Group picture of participants from the Deerfield Beach Annual Pier Clean-up 2022

First of all, thank you to everyone that participated in this year’s Annual Pier Clean-up!

We would like to thank the following organizations for their donations, time, support:

  • Women’s Club of Deerfield Beach
  • ZooKeeper
  • Loggerhead Marinelife Center
  • Coral Reef Alliance
  • Broward County Sea Turtle Conservation Program
  • Inwater Research Group
  • Gumbo limbo Coastal Stewards
  • Stoked on Salt
  • Friends of Our Florida Reefs
  • NSU Academic Diving Program
  • Coral Reef Foundation
  • FFWC Marine Fisheries Management
  • Ocean Conservancy
  • Scubapro
  • Aqualung
  • Project AWARE
  • International Game Fish Association
  • Costa
  • 4Ocean
  • DRYFOB
  • XS SCUBA
  • Including divers, freedivers, snorkelers, and topside support, 451 people participated in this year’s Annual Pier Clean-up!

    Continue reading for a recap of the day’s highlights.

    Day of the Event

    Divers getting into the ocean for the Pier Clean-up 2022

    On June 18, 2022, the event that had been postponed for two years finally made its returning debut.

    The day started with pure excitement.

    Volunteers, divers, and booths were setting up and taking their positions for the day.

    As the sun peeked over the horizon, a collective sigh of relief quietly overcame the group…

    Conditions that day were beautiful.

    Flat, calm seas, a slight breeze, and no rain in sight.

    A perfect day for ocean conservation and diving.

    Let the day begin.

    Quickly, the masses of people started to turn up, joining the line of cars stretching along Ocean Drive.

    The excitement in the air was palpable.

    Smiling faces and eager divers filled the area, anxious to sign their waivers and get the day going.

    Volunteers began to don their new participant shirts with the intricate octopus design formulated by one of our very own team members.

    Divers scrambled to assemble their gear and head towards the water.

    Instructor Erik brought the fun and entertainment per usual, showing up wearing his signature blow-up lobster costume.

    He yelled, “eat more lionfish”!

    Classic Erik.

    Happy and hydrated, divers started filing into the water and topside support volunteers assumed their positions on the pier.

    Aside from having their own collection bags and/or ZooKeepers to hold debris…

    Buckets with holes drilled into them attached to ropes were sent down to the ocean as additional debris receptacles.

    Note: we held a mini pier clean-up in 2021, open to a small group to help collect debris that had accumulated.

    At 11:15 that day, the raffle drawing took place to give away some great prizes!

    Scubapro donated a MK11/ S270 regulator.

    Aqua Lung donated a Leg3nd MBS yoke regulator.

    ZooKeeper donated a sweet lionfish hunting set, a pink ZooKeeper and spear.

    The Ocean Conservancy donated a YETI cooler.

    Coral Reef Alliance donated a CORAL dry bag and swag from the Coral Reef Alliance.

    DRYFOB donated a waterproof car key container for diving.

    4Ocean donated 2 separate swag bags.

    Divers even got a chance to be featured on the Deerfield Beach underwater camera that is permanently stationed under the pier!

    Now you may be wondering what happened to the collected debris after it was hoisted up onto the Deerfield Beach International Fishing Pier…

    Collected Debris

    Fish under the pier - Pier Clean-up 2022Diver collecting debris at the Pier Clean-up 2022

    The Loggerhead Marinelife Center volunteered to take on the debris post collection to sort, weigh, and document the recovered debris.

    Now, sorting through all this debris is no small task.

    Loggerhead Marinelife Center is still working on the final numbers, but they did provide us with the data they have sorted thus far.

    Total weight of the collected debris comes out to: 610 lbs. (so far)

    We’re still waiting on the final weight of the monofilament collected, but you can see the rest of the weights and counts below.

    Weight of lead weights collected: 493 lbs.

    Fishing debris collected include the following…

    • 638 fishing hooks
    • 4,829 individual lead weights
    • 71 lures
    • 566 fishing swivels
    • 127 wire leaders, used for fishing

    Now besides all the fishing debris collected that day…

    Beach goer debris was still ever present.

    Random items were also collected that may or may not have been used for fishing…

    Like the 24 rods, 3 reels, 4 bobbers, or the net collected.

    Check out the list below to see the counts for each random item collected that day.

    Random items found:

    • 8 ropes
    • 1 net
    • 8 pieces of rubber
    • 7 tools
    • 3 aluminum cans
    • 5 batteries
    • 2 vapes
    • 4 bolts
    • 24 rods
    • 56 nails
    • 4 bobbers
    • 3 reels
    • 1 PVC pipe
    • 6 cloth pieces
    • 1 glove
    • 1 fork
    • 2 sunglasses
    • 9 glass pieces
    • 2 bottles
    • fiberglass
    • trash grabber
    • 46 plastic balls

    Quite the assortment of debris!

    Let’s look into what is being done with some of this debris once official counts are completed.

    Post Pier Clean-up

    Debris collected from the Pier Clean-up 2022

    For one, Cody Mott from Inwater Research Group will be collecting all the fishing hooks for a project they’re working on.

    The goal is to conduct research to develop a new type of fishing hook that minimizes the damage inflicted on the fish.

    Lead weights collected are being used for educational purposes, per the International Game Fish Association (IGFA) and The Loggerhead Marinelife Center.

    Here at DXDIVERS, we’re working with PADI’s Project AWARE to write a report detailing the debris collected and the environmental impact of this event.

    Additionally, through PADI’s new program, PADI: Adopt the Blue, we are working on making the Deerfield Beach International Fishing Pier a designated DXDIVERS dive site.

    Adopting the site means so much to us, as we have been diving this site for over 15 years in an effort to facilitate more conservation practices.

    Stay tuned as we are still working on the application and we will have more details after the process is completed.

    If you would like to read more about our history with the Deerfield Beach Pier Clean-up, click here.

    Final Thoughts

    Diver collecting debris from the Pier Clean-up 2022

    As you can see, there’s quite a bit to be collected from the Deerfield Beach Pier and surrounding reefs.

    Imagine if this debris was left in the ocean, only to accumulate further.

    It’s important that we realize our responsibility as humans and as divers to protect our oceans and bodies of water.

    DXDIVERS is proud of the efforts of all participants, sponsors, and donors to this vital cause!

    But wait!

    The Annual Pier Clean-up is not our only conservation event.

    During the summer, we regularly schedule “Trashy Fridays” also known as “Filthy Fridays” for regular debris collection on the reefs we visit.

    Get prizes like free boat trips, fills, and DXD merch when you collect the biggest piece of trash or most pieces of debris that day.

    Lionfish derbies in partnership with ZooKeeper are scheduled throughout the year in an effort to cull the invasive species wreaking havoc on our reefs.

    On August 21, 2022 we will be holding a reef clean-up, in partnership with the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) and the Southeast Florida Coral Reef Initiative (SEFCRI) on the Lady Go Diver.

    This will take place on the afternoon trip, check in at the store at 12:30PM.

    The cost is the normal boat trip rate of $75, but any clean-up participants can get $10 off by using code:

    REEFCLEAN22 during checkout on FareHarbor.

    If you would like to sign up for that event, click here.

    And of course, we could never have held this event without the efforts of all the volunteers underwater and topside that made this all possible!

    Let us know in the comments if you participated in this year’s DFB Annual Pier Clean-up and let us know what you think!

    Happy diving!

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