Still Serving

Photo Credit: US Coast Guard

The department of Environmental Protection’s artificial reef program is back after a hiatus of nearly five years due to lack of federal funding. About 10 old vessels are slotted to be deployed by the end of fall 2017, to provide artificial reefs for organisms such as algae, barnacles, mussels, sea stars and sea fans to grow on. Colonization occurs in as little as two weeks, and the early organisms will attract smaller fish, which in turn will attract larger fish such as black sea bass, tautog, summer flounder, lobsters and other sought-after species. One of the boats in the queue is none other than the former U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Tamaroa, which was immortalized in the book “The Perfect Storm” and the movie of the same name. Originally a U.S. Navy fleet tug, Tamaroa is the last surviving vessel from the Battle of Iwo Jima.

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