Norwalk, CT - The Maritime Aquarium President and CEO Jason Patlis applauded legislation to protect horseshoe crabs on World Oceans Day. Patlis said, "For approximately 450 million years, long before the age of dinosaurs, horseshoe crabs have been in existence on this planet. Today, they play a critical role in the ecosystems of Long Island Sound and the mid-Atlantic. In particular, during the mating season in the spring, millions of horseshoe crab eggs serve as a food source for many species of migratory birds, including the threatened red knot, migrating along the Atlantic Flyway.
At the same time, populations of horseshoe crabs have been plummeting throughout their range, in large part due to many human activities, including harvest for fertilizer, bait, and biomedical applications, as well as loss of nesting and feeding habitats due to coastal development.
Public Act No. 23-6 prohibits certain harvest of horseshoe crabs and thereby relieves some of the pressure facing the species in the waters of Long Island Sound. The signing of Public Act No. 23-6 is an important measure that will further our conservation efforts here in Connecticut. This news is especially exciting as we celebrate World Ocean Day and reaffirm our commitment to take actions that positively impact the ocean. Thank you to Representative Gresko for his leadership on this initiative, as well as the Connecticut General Assembly for passing this legislation, and Governor Lamont for signing it into law."
THE MARITIME AQUARIUM AT NORWALK inspires people of all ages to appreciate and protect the Long Island Sound ecosystem and the global environment through living exhibits, marine science and environmental education. The aquarium is home to over 7,000 animals of hundreds of species including seals, sharks, rays, jellies, turtles and meerkats. Additionally, it offers sensory-enhanced 4D movies, in-person and virtual education programs for schools and families, and public cruises aboard its hybrid-electric research vessel. The Maritime Aquarium is an accredited member of the Association of Zoos & Aquariums, and receives support from the State of Connecticut DECD’s Offices of Culture and Tourism. For more information, visit www.maritimeaquarium.org.