Garbage buckets for your beach walks arrive at Dauphin Island
DAUPHIN ISLAND, Ala. (WKRG) – Intern Erin Casellas at Dauphin Island Sea Lab is dedicated to leaving the famous seaside town a little cleaner than she found it, by introducing the Fill-A-Bag waste program.
“I think there is unfortunately a lot of garbage that ends up mostly on barrier islands like Dauphin Island. It’s really sad to see, I have personally seen fishing lines tangled in sharks and evidence of entanglement of fishing gear on dolphins, and the Alabama Marine Mammal Stranding Network has found plastic in them. stomachs of stranded marine mammals.
Erin Casellas, Alabama Marine Mammal Stranding Network
Microplastics have also been found in the stomachs of marine mammals in different places, not just on the Gulf Coast.
Erin told WKRG News 5 while participating in a virtual beach cleanup with the University of Miami, that she was in contact with the founder of the program. Fill-A-Bag places upright poles with hanging buckets on public beaches.
Aware of the local problem of litter on the beaches, she brought the possible solution to the town of Dauphin Island.
“It makes me so happy that this is taking hold. I was hoping that would be the case, but I was able to speak directly to the mayor and he was all about the idea. So I’m happy that the community here seems to embrace the idea so far and hope it can make a difference.
Funding for this project is already secured, Erin says the Fill-a-bag program has an account to help other areas get started. The program is underway in 25 cities in Florida, Massachusetts and Australia.
“One way I think everyone can help is by picking up litter along the beach and removing it straight from the source, hopefully before the tide can come up and bring it back into the water,” Erin said.
The positions will be in place from early to mid-June. Erin works with the city to find the best locations on the island. If you want to help Erin with this project, she says more buckets will be needed.
Would love any donation of buckets from local people or businesses, we will need at least 8 buckets of any size from 1 to 5 gallons. And even if people don’t visit a beach with a Fill-A-Bag station, bringing their own buckets or plastic bags to pick up litter is super easy and a great way to protect marine life and keep beaches beautiful.
The Alabama Marine Mammal Stranding Network hotline is 1-877-942-5343 in case you find a sick, entangled, or dead marine mammal in the water or on land. There is also a helpline number for the Sea Turtle Stranding Network, 1-866-732-8878, if you find a dead or live sea turtle on land.