The influence of "Leave No Trace" ordinances on coastal species management

Published on by Matthew Ware
Coastal environments are critical habitat spaces for threatened species and provide key economic and recreation opportunities for human development. These ecosystem services are increasingly under a range of threats, including the accumulation of marine debris and abandoned beach equipment. Municipalities are turning to legislative actions such as "Leave No Trace" ordinances in an effort to combat marine debris production and deposition. Though "Leave No Trace" has been around for decades with respect to inland ecosystem management, it is a novel application in the coastal environment and, as such, its consequences for coastal species management require investigation. This project initially investigated the impacts of a "Leave No Trace" ordinance on sea turtle nesting success and the frequency of obstructed crawls in Baldwin County, Alabama, USA, and will expand in the future to other locations and species, as available.

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Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Section 6 grant F15AC01221

Florida State University Department of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences Winchester Scholarship