Going Coastal on Monofilament

monofilament line recycle box

(Monofilament fishing line recycling collection box at Stella Maris Fishing Station; Photo by Ray Johnson)

The not-for-profit organization, Going Coastal, Inc., works to preserve urban waterfront resources by connecting people and their coastal waterways in sustainable ways.

One of the many means to the ends of “public enjoyment of coastal resources and responsible use of coastal resources” that the Going Coastal organization, in partnership with the Berkley Conservation Institute, uses is the collection and recycling of monofilament fishing line. Although, this fishing line is a necessity for making the big catch, it’s not necessary (or good) for it to be thrown into the water.

According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, monofilament — which lasts for up to 600 years — contributes to environmental pollution. Check this article about birds in Florida found strangled by this type of fishing line.

Monofilament line is doing damage to local wildlife in the Sheepshead Bay waters. Darren, at Bernie’s Bait and Tackle says, “I do a lot of diving and whenever I’m out in the water I see a lot of horseshoe crabs that get tied up in the fishing line and there is a lot of other marine wildlife that gets tangled. For example, there’s a type of bird that when it goes diving into the water for fish, it comes up with fishing line. But, I’ve also seen people go fishing and get caught up in it. He goes on to say that if “we could do something to help the environment, then that’s what we’ll do.”

monofilament line box top

To help reduce the damage to our natural environment, the organization has put out a call for volunteers to place and maintain collection bins where fishermen can place their used monofilament fishing lines. The collection bins are already in place at a few local fishing supply stores, a marina, and the NYC Parks Department pier station. With your help, they can be placed at every other spot where they are needed. Once or month or so, the boxes are visited by the volunteers and the fishing line is packaged and sent out for recycling in postage paid boxes.

You can spread the word about the importance of keeping this fishing line out of the waters by telling your friends to drop it off at the stations. If you or someone you know may be able to volunteer to help with this recycling effort, contact Going Coastal.

Contact information to volunteer:
Going Coastal, Inc.
Send e-mail

Stella Maris Fishing Station
Bait, Tackle & Ice
2702 Emmons Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11235
(718) 646-9754
Open Everyday
March 1 to September 30 from 5 a.m. to 8 p.m.
October to February – Call for hours
Located near the store entrance

Bernie’s Bait & Tackle
3035 Emmons Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11235
(718) 646-7600
Open Everyday from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Located behind the counter

Venice Marina
3939 Emmons Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11235
(718) 646-9283
(Ask the manager for the drop-off box)

NYC Parks Department Fishing Pier Station
Drop-off station located at the end of the dock
Parks Information 1-800-201-PARK