their way, What and who is driving Ulem to push this iss\te like they arc ir
        beyond me. Do thcv (or you fvr hi.        matter) rtanv bcUevc t b t thc part timt effuda
        of 40 to SO conu~ium     wurldng out of 20 faat b o m b arc redly noinn to hgva m  n
        tmpact on a resource that coven hundmde of rauare db d conaida attrillform
        oftons ofrock? What are they uwnlplislling by chis chslo? Who do they think
        they're kidding? There are a lat dpcrople depending on you to w a g e filhcrics and
        aquatic raourcea based on sound scirnlilic: data and methods not anotionafism m    d
        political pressure, If you don't h v e sound data than look into mttinn some. There i~ na
        immediate danger of ~ n n i n out 4live rock so there is time to at lcast do wmo basic
                                       g
                                                      w
        studies on it. Have cm indtytadent analyst I k at it and see if he can givo you a bcttcr
        p*sprctivc. Don't blindly believe the "ex~ert            flndinplw from the State of
          0i . .
         E tda




                                                                       Ken Nedimyer V
                                                                        Sea Lice Inc.
 .JAN-14-94



         FROM :   $*
                                F R I    15:52



                       $REEF SYSTEMS I I INC, ? V V
                                                      S O U T H   Q T L A N T I C

                                                                         TAB
                                                        PHONE NO. : 305 252 3618
                                                                                      horn
                                                                                    cOEc EG,)
                                                                                            Jan.   14   iat;   : ~ : J ~ P Y F2:




                                                                                     Mr a   W a l i d Al-Kahtany
                                                                                     1 5 4 1 Brickell avenue
                                                                                             - - - -



BRIEFING BOOK ADDlTlO                                                                 partment 3 2 0 1
                                                                                      i a r n i , F l a r i d e 33131
                                                                                     January 3 r d , 1994


           Roger P u g l i e ~ e
           South Atlantic F i s h e r y Management Council
           One Southpark Circle, S u i t e 306
           Charleston, S I C m 29407-4699


           Dear Mr. Puglieset

           This letter is written in concern and i n .protest of the propoeed
           c l o s i n g o f Mlive-roct'li n federal waters o f the ~ o u t ha t l a n t i ~ . -
           I fee1 personally that there I s a great deal o f knowladgo.-bo bo gained
           from the keeping o f living reef aquariums. he building blocks of
           those aquariums i s the l i v i n g rock. However, i f l i v e rock collecting
     i     io closed in federal waters i t would t a k e sway the paesibilities of
           o t h e r persons like myself uho could benefit educationally.
.,
           The first hand lcnowledge gained from r living reef aquarium 18
           definitely much more comprehensive than watching one of the " n a t u r e
           series" on televieion. Mr. Pugliese, as an a g u a r i s t I s i n c e r e l y feel
           t h a t q u a l i t y w l i ~ e - r ~ c k t lindespensible t o a living reef aquarium
                                                   is
           end it is a r e s o u r d , b h a t ehould be managed 8 6 a fisheries.
           Mr. Puglieee,            S          l(
                                        truly h)      that your judgement w i l l be f a i r t o a l l t h e
           partiee involved.



           Sincerely,
J A N - 1 4 - 9 4       F R I    1 5 : 4 9    S O U T H     A T L A N T I C       C O U N C I L                P.01
                                                                                                                   -

                                                                   TAB                         NO,S(-~$
                                                                         Keith Black
                                                                                       ism
BRIEFING BOOK ADDIT                                                                    75044
                                                                                       70



             The South Atlmtic Pishay Managcmcnt Council
             Arm: Roger Puglise
             1 South& Circle
             Southpdc Building,Suite 306
             Charlestog SC 294074699

                                                                                                 JAN 1 3 1994
             January 1 1, 1994                                                                 SOUTH A W N T I C FISHERY
                                                                                                M E M E N 1 COUNCIL

             Dear Fishery Management Council,
                                                                #Live R a k fiom the coastal waters
             I am writing this letter in support o the cdledrdron
                                                 f                                                      - .

             of the United States.
             I am not associated with the a u r u industry so I am not bias due to any financial
                                           qaim
             benefit.
             I like many others have been enlightened to the importance of the life under the sea by
             having the opportunity to see beauti aquarium displays. All of the aquarium keepers
             that I know have a love for animsl life and are very concerned about the presemation of
             ow aquatic environments.
             1 advocate lii'tations and regulations of collection of =a life,but think that a complete
             ban is inappropriate. What m s people don't realize is how insignificant an s e c t live
                                          ot
             rock collection bas on our oceans when compared to boating, dumping, and the pollution
             and damage that is caused by 6-s     for food sources.




             My sincere thanks for your consideration,
             K i h Mac$
              et
j , q ~ - 1 4 - 9 4   F R I    1 5 : 5 3      S O U T H   A T L G N T I C   C O U N C I L           P .    0 7

                                                                                                o?yEliti         )
                                                                                                                 ,
                                                                                                           5     3

          I
              . . a




                1,
                      fEllAM0 RT~SBU;~J~-~~RACLE
                        a
                      RT. WILLIAM PENN HWV.
                      MONROEVlLLEI PA I S M
                                            W #W
                                                                            JAN 141994
                                                                                            u
J R N - 1 4 - 9 4   F R I     15:54          S O U T H   A T L A N T I C   C O U N C I L   P .    O C
                                                                                           PaCf    a2


                    P T N Pi; :% . . , ,.,.,4.-2E
                     EU D                           IW
                    RT. 22 WILLIAM PENN HW.
                    MONROEVILLE. PA l i  5U
J A N - 1 4 - 9 4   F R I   15:55   S O U T H   A T L Q N T I C   C O U I ~ C I L
                                             OCEAN VOICE INTERNATIONAL
                                                  883 Otterson Drive
                                            @        wa, Ontario K I V 7B2, CANADA
                                                B1) 99p2207 Fax: (613) 521-4205
                                                 03
                                        I
                                        I
                                                         4-"
                                    l4  i   4991ruun.J
The South Atlantic Fishery Management Council
Southpark Building, Suite 306
1 Southpark Circle
Charleston, South Carolina 29407-4699
U. S.A. Fax: 803-769-4520               !

Dear Coucil:
 hs
federal waters.
                                   1
Proposed Closure of Wild Live Rbck i Florida
                                    n
                                                                                         --
T i fax commerrts on the propose closure of the collection of Florida wild live rock in US.
                                        I
Ocean Voice International ( - Voice) is a non-profit environmental o r p i a t i o n registered
                               0
as a charitable organization with Ryenue Canada. Incorporated in 1987 as International
Marinellfe Alliance Canada, it changed its name three years ago to Ocean Voice Lnte~national. isIt
dedicated to the conservation of m h h e biodiversity and to ecologically sustainable and equitable
                                             ce
marine resource harvesting- ~ c e a n l ~ o iachieves is goals through research, education and
                                                       t
training. It has published a quarterly bulletiq Sea Wmd,since 1987. It has worked with other
                                       C ,
international organizations such as N N World Wddlife Fund and the Center for Marine
Conservation It is currently rmz&g the-productionof a status report on coral reef fishes of the
                                                    od w .
world and has just published a man&& Save our c r r s Directors of Ocean Voice include,
                                    d
amongst othaq marine scientists d coastal management biologists who have served in many
countries and who have been activ{.in the negotiations for the htemational Convention on
Biological Diversity, and one who reviewed drafts of the recently published Global M&ne
Eologiud Divdity Strategp.          1
                                    I

                                   d
Ocean Voice has been iuvolved in ,evelopingkologically sustainable methods of harvesting
m r n aquarium fishes for the last seven years. ~ & r m s eof this we are aware of the economic,
  aie
educationJ, conservation and enviionrnental aspects of the m r n aquarium industry, We have
                                                                aie
developed and are cunently carryide out a p r o p for the sustainable hawest of coral reef fishes
with the training of aquarium fish collectors, the establishment of marine reserves, and education
                            s .s
                             h
of coastal ~ o ~ u n i t i eT i &ledge       of the aquarium industry should not be corrtmed as our
being spokespersons foi that i *n.        It is to my chagrin that I admit that we have received v q
little financial or other support fiom the ornamental fish industry. Most of our funding has come
fiom governments, members and donors, as well as from the volunteered t m of Ocean Voice
                                                                               ie
directors.

Ocean Voice's views on wild life r k may be summarized as follows:
                                   9"
                                         I
1. Wild live rock can harvested so & to have a very low impact on the marine emironment.

2. Live rock is vital to sustainins viible marine ecosystems in aquaria, creating habitat, supplying
microbiota and buffering action.
                                        I

3. Although live rock may have sdled larvae of sessile invertebrates including those of soft and
hard coral, such micro-larvae should not result in labelling live rock as "coral." Most reef
invertebrates nonnally have very nuherous planktonic larval stages. The removal of larvae (as
opposed to those adults some of wl$ch are many decades old) is normally of little ecological
consequence as filter feeders remove enormous numbers.
                                        i

4. The use of live rock in m r n abuarium industry produces educational and economic benefits.
                            aie

5. The volume of live rock harvest# is a tiny taction of that available in the oceans, and is much
less than that used for construction of quays or other coastal structures or destroyed by other
human activities such as sewage disposal, runoff from agriculture, etc.
                                        I
Ocean Voice believes that the hamelst of wild live rock can be environmentallyviable where:
                                                                                             -
                                    i
1. Rocks are collected at sites whe F they are vev numerous and where the hamest rate will
remove only a tiny percentage of the available.rock.
                                                                                                 -




2. Where the ecosystem is healthy k d there are no endangered species.

3. Where environmentally wise andl piactid regulations are drawn up with harvesters input. For
consideration are: the number of coFectors i limited commesurate w t the suupply; where a
                                           s                      ih
collector is liscenced to solely collyt at a given site@);the wild rock wllected is identified with

                                    k
the collector's liscence, and a log is ept of the number of rocks harvested fiom each collecting
site. Our view is that the more that e harvesters of marine resources are involved and made
responsible, the more likely it is thd the regulations will be respected rather than evaded.
                                     I

The Australian marine aquarium dsi regulations are quite sensible. One collector is liscenced to
                                       e
collect fishes at a given site. Ifthe p is looked after, not ovehawested or damaged by the
                                            hs
collector, then the liscence is renewabIe. T i avoids the tragedy of the commons, where
everyone tries to maximbe their oatbh ffom r common fisbing ground. T e culture of artificial M
                                                                          h                      e
rock does represent another method of producing live rock for marine aquaria. We have written
about artificial live rock in Sea wink. -Art  h e rock has its advantages and disadvmges. It
too m s be subject to environmentally w s and practical regulations so it will not impact the
     ut                                  ie
environment.

Should you wish fhther input, we y y be reached at the above f number. We would appreciate
                                                              k
receiving the draft ammendment to ,the Coral Management Plan.



              Don E.McAUister, + h . ~ .
President, Ocean Voice ~atanationk   Co-chair IUCN SSC Coral Reef Fish Specialist Group;
               Senior Biodiversity Advisor, Canadian Museum of Nature
                                    I
                                              28 I d e n t i c a l Letters ~ e c e i v e d


Dear Sir,

      It has been brought to my attention that you arc considering the
destruction of your recf system through the heinous harvesting of live
mck. 1 am aga~nst p&ctice on several grounds.l'hc ethical grounds
                      this
involve thc profiteering of a few heartless souls at the expense of cveryone
else is in this day perhaps the least persuasivc. One must understand that
the living organism that are being destroyed take an enormuus length of
 time to regenerate.
      From a business sense the loss of habitat to feed the many fish that live
in these area will ultimately cost fisherman thcir bounty as well as the
obvious obliteration of recreational scuba diving. Your corn~l~ul~ityno   will
longer attract the many tourist who visit to sharc these benefits in
controlled and carcfully managed programs. 'l'he charter boats will necd
to find othcr oceans to fish, thc scuba diver o h depths to pondcr, the
motel industry will be as barren as the bottom of your stretch of sea, the
restaurants will no longcr have fish to wrve which is probably just a well s
since there will be 110visitors to feed.
    Thc argument that these area c a n be pillaged at no worry of the loss is
patently short sighted as you can see. The consolation that they can
regrow ignores the fact that it takes a year for a coral branch to grow an
inch. If it is so easy to grow thc living rock that is the base of the ecosystem
let us suggest that the few wanton exploiters grow their own in aquariums
desigrlrd L facilitate heir particular brand of capitalism.
             o
     I hope that i this caw you can see that the benefits of totally
                   n
protecting thc living organisms which house and feed not only othcr
creatures o the sea but y o u ~ l v c s well is absolutc and that you will
             f                         as
take every step necessary to stop the harvesting o live rock.
                                                      f


                                                                                       \




                                                                                 /--




                     04
        BRIEFING 5 0 kfl hDDDT18N
                         ~
                       TROPICAL       FISH WORLD,            INC   19198726385                          P,01
                             I




January, 1 4 ,     1994

The Gu l f o f Mexico F
                                                I I      ent Counci 1 i 1
Attn;    T e r r y Leary
                                 i
L i n c o l n Center, S u i t e 331
5401 West Kennedy 8 1 vkl.
Tampa, FL 33609
FAX ( 8 1 3 )   225-3015
                                 I
To Whom, E v e r I t May Cancer-n:                                                            -    -


                                 I
I   h a v e been i n v o l v e d /in r e e f - k e e p n g b o t h as a hobby and a s a
b u s i n e s s f o r t h e las4 n i n e y e a l s .     B o t h t h e economic and
e d u c a t i o n a l v a l u e s h y e p l a y e d an i m p o r t a n t r o l e i n m y 1 i f e ,
e s p e c i a l l y w i t h my priesent s t a f u s as P r e s i d e n t o f T r o p i c a l
F i s h w o r l d , Inc.             aleigh, N r t
                                71
                                                P
Over t h e last n i n e y e a r s , I hake e e n t h e s a l e s o f 1 i v e r o c k
 i n c r e a s e dramaticall)!.            I n 199?, y b u s i n e s s a l o n e sold o v e r
5 , 0 0 0 pounds of 1 i v e [ r o c k , genera i n g an income o f o v e r
                                                t
$30,000 f o r F i s h Worlld. B u t t j i s i s n o t t h e most i m p o r t a n t



                                               s
l ~ i l m b e r t o b e c o n s i d e e d . morei i m l o r t a n t l y , t h i s 1 i v e r o c k
                                     3
g e n e r a t e d approximately $ 2 5 0 , 0 0 f t h e $750,000 w o r t h o f d r y
goods and s a l t w a t e r Isales F i s W r l d received d u r i n g the
1 9 9 3 f iical y e a r !          Wiithout t h e , r e ulated h a r v e s t o f l i v e
r-ock, n o t o n l y would r i y s t o r e              e r b u t so w o u l d a 1 a r g e


                                I
m a j o r i t y o f t h e aqua i u n ~ . a n d
t h e United S t a t e s .
                                                     I
                                                        tores located throughout


The o t h e r p o i n t w h i c l needs t o be s t r e s s e d is t h e e d u c a t i o n a 1
v a l u e t h a t my stor-e,                   i t a s reef tank, o f f e r s t o
                                                         y r e e f t a n k has p r o v i d e d an
                                                           t h e l o c a l schools and
                                                         l e l y d e p e n d e n t on 1 i v e r o c k
                                                         a i d s i n t h e f iltt-at i o n o f
                                                         s o f life, between t h o ages

                                                           1 c o r a l r a n d ns l t x a t e r
                                                                environment.              and
                                                                       s c h o o l s h a v e corn0
t o our s t o r e by                                                     about and o b s e r v e
this l i v i n g                                                          response
                                                                          so i n c r e d i b l y
                       TROPIC9L      F I S H   WORLD,   I N C   19198720385
                             1




                                I
wastofu1 h a r v e s t , n : g qP 1                                  t h i s 1 l v e ruck
wou i d d e s t r o y t h e ah i l i t y t.o             s r ~ c h an educational
                                1
tool, w i l i c h 1 s necesgar.y i n                       an a w a k e n i n y f o r t h e
env i r o n m c n t a 1 concer'q i n                         y o u n g and old.

                                                    to d i s c u s s i s t h e
                                                    or-ida Keys.        T h i s i s an
                                                     know 1 edge and manabernen.L
could t h e o r e t i c a l l y                     ly, i f used in conjunctio~,,
with the ~-e~qulatad                                                   Pleaso b o awar-o
tl-~nt  tt\&rsu a r e
a q a u c ~ r l t u r ecan
Time it o f
doas not




                                                    be en immediate s o l u t i o n to
                                                         I s t t - o n g l y feel t h a t
                                                       l i v e rock i s n o t t h e
                                                              With regulated
                                                              l y col lect r o c k
                                                              any harm o r
                                                                       harvesting,
                                                                         might p r o v i d e




issue !




P r e s i d e n t , Tt-opical
                                       WETSPORTS
                                      21 Dustin Cove
                                    Jackson, TN 38301
                                       901/427-7175
January 14, 1994

 uf
G l of Mexico Fishery
Management Council
Lincoln Center Suite 331
Tampa, F'L 3360992468

            s
Dear Mr or M :

I am writing this letter to express my concern over the harvesting of live rock in the G l of
                                                                                        uf
Mexico. Part of my concern is seen through the eyes of my eight year old son . It is
evident to this child that reefs that are seen by me, my wife, and our students will never be
seen by him. If this harvesting continues our dream of diving as a f@ in the G l of uf
Mexico will only be a dream. T i same child wnfionted the principal of his school in an
                                   hs                                                           -   -


effort to get student support for saving the Deatin reef system. If an eight year old can
catch a glimpse of the future, what dots that say for us as adults who allow this senseless
tragedy to occw?

Next, I would like to bring up economics. Has anyone stopped to examine the economic
impact that the reefs play to the cities along the Gulf of Mexico? For example, I issued
 102 PADI certification8in 1993. The economic impact of those divers, assuming they
make one Irip to the Gulf, as follows:
                             is

1. Boat fees paid to dive boat operatois      $8,160 assuming 2 days of diving.
2. Hotel and Motel accommodatione            $27, 540 assuming 3 nights at $90 per night
3. Meals                                       $7,650 assuming 3 days @ $25.00 per day
                                              $43,350 Total

I am assuming an average based on the spending patterns of my students. But thc point
remains the same. When-thereefs are gone the divers and fisherman wl go elsewhere.
                                                                      il
How can dive boat operators repay their loan at the bank with no divers? How can the
charter boat operators borrow money to live through the wintcr without the prospect of
businas in the spxing?

In conclusion, you have to make the decision as to whether you would rather sell your
future for profits now or preserve your future and profit now and later!




 ark FutreIl
PADI MI-50852
Submitted by Julian Sprung, B.Sc. 1988, University of Florida.

1662 Lincoln Ct. # 308
Miami Beach, FL 33139
Phone: 305-874-8581
Fax: 305-661-0611

I am an internationally recognized biologist, author, consultant, and specialist in the biology,
taxonomy, growth and propagation of corals, and in the creation of living ecosystems in captivity.
My livelihood depends on the marine aquarium hobby, so naturally I am concerned about the
fate of live rock harvest. 1 am not a live rock collector, though I have observed and collected live
rock with collectors here in Florida. I am presently setting up an aquaculture facility, a "Coral
Farm", where I plan to grow live rock and other reef life for the marine aquarium hobby and for
replenishment of live corals in damaged reef sites. My farm would benefit economically by the
ban of live rock harvest. Nevertheless, I am opposed to the ban because 1 believe that the
harvest of live rock is harmless to the environment.
   molt h a ~ v o o heo a l'~pu(aliol1
Liv~                t                            I ~abilat
                                         i~~vulvi~ry     bi0311U   ~ ~ U ILL .ia
                                                                           I                       3141 IIVW
                                                                                   c e a y tu UIIJUI   IU
such harvesting from the reef can be perceived as destructive. In the 1970's Jacques Y.
Cousteau showed pictures of Maldlves Islandsa     residents carrying huge blocks of limestone taken
from the reef for use in constructing roads and houses. Cousteau warned that this activity
threatened their very livelihood since the reef they were removlng was the only buffer to protect
them against the fury of the sea in the event of powerful storms. This image sticks in our minds,-
end when the figures of how many hundreds of tons of live rock are taken from fubbla areas
surrounding reefs for our hobby are given, then it is easy to imagine ruthless individuals uslng
dynamite to blast away huge chunks of reef, thus destroylng what took eons to build, simply to
earn a few bucks and please some rich hobbyist in a distant land. This image is a myth in the
 minds of emotionally charged environmentalists, who simply are unaware of the facts involving
 live rock collectlon and coral reef ecology.

The rocks are not blasted or dredged from the reef. It is far more pradlcal to harvest rock that
has already broken loose from the reef during storms, and accumulated in rubble or shingle
piles. The constant wave-driven tumbling of the rocks, in combination with the action of boring
and grazing organisms, ultimately reduces much of the rock to sand. Rocks are selected for their
shape. size and types of growths occurring on them. Only some of the rock in a given area is
suitable, so the habitat is not destroyed, and any method other than picking the rocks up one by
one would be wunterproductlve, as It would lack selectivity, and would break the rocks. These
rocks, by the way, do not take long to grow. Most are chiefly composed of the
skeletons'of Acropora and Porites hard corals, which are among the fastest growing types (up to
15 crn (6 in.) per year; Veron. 1986). An average size rock might only represent two
to three years of original coral growth, and a year or more subsequent
growth after the coral died. Also included in the rocks taken are the large
shells of dead Conchs and the aggregates of coralline algae, sand,
sponges, and calcifying tube worms, any of which can produce substantial
solid mass in a few years. These rocks are not produced on a geologic
time scale, as is commonly mis-perceived because of the confusion arising from the name
"rock', and confusion over the difference between the slow net growth of a coral reef and a reefs
fast gross production of calcium carbonate. Reefs are more akin to giant slow
growing trees, and live rocks are like leaves, seeds and twigs that the trees
shed on a regular basis. They are a renewable resource. If they were not, reefs
could not exist because there are far greater destructive forces (storms and mechanical erosion,
bioerosion, and grazing by herbivores) than live rock harvest. In my opinion. the impact of the
hawest of live rock falls well within the range of natural destructive effects on coral reefs. What
we are talking about is merely "background noise" level of impact, hardly worth making so much
of a fuss about. More hardbottom could be saved by legislating parrotfish to quit munching, if
that were feasible.

It is ~lC!af me as a scientist that no harm is done to reefs or the environment by the harvest of
            to
live rock. It is also clear to me as a resident (and native) of the state of Florida that while the
facts about live rock are obvious, it Is politically expedient and just plain simpler to appease the
environmental lobby, and avoid the complex and expensive realm of enforcement that would be
(politically) necessary if the harvest of live rock were allowed to continue. I believe that justifying
the ban on live rock harvest by proclaiming the practice is destructive is a crime. Regulation of
the industry, while not easy, is a viable and fair option.

For the record, there exists an excellent photographic demonstration of the process (and rate) af
live rock formation on a Florida Keys coral reef. Photos taken by Eugene Shinn during a period
of 25 years at the same site show rapid growth of corals followed by senescence, death, and live
rock accumulation. This graphic on-site demonstration is clear proof of the fact that live rocks
form on a biological, not geological time scale. The photos can be seen in the foflowlng
publicatlon.

Shinn, E.A, 1989. What is reaily killing the corals? Sea Frontiers (Merch-
Apr11):72-81.

Shinn has also published these photos in other reports. He can be reached st 813-893:3684,-0i
at FAX # 813-893-3333.


Sincerely,
JRN 15 ' 9 4 13:43      SROD




                             EMERALD COAST

 Jan. 15, 1993
                         SCHOOL
                     SCUBA
 G l of Mexico Fishery Management Council
  uf
 Lincoln Center, Suite 331
 540 1 West Kennedy Boulevard
 Tampa, Florida 33609-2468
 8 13-228-28 15
 Fax 8 13-225-7015


 Dear Council Members.

 The issue of Live Rock Harvesting as been a very sensitive one for me for several years.
 And with the recent excelleration of this harvest occumng in the waters off of Destin, I feel
 adamant about expressing my concerns. I recently attended your hearing in Pensacola and
 was first at the podium to express my concerns. I logged over 300 dives in Destin < -1993
                                                                                     n
 and saw the harvesting effects first hand.

 According to FMFC stats there are approximately 35 individuals reporting landings. What
 this statistic doesn't represent are the 'teams of divers' these individuals take out harvesting
 with them. This practice if commonplace in our area with these 'team divers' being paid on
 average $100.00 per day. With a team, instead of an individual, collecting you can see h o w
 rampant destruction can and does occur. 2 of the 3 local liver rock permit holders have been
 charged by the Florida Marine Patrol for violations. One was fined and the other is awaiting
 judicial proceedings in Walton County.

 The State of Florida had the foresight to ban the harvest of live rock in 1989. If the
 continued harvest is harmful up to 9.0 nautical miles, it's equally damaging at 9.01 nautical
 miles.

 I am unyielding in my support for the total prohibition of live rock harvesting. Ih a
 community as small as Destin is, and with so many individuals involved in this practice, 1 can
 foresee nothing but the eradication of our natural resource for the economic profit of a few
 who care nothing for a fishing cominunity that has made its living in this manner for
 generations.

 Please adopt the SAFMCs position on the ban of wild rock harvesting.

 Thank you, T L .
 T L Disler
                       &&
 PAD1 Master Insuuctor - M53744
 Owner - Emerald Coast Scuba School
02?'20/"90 OE: 52




                     SHORES SHOPPING CENTER                       -   825 HIGHWAY 98 C            DESTZN, FLORIDA 32541


   To thr         members of the gulf fisheriss miasgement cqunci3,
            I would like to address    ? ; concerns and b e l i e f s concerning
                                        n.
   LLIL   u p u ~ a b a i . & r
                              ~   lArirAurr   -4.   L l r r   laour;   eE    l i r o   roolr   hrrvrob   &I. &ha
   R F ! ~n f +he 1 1 - S - A - 1 represent Myself and c r e w a.4 1 ive rock
   nervesters            aperating gut of U e u t i i i r ' l . I elso represent myself
   and my Family as operators of s marine Aquarium store also in
   destin Fl. I would also like to put in a word far the O t h e r
   s t u r e s upt3~aLizsy iu C ~ X CU . 3 .                  L l r a C h a r ~ d l tour liuoatack thicr
   owners and Employees. Last but r w t least I waul2 like to put ir.                                                  t
   ward for t h e hundreds of thousands of squariest throughout this
   couxatry.         i   appeal Ca your 9606 m e n t s e a t o .-1lnw +.ha continuation
   of the harvest of Live rock for a ressonbble W u n t of time
   u n t i l l t a viable a l t e r n a t i v e can be reachadas the possibility of
   aquaculture as a qood means t h a t car, be achieved as long as the
   ha,rvesters arn't cut short of being a b l e to meet these g a h l s if
   t . h i er I ivings art jerked fronr under t h a n .
        1 wae dietreseed at the meeting i n pensacole, Mere the
   lraruesters w e r - e outriun~thrcdby individuals t h a t would have you
   believe that w e were samehow remving entire reefs and thier
   verticle structure with crowbars and hammers. This simply is not
   true. Qnlp small portions of reef rubble is selected by hand acd
   from areas these p e o p l e never frequent. The reefs i n the EEC are
   appx ill'to 120' t h e y are rmt as sparse as they would lead yau t o
   belie=-   I a n y s e l f have over 1000 readings - There is w e rubble
   on them than I could possibly collect in a l i f e t i m e . If these
   people were so concerned at savinq thier reefs why don't they
   think at t h e damage caused by thier anchors as they lead
   thousands of students down each year? I have seen these anchors
   rip up huge sections of reef as I was cremd on the very first
   Dive boat in the area 2 0 y r s aqo.                               f ishlny v c ~ o c and
                                                                                         l ~          thier
   bottam 16 oz.leads? up to 100 at a tine houricing up and down on
   the rock and coral? These people are h i p x r i t e s playing on the
   fears and mindom o f people who know rrcthuinq                                        of    h c w liue r o c k is
   harvested and hew mch thier really is.
                                           l m it will have dewstating
            If t h i s imIust.ry is shut. ca
   =ZItcts        un ttruuauras w f =anall L u s u i r r ~ a i r c a a;rrrd                L h c p u p l c r h o work
   them and t h i e r f milye. f once auain a ~ ~ e a l vour cpad senses,
                                                       to
   t h a t you see through the hype and f a l l o u the plan to allaw t h e
   continuation of the harvest 3 yrs arzd a phase out shuould give u s
   harvesters the time we need to get Aquscclture going provided
   restrictions are lifted and we have a mean9 to support Our
   Indervors financially hy continutng the harwest. give us the t i r r t e
   and support w e need. This will Senifit all as the aquarium trade
   may be the salvation of the reefs a f t e r a l l and reef rock p l a y s
   such an iarpczrtant r o l e . .                  .....Thank         You



                                        TELEPHONE & FAX (904) 654-3333
                                           11950   N, Bayshore Drive, 9A
                                                         Miami, FL 33181
                                                       January 13, 1994

Georgia Cranmore
Southeast Regional Off i c e
National Marlne F i s h e ~ f e eService
9 4 5 0 Koger Boulevard
St. Petersburg, FL 33702
Dear Ms. Cranmore:
This latter pertains to proposed a c t i o n to be taken
regarding the harvest of liverock as presented in Amendment
2 to the Fishery Management Plan f o r Coral and Coral Reefs
of the Gulf of Mexico and South Atlantic.
I, personally, em a resident.pf Miami and consider myself to
be an environmentally aware person, particularly in - regard
to corals end coral reefs, since 1 am a marine sguarist and,
specifically, a . reef,-keeper. I am also President of t h e
Marine Aquarium 'Sacietiee of Noxth America (MASNA) which
represents hundreds. 'of marine. aqtlariets ranging from Puerto
Rico, throughout the'.:    United States and Canada, The most
recent poll of our membership (spring of '93) indicated t h a t
"reef keepers'' (only ) c o n s . t i t , g ? p 38% of our membership; fish
(only) 13%; and B O t # - - 4 . 9 % : W do not believe t h a t the
                                             e
responsible collectfon of, l i v e organisms for t h e aquarium
trade is, in i t s e l f , injurious. W ere a l s o not aware of
                                                  e
any hard data to shop t h a t the harvest of l i v e rock from
rubble zones is, in 'fact, det.rirnenta1 t o coral r e e f s .
The purpose of our hobby is't.0preserve l i f e , not destroy
i t . There is no mors~effsctiveor more educational tool in
raising awarenese end.conscidusnese regarding corals and
coral reefs than ,a mazine agyariuar, and in particular a reef
aquarium. It is d i f . f i c u l t to,'arouse concern for something
if it has never b'sen.seen.
The marine aquarium hobby has contributed a great deal of
information regarding the keeping of corals and t h e i r
environmental requirements,           We   organize a yearly
conference, t h e Matine Aqliarium Conference of North America
(MACNA), a t which ekperts from the academic c o r n u n i t y and
Europe are invited t o lecture i n their area of expertise on
the care and pr0p.a' ation of marine organisms.                 The
contributions we havg eon able to make and the advances in
keeping and propagating corals in reef tanks have been, in
large p a r t , due to the availability of livs rock. In f a c t ,
t h e current trend in "reef keepingN i s t o use only l i v e rock
end a protein skimmer. No other filtration is necessary,
other than occasional use of carbon.
There is no question that the protection of Florida's reef
systems (indeed ALL reef systems) comes before any other
consideration, Hawever, wo do not believe t h a t rohibiting
t h e harvest o f live rock is necessary. A prohibftion would
cause great economic harm not only to Flor~da's collectors,
but to t h e entire aquarium industiy, as well as s e t t i n g back
the ttScience and t.hs A t t 1 I (if I may borrow from s g o t t e ) of
marine aquarium keeping to the dark ages. W therefore urge
                                                   e
that more moderate proposals be adopted, such as making live
rock part of a regulated fishery With limited entry. W              s
also very much favor aquaculture of l i v e rock, but would
like to see a viable system of leasing/petnittina put in
place in tandem with any planned phase out of wlld harvest.
Last but not least, it was di8turbing to see Mark Derr's
article, ''Raider'e o f the Reef" listed as a reference in
your bibliography. Mr, Derr su pressed information supplied
                                    R
him which was favorable to the obby in his article. He is
opposed t o any form ,ox!the n~arineaquarium hobby (he is also
opposed to zoos), 'add..$hat b i a s was very evident in the
information he chose . t .publish. Thank you for your
                          ~
attention.
Sincerely,


Beth Hayden, President
MASNA
                                                             TAB 'E;                       NO.^
                    SUMMARY OF ACTIONS
         GULF OF MEXICO FISHERY MANAGEMENT COUNCIL
                    CORAL ADVISORY PANEL
                       TAMPA, FLORIDA
                      JANUARY 5, 1994


Six members of the panel attended.

The following comments were made by the panel:

1.     There was concern that harvest of live rock in the Gulf, west of Apalachicola
       where it occurs only in small patches, could be detrimental to reef fish habitat.

2.     Though it would be useful for enforcement to be able to identify cultch material
       from material live rock, marking is impractical at this point. Some discussion
       concerned the use of cement or similar porous material that might be used.
       This substance could be molded into identifiable shapes or configurations.
                                                                                           .   -
3.     There was general agreement that a phase out period of three years for taking
       live rock should be allowed which could allow ample time for establishment of
       aquaculture tracking.

4.     In the redefinition of octocorals, a 3-inch portion of rock beyond the holdfast
       should be allowed in order t o provide a base for presentation in aquaria.

5.     Access to harvesting live rock should be limited to current participants by
       permit.

6.     Trip limits should be provided in the interim. 500 to 1,000 pound limits were
       discussed (less west of Apalachicola).

7.     A phase out should be tied to aquaculture.

8.     Permits for aquaculture should allow possession of attached prohibited corals.

9.     A consensus recommendation for the South Atlantic Florida reef tract is for a
       two-year phase out of wild harvest with access limited to current participants,
       and a 500 pound trip limit. Aquaculture permitting should be expedited and
       encouraged.
    J A N - 1 4 - 9 4   F R I    1 6 : 0 2    S O U T H   A T L A N T I C    C O U N C I L       P - 1
                                                                                                   - - -9
                                                                                                        -
        RIEFING BOO ADDITION
    #
                                                                                                        -
                                    CORAL ADVISORY PANEL                     .



          Jennifer Wheaton, Chairman                         Dr. Jim Kundeil
          Florida Marlne Research Institute                  Vinson Institute of Government
          100 Eighth Ave., S.E.                              Unfvershy of Georgia
          St. Petersburg, FL 33701                           Athens, GA 30602
          813/896-8626 (eXt. 383)                            706/542-2736
          (Research)                                         (Rec. Diver)
          8/93                                               8/93
                                                             Michael McMaster

1         Dr. Walter M. Goldberg, Vice-Chairman
          9701 SW 62 COU*
          Miami, FL 33156
                                                              ..
                                                             P O Box 1168
                                                             Tavemier, FL 33070
                                                             305/852-0034
          305/348-2201                                       (Comm.)
          (Env.)                                             8/93
          1/86,2/86; 9/86;8/93
                                                             Ken Nedimyer
          Captain Ed Davldson                                P.O. Box 712
                            -
          Hurricane Aqua Center, inc.
          10,800 Overseas Highway
                                                             (212 Silver Palm Ave.)
                                                             Tavernier, FL 33070
          Marathon, FL 33050                                 305/852-4955
          305/247-2400                                       (Comm.)
                        -
          (Env. & Rec. Scuba Diving)                         8/93
          8/83,2/85,9/86,8/93
                                                             Alexander Stone
          Dr. Richard E. Dodge, Assoc. Professor             Project ReefKeeper
          Nova University                                    1800 S.W. First St., Sulte 306
          Oceanographic Center                               Miami, FL 33135
          8000 North Ocean Drive                             305/642-9443, FAX: 642-4996
          Danla, FL 33004                                    (Cons.)
          305/920- 1909                                      8/93
                  -
          (Env, Scuba)
          9/83,2/85, 9/86, 8/93                              Robert Van Doiah
                                                             S.C. Wildlife and Marine Resources Dept.
           Lisa Furstenwerth                                  Marine Resources Division
           P.O. Box 302                                      P.O. Box 12559
           Summerland Key, FL 33042                          Charleston, SC 29412
           305/745-3686                                      803/762-5048
           (Cornm.)                                          (Research)
3          8/93                                              8/93
J A N - - 1 4 - 9 4   F R I      1 6 : 0 3    S O U T H     A T L A N T I C      C O U N C I L
                                                                                                           p .   2 0
                                                                                                             -




            SAFMC Coral Advisory Panel Meeting
            January 6,1994
            Duck Key,Florida 1:40PM-     6:OOPM
            (Summary NOtes of Individual Comments)
            Ken Nedimyer-
               Drop- "non-encrusting species of the subclass Octocorallia" in redefinition of
               octocorals.
               Florida Marine Life Association supports limited access and Iimited effort.
               Daily trip limits 500 pounds phase to 200 pounds.
               Limit harvest and ta er down to small harvest with availability of aquaculture.
                                    R
               Will not be able to c ange limestone into base rock.
               Difference in rubble rock and hard bottom.
               Cannot place rock in sand for aquaculture.
            Lisa Furstenworth-
                1992 Ex vessel value- 1.74 million dollars.
                Collection occurring has been occumng in the same area for six years.
                1500 pound daily mp limit.
                Define amount of substrate that can be taken with octocords.
                Collectors agree not to chip rock.
                Manage rubble rock cut out other rock landings.                                    -   -
                Does not support quotas,
            Captain Ed Davidson-
               Live rock is pan of a dynamic system which supports the rest of the fisheries and it
               should nmam where it is.
               Is a shon term fishery on habitat
               Harvest of public resources is a privilege.
               Ultimately prohibit h m e s t at most phase out
               Unlimited harvest would allow expansion and stock piling in unregulated areas.
               Leave aquaculture to state waters
            Mike McMaster-
               Need to differentiate hard bottom from rubble.
               Problem with limiting harvest
               No daily trip limits.
               Limited access without effort limitation
               License divers.
               Do not suppm prohibition.
               Continue rubble collection stop chip ing of rock.
                                                    i
               Increase opportunities forfederal an state waters (different forms in state and federal
               waters).
               Aquaculture developing specialty rock
            Alexander Stone-
               Live rock is not a renewable resource in biological time unlike soft coraIs (renewable
               in geologic time)
               Net accretion in South Atlantic is negative loosing rcef bottom
               OY should be zero
               Support aquaculture if viable
               If bare rock under the sand can be used for aquaculture then it can be used.
               Support prohibition upon implementation( no incentive to find alternatives
               If a phase out m s occur then it must be fixed
                               ut
J A N - 1 4 - 9 4       F R I   1 6 ' 0 4     S O U T H     A T L A N T I C       C O U N C I L                      P . 2 1




           SAFMC Coral Advisory Panel Meeting
           January 6,1994
           (SummaryNotes of Individual Comments)- Continued

           Richard Dodge-                                                ,
                                                                     ...,. . .... .
                                                                            ,
                                                                            .
              E n on the side of conscrvarion when additiona1information is a+d;b'~e limit h m s t
              No harvest/ non renewable in the short term
              No biological reason to establish a quota
              No biological reason to phase out.
           Jennifer Wheaton-
              Propose a new defmition for live rock.
              Reef track in Florida is not accreting
              Support prohibition immediately
              Limited effort like a quota will not be enforceable.
              Research in Dry Totugas shows if subsaate is right thcn growth occurs
              Creative concrete in Adanta Georgia can make any type of substrate needed.
              The state is not limiting live rock aquaculture leases to sand areas.
           Dr. Walter Goldberg-
               Preference to favor limited harvest if enforceable.                                           -   -

               Limit amount, time and access.
               Rubble rock is being treated same as reef do not feel it is the same.
               lmponancc of rubble rock is &pendent on particular habitat.
               Not convinced an immediate prohibition is necessary.
               Unlimited harvest is biggest problem.
               No harvest of any encrusting octocorals.
               Did not consider algae which is important to the s s e .
                                                                   tm
                                                                 i
               New &finition of live rock: "Biogenicrcsk attac ed to or in close association with
               hard bottom communities on which live coral is growing
           Dr. Robert Van Dolah-
               Against collection of live rock which is not renewable.
               Data gap needs to be resolved (is then a net gain or loss of rubble).
               Support promotion of aquaculture.
               Taking a long to colonize is an argument against
               No wa to monitor or contzol hwest.
                        i'                            iea
               Possib s illegal activity/ may need a M n r l Manngcmcnt Semice lease.
               H r bottom is rimarily octocoral sponge associations and is the oniy habitat
                ad
               corn lexity in Ckolinss and docs not upp port any harvest of ostocorals because it
                    P
               wou d have a significant impact on hard bottom habitat ,                  - . --
           Dr. Jim Kundell-
               State is in favor of the South Adantic position.
               May possibly limit harvest and move toward aquaculture.
               k d rock will not be acceptable for aquaculture.

           SAFMC Coral AP h p o s e d a ndefmition of Live Rock- , .;:.,,.,..-:,ii:. +..,. ;.,..              .. - I.'. . *
             New definition of live rock; "Biogenic r- attached io,'@i c l o s ~ e - ; a ~ ~ l a ~ ~ ~ ~ , ~ .~ : .n, .*--
                                                                                      ,:A,   .,,,<,.   .,,                             '   i

                                                                           in                            -:        5; : i ;
                                                                                                                    .:
                                                                                                                         . .
                                                                                                                         : " : %   .       ,



             with hard bottom communities on which marine org'aiil%sor & akembhge are
             thereof are growing."
                  p    *'
                       .
                       a
                        *      g
                               '
                               l          "5   '
                                                   UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

                        "o ' &
                           - '
                                           j
                                           '   1   National Oceanic and Atmospheric Adminiatration
                            *?.rr,   0'   P
                                               1   IUATIONAL MARINE FISHERIES SERVICE
                                                   southeast Regional Off ice
                                                   9450 Koger Boulevard
              -v-'[jve                             St. Petersburg, FL 33702

                                     ,w

Mr. Wayne Swingle, Executive Director                            u
Gulf of Mexico Fishery Man.agement Council
Lincoln Center, STE 331
5401 Kennedy Boulevard
Tampa, Florida 33609-2468
Dear Wayne:
     These are our informal comments on the public hearing draft
(dated November 1993) of Amendment 2 to the Fishery Management
Plan for Coral and Coral Reefs of the Gulf of Mexico and
South Atlantic (FMP), including a draft Supplemental
Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS), a Regulatory Impact
Review, and an Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analysis. N O A A 1 s
Office of Ecology informs us that the document is in the proper
format and may be filed as a draft SEIS. The Southeast ~isheries
Science Center determined that Amendment 2 is based on the best
available scientific information.
     Timing of the Amendment/SEIS
     It is our understanding that Amendment 2 will be submitted
for filing as a draft SEIS in February or March, following the
South Atlantic Council's final action on the draft amendment.
Please be advised that an additional 45-day public comment period
will be required, and a response prepared to all written
comments, before the amendment and a final SEIS can be submitted
for Secretarial review.
    Harvest Restrictions
     We disagree with the Gulf Council's preferred option to
merely delay, for thkee years, implementation of a live rock
harvest prohibition. Instead, we recommend a phased reduction in
harvest levels over the three-year period.
     Specifically, we recommend a phase out of the harvest of
live rock in the EEZ beginning with a 25% reduction in year 1, a
50% reduction in year 2, and a 75% reduction in year 3. At the
end of the three-year period, no harvest of "wildn live rock
would be allowed in the EEZ. This schedule will allow the
industry to pursue aquaculture options, and provide the incentive
to do so, while mitigating, to the extent possible, the adverse
impacts of the harvest on this nonrenewable resource.
      ~eography-basedManagement Measures
     ~rnendment2 contains an option to manage live rock
differently in the Gulf than in the South Atlantic. However,
very little justification is provided for this option. We
recommend that the same management regime be applied to all areas
of the Councils' jurisdictions, absent strong evidence to do
otherwise. Different management measures can cause confusion,
complicate enforcement, and result in a shifting of effort that
could further damage the resource.
      Aquaculture Permits
     It is not clear to us who will issue aquaculture permits,
what the criteria for issuance will be, and how an exception can
be made for harvest of hard corals and other prohibited species
on cultured rock. Additionally, it is essential to provide a
system for marking of cultured live rock. Otherwise, we will not
be able to enforce a prohibition on harvest of wild live rock.
      Legal Review                                         -   -

     In addition to the above concerns, our General Counsel
advises that Amendment 2 needs a discrete problem statement and
the problems need to be related to the FMP objectives. Also, the
discussions of the quota options need to contain the scientific
basis for setting a quota, i.e., what would determine the quota.
   option needs to be added setting forth the OY, if management
by quota is chosen. The only OYs listed are for the scientific,
educational, restoration, aquaculture, or phase out situations.
     We also have a .number of minor issues and editorial
comments. I suggest that our staffs work out these matters to
our mutual satisfaction before the Council submits the amendment
as a draft SEIS.




                                       .
                                 ?.lhbLd Kemmerer

cc:   F/CM - Schaefer
      SAFMC - Mahood
                                 Regiona
                                           3
                                           Director


      F/SEC - Brown
      GCSE - Pedrick
       *
       .
           ' I B .W 6X-   P



                    %f-./Pk
                           A



                               R
                                   .
                                   -
                                    ,

                                   't
                                   -r
                                    4,   Of
                                              , c.
                                                ,.
                                                     I

                                                     I UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE
                                                     ,
                                                     i
                                                     /
                                                     1
                                                         National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
                                                         NATIONAL MARINE FISHERIES SERVICE
                                                                                --



                                                         southeast Regional Off ice
                                                         Q A F n V n m n ~ .
                                                                            noulevard
                                                         St. Petersburg, FL 33702
                                                                                     -




Mr. Wayne Swingle, Executive ~irecto;
Gul f of Mexico Fishery Management Counci
                                                                '
Lin.coln Center, STE 331
5401 Kennedy Boulevard
Tampa, Florida 33609-2468
Dear Wayne:
     These are our informal comments on the public hearing draft
(dated November 1993) of Amendment 2 to the Fishery Management
Plan for Coral and Coral Reefs of the Gulf of Mexico and
                    ,
South Atlantic (FMP) including a draft Supplemental
Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS), a Regulatory Impact
Review, and an Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analysis. NOAAts
Office of Ecology informs us that the document is in the proper
format and may be filed as a draft SEIS. The Southeast -Fisheries
Science Center determined that Amendment 2 is based on the best
available scientific information.
     Timing of the Amendment/SEIS
     It is our understanding that Amendment 2 will be submitted
for filing as a draft SEIS in February or March, following the
South Atlantic Council's final action on the draft amendment.
Please be advised that an additional 45-day public comment period
will be required, and a response prepared to all written
comments, before the amendment and a final SEIS can be submitted
for Secretarial review.
    Harvest Restrictions
     We disagree with the Gulf Council's preferred option to
merely delay, for thkee years, implementation of a live rock
harvest prohibition. Instead, we recommend a phased reduction. in
harvest levels over the three-year period.
     Specifically, we recommend a phase out of the harvest of
live rock in the EEZ beginning with a 25% reduction in year 1, a
50% reduction in year 2, and a 75% reduction in year 3. At the
end of the three-year period, no harvest of nwildM-live rock
would be allowed in the EEZ. This schedule will allow the
industry to pursue aquaculture options, and provide the incentive
to do so, while mitigating, to the extent possible, the adverse
impacts of the harvest on this nonrenewable resource.
      Geography-based Management Measures

     ~mendment 2 contains an option to manage live rock
differently in the Gulf than in the South Atlantic. However,
very little justification is provided for this option. We
recommend that the same management regime be applied to all areas
of the Councils' jurisdictions, absent strong evidence to do
otherwise.' Different management measures can cause confusion,
complicate enforcement, and result in a shifting of effort that
could further damage the resource.
      Aquaculture Permits
     It is not clear to us who will issue aquaculture permits,
what the criteria for issuance will be, and how an exception can
be made for harvest of hard corals and other prohibited species
on cultured rock. Additionally, it is essential to provide a
system for marking of cultured live rock. Otherwise, we will not
be able to enforce a prohibition on harvest of wild live rock.
      Legal Review                                         -   -

     In addition to the above concerns, our General Counsel
advises that Amendment 2 needs a discrete problem statement and
the problems need to be related to the FMP objectives. Also, the
discussions of the quota options need to contain the scientific
basis for setting a quota, i.e., what would determine the quota.
An option needs to be added setting forth the OY, if management
by quota is chosen. The only OYs listed are for the scientific,
educational, restoration, aquaculture, or phase out situations.
     We also have a number of minor issues and editorial
comments. I suggest that our staffs work out these matters to
our mutual satisfaction before the Council submits the amendment
as a draft SEIS.




cc:   F/CM - Schaefer
      SAFMC - Mahood
      F/SEC - Brown
      GCSE - Pedrick

				
DOCUMENT INFO
Shared By:
Categories:
Tags:
Stats:
views:3
posted:10/16/2012
language:Unknown
pages:278