FWC Law Enforcement Collier County
Investigator White and Lieutenant Mahoney conducted plain-clothes foot patrol within the Big Cypress WMA with a primary focus on the feeding of alligators. Upon arrival, three subjects were fishing from a bridge which is posted as “No Fishing from Bridge.” They saw a juvenile catch a fish and dangle it over the water to entice the alligators located near the bridge. The juvenile teased the alligators for a while before feeding them the fish attached to the end of his fishing line. The juvenile was educated and warned about the dangers of feeding the alligators. Additionally, one of the adults was cited for not possessing a valid freshwater fishing license. Additional patrols were conducted along the Turner River. No feeding violations were seen and additional freshwater fishing license tickets were issued.
The crew of the Offshore Patrol Vessel CT Randall conducted turtle excluder device (TED) inspections on the shrimp boat fleet operating out of Fort Myers Beach over a three-day period. Lieutenant Shea, Officers Miller and Thurkettle inspected a total of 33 TEDs on 12 shrimping vessels. They found 14 TED violations, which were corrected dockside by the crews of the vessels. They also addressed a state violation involving the possession of Bahamian starfish, a prohibited species to possess, on board one of the shrimping vessels. The crews, captains and owners of the shrimping fleet vessels were all very appreciative of the dockside inspections to ensure that all their TEDs were in compliance.