The report is about a preserve called "Tortugas Marine Reserve" which is part of the "Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary" and is located at the far end of the group of islands called the Florida Keys. This reserve was established in 2001 and now it has been evaluated and the report said it is a success for both commercially fishing as well as tourism industry and of course biodiversity. A summary of the report is available at the following link:
1. Overfished species such as black and red grouper, yellowtail and mutton snapper increased in presence, abundance and size inside the reserve and throughout the region
2. Annual gatherings of spawning mutton snapper, once thought to be wiped out from overfishing, began to reform inside the Reserve
3. Commercial catches of reef fish in the region increased, and continue to do so; and
4. No financial losses were experienced by regional commercial or recreational fishers
The name Tortugas comes from the Spanish word for turtles. Here there were plenty of turtles in the 1800s. They were also subjected to fishing and we hope that it will recover in the same way as the fishes though it takes longer time for this because turtles have a longer reproduktion time than fish. There are seven species of marine turtles. All seven species of marine turtles are either Listed as 'Threatened' or 'endangered' under the Endangered Species Act
Tortugas is situated where different sea currents meet, making the area a very rich marine area and as a result, there are over 400 species of reef fish, including all species of groupers. It is also an important spawning area for tuna. About 40 species of sharks are seen in the area, some of which are just passing.