Over 500 shells, coral confiscated from cruise ship couple in New Orleans
NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - United States Customs Agents seized hundreds of various shells and coral from two cruise ship passengers in New Orleans.
Nine sea fans, 47 sea sponges, five Queen conch shells, three pieces of bone, 297 molluscs shells, 68 stony coral, 25 pieces of crabs, 30 sea urchins, 21 mussel shells, and four chiton were confiscated from a husband and wife, who admitted to collecting the items during the ports of call for use in art projects.
“While these aquatic items may look nice, the import/export of them needs to be regulated to protect these natural resources,” said Terri Edwards, New Orleans Area Port Director.
Officials say it is unlawful to import wildlife without a license.
“Removing these items from the wild has a negative impact on plant and wildlife habitats and affects opportunities for others to appreciate and enjoy these species. These types of activities go against the very conservation ethic at the heart of federal wildlife laws that serve the public interest,” said Special Agent in Charge Stephen Clark.
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