Federal Court Stops Longline Fishing to Protect Turtles Off California Coast

A new court decision protects leatherback sea turtles by suspending longline fishing, which can entangle the animals.(Daniel Evans/Caribbean Conservation Corp. via the Los Angeles Times)

A new court decision protects leatherback sea turtles by suspending longline fishing, which can entangle the animals.(Daniel Evans/Caribbean Conservation Corp. via the Los Angeles Times)

Longline fishing won’t be allowed off the California coast after a federal district court suspended permits for the fishing method.

In December, the court struck down longline fishing permits that the National Marine Fisheries Service issued last spring, ruling that the service didn’t properly analyze threats to critically endangered leatherback sea turtles.

“The permits were vacated by the court, so the permits are no longer in effect,” said Catherine Kilduff, an attorney with the Center for Biological Diversity, which filed a lawsuit with Turtle Island Restoration Network to challenge the permits.

The National Marine Fisheries Service declined to comment on the case while it analyzes the decision, spokesman Jim Milbury said.

Read the full story on LATimes.com.

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