North Carolina Wildlife Federation launches fishing line recycling program

Today's fishing line is designed for strength and durability under heavy strain and in any weather conditions, so when it ends up in the ecosystem where a fisherman is practicing his hobby, it can lead to untold problems for the area's wildlife. These single-strand flexible plastic products can last for hundreds of years without breaking down, and sea turtles, seabirds and dolphins can become tangled quite easily. According to, the North Carolina Wildlife Federation is stepping in to control this problem by launching its Fishing Line Recovery and Recycling Project to educate the public about the potential risks and to provide on-shore receptacles to recycle these products.

"Fishermen need something strong and long lasting with a little stretch; that's the definition of fishing line," Randy Gregory of the North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries, told the news source. "But when that line is not disposed of properly, it can create a lot of hazards for fish and wildlife using the resource."

The Federation has installed a series of recycling bins at public fishing and boating areas so that used fishing line could be easily collected and discarded without harming the local ecosystem. While the program has yet to go state-wide, it is off to a wonderful start with 60 recycling locations located in Carteret, Onslow and Brunswick counties.

The program is an extension of a project conducted by the Cape Lookout Studies Program which began in 2006. Since then, the program has collected 500 miles of fishing line that has made the state's lakes and rivers a greener place for the wildlife and the individuals that enjoy the area. This kind of progressive program will hopefully spread to other states to reduce the environmental impact of fishing.