‘Desperate people’ poach starfish, mussels from California tide pools, officials say

Fort Worth Star-Telegram

Hordes of people are descending on fragile Los Angeles-area tide pools to scrape starfish, mussels and other sea life from the rocks, city officials say.

The Los Angeles city attorney’s office announced charges Thursday against 45 people accused of overfishing, fishing without licenses and taking restricted species at White Point Beach in San Pedro.

“I understand how desperate people are in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic — I get it,” said City Attorney Mike Feuer, reported the Los Angeles Times. “People have lost their jobs. Peoples’ rent is at stake.”

But Feuer said the overfishing threatens the future of the tide pools, according to the publication.

“This can’t continue,” Feuer said, KNBC reported. “This is not a way to feed your family or to sell a small quantity of sea creatures to make ends meet.”

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