WW2 LIberty ships became succesful artificial reefs

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WW2 LIberty ships became succesful artificial reefs

April 29, 2012 - 22:11
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Five Liberty ships, the workhorse of America’s World War II mecharnt fleet, sunk in the Mississippi Sound 40 years ago, have brought more sea life to this region studies show.

The reefs lure sea urchins and other small life, maybe even coral, and all that lures smaller fish, then bigger fish.

The first Liberty ship SS Patrick Henry shortly after its launch in September 1941.

During the war, more than 2,750 Liberty ships were built by the US to help crush the Japanese and German war machines by delivering cargo, troops and munitions.

In the mid-1970s some of the vessels were stripped and deliberately scuttled to create fishing reefs, and that initial success led to an inshore and offshore artificial reef program that continues today..

Libertyships in the National Defense Reserve Fleet were offered to coastal states as artificial reefs, and the Mississippi Gulf Fishing Banks Inc., stepped into action. With the help of state agencies, continuing today through the Department of Marine Resources, MGFB organizers and those who continue the reef efforts have since helped create hundreds of reefs near shore, in the Mississippi Sound and south of the barrier islands.

Studies show the artificial reefs, whether inshore or offshore, have brought more sea life to this region. The reefs lure sea urchins and other small life, maybe even coral, and all that lures smaller fish, then bigger fish.

When your sea bottoms are flat like ours, anything you put down helps because it attracts fish. We certainly learned that when the Liberty Ship Reefs were created

J.P. Trochesset, charter boat captain

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