About Return ‘Em Right
Return ‘Em Right is an initiative that works directly with recreational anglers to reduce catch and release mortality from barotrauma in Gulf of Mexico reef fisheries. The program will increase reef fish survival by encouraging anglers to adopt best release practices, including the use of descending devices, when targeting reef fish. The goals of Return ‘Em Right are to reduce catch and release mortality, improve anglers’ experiences with release gear, and improve the overall health of reef fisheries and the Gulf of Mexico.
Background and Funding
Return ‘Em Right includes educational programming, outreach with the angling community, and scientific studies to inform best practices and evaluate project success. It was selected as a restoration project by the Deepwater Horizon Open Ocean Trustee Implementation Group as part of the 2019 Open Ocean Restoration Plan. About $30 million from the Deepwater Horizon settlement is dedicated to the Return ‘Em Right initiative to restore Gulf of Mexico reef fish, which is anticipated to span from 2020-2027.