March 6, 1997
For more information contact:
Bill Figley at 609-748-2020
In an effort to provide more structured habitat for marine life, the Department of Environmental Protection’s Division of Fish, Game and Wildlife is offering an “Adopt-A-Wreck” program to sponsor the sinking of ships, barges and army tanks off the New Jersey coast.
Who would want to adopt a shipwreck, one might ask? Well, despite its lack of appeal to many, anglers and divers know better. They understand the value of a shipwreck as marine fish and shellfish habitat and what they want is more wrecks along the New Jersey coast.
“Adopting a wreck is an excellent way to gain recognition among the anglers and divers who will use the site for the next 100 years,” said division Director Bob McDowell. “It can also provide a lasting memorial to anyone who has loved New Jersey’s marine environment, and most importantly, will provide much needed habitat for marine fish and shellfish on the sea floor.”
Individuals, fishing and diving clubs, tackle shops, and environmentally-concerned companies are all welcome to adopt a wreck. Adopters can dedicate and name their new reefs. Each name is permanent and will be noted in all division publications. In addition to naming the reef, adopters will receive a high quality, framed picture of their wreck and a brass dedication plaque.
Adopt-A-Wreck funds are used for the costly preparation of ships, barges and tanks for sinking on New Jersey’s reefs. Each structure must be cleaned of debris and oil, watertight bulkheads must be cut, and each vessel must be towed to an ocean reef site and sunk. All of these tasks are extremely expensive and the Adopt-A-Wreck donation only covers a portion of the costs.
If your club or business is interested in adopting a wreck, call or write for a list of available vessels and adoption details.
NJ Division Fish, Game and Wildlife
PO Box 418
Port Republic, NJ 08241
LIST OF 1996 ADOPTIONS:
“HANK A. DUKES”
A Sheridan tank sponsored by Duke’s Bayside Dock was sunk on the Barnegat Light Reef on September 5. “This wreck is dedicated to the memory of Floyd (Hank) A. Dukes, Jr. who left us on December 7, 1995. He was a dedicated father and friend with a love for the bay and ocean.”
“JOHN DOBILAS REEF”
A 165-foot former navy oil tanker renamed the “John Dobilas” and five armored personnel carriers (APCs) became the “John Dobilas Reef” on a portion of the Garden State North Reef. The tanker was sunk on August 20 and the APCs on September 5. The reef was constructed in memory of John Dobilas, whose passion was fishing Barnegat Bay and the ocean waters beyond Barnegat Inlet. The reef was sponsored by employees of McGraw-Hill Companies and the McGraw-Hill Foundation.
Three Sheridan tanks sponsored by the Ocean City Marlin and Tuna Club were sunk on the Great Egg Reef on September 9.
“OCEAN WRECK DIVERS II”
Five armored personnel carriers sponsored by the Ocean Wreck Divers Scuba Club were sunk on the Sea Girt Reef on August 16. The new reef was dedicated to promoting diving in New Jersey.
“ABSECON SALTWATER SPORTSMEN MEMORIAL WRECK”
A Sheridan tank sponsored by the Absecon Saltwater Sportsmen was sunk on the Little Egg Reef on September 5. This wreck is dedicated to all the deceased members of the Absecon Saltwater Sportsmen.
“MICHAEL DE PALMA II”
A 70-foot deck barge sponsored by the captains and friends of Michael DePalma was sunk on the Wildwood Reef on September 9.
“GPPCBA - BUDWEISER REEF”
The 92-foot tug “Colleen” and five armored personnel carriers were sunk to create the “GPPCBA - Budweiser Reef” on a portion of the Axel Carlson Reef. The “Colleen” was sunk on August 3 and the APCs on August 16. The reef was sponsored by the Greater Point Pleasant Charter Boat Association and Budweiser.
A 99-foot former navy tug renamed the “G.A. Venturo” and five armored personnel carriers were sunk to create the “FCO Reef” on a portion of the Sea Girt Reef. The tug was sunk on October 17 and the five APCs on August 16. The reef was sponsored by the Fisherman’s Conservation Organization. The tug was dedicated to the memory of Captain Greg Venturo, a founder of FCO, charter captain, outdoor writer, film maker and enthusiastic promoter of New Jersey’s saltwater sportfisheries.
A Sheridan tank sponsored by the Beach Haven Marlin and Tuna Club was sunk on the Little Egg Reef on September 5.
“1000 FATHOM REEF”
A Sheridan tank sponsored by the southern chapter of the 1000 Fathom Club was sunk on the Great Egg Reef on September 9.
A Sheridan tank sponsored by Village Harbour Fishing Club was sunk on the Little Egg Reef on September 5.
A Sheridan tank sponsored by Shelly Marin, a Division of Fish, Game and Wildlife marine biologist, was sunk on the Little Egg Reef on September 5. This reef is dedicated to the memory of her grandmother Carmen.
Pressure Seals, Inc. recently adopted a Sheridan tank that had been sunk on the Barnegat Light Reef on August 23, 1995.