Lost Gear, Found Heroes

Our fellow division Aquarium of the Bay challenged Truth Be Told to create a story that helped explain how some leaders in the fishing industry are addressing the issue of lost fishing gear. A marine debris story evolved to include a chapter on sustainable seafood. Come on a journey with us to meet a few of the people who are making an important difference in the world of ocean health. After watching the video, scroll down for ideas for how you can be an everyday ocean hero, too.

Take Action—Be Part of the Solution to Plastic Pollution

Individual Action:

  • Use reusable every day, and make them part of your routine. For instance, remembering your reusable bags and coffee mug will help the watershed and save you money—you’ll avoid bag fees and most coffee places give a discount for drinks in reusable containers. You can find reusable products for sale at the Sea Lion Center or at our partner organization, Aquarium of the Bay.

  • Recycle and compost what you cannot reuse—make a goal of reducing your daily contribution to landfill.

  • Choose sustainable seafood according to Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch® recommendations—seafood from these fisheries is better managed, often resulting in less derelict fishing gear and less entanglement of marine animals.

  • If shopping, look for products made from recycled materials and packaged in little to no plastic. Check out a number of ‘green gifts’ at the Sea Lion Center and Aquarium of the Bay stores.

  • Support our partners, such as our fellow bay.org organization The Bay Institute, who work on increasing fresh water flows to the Bay. A healthy bay means more food for our Sea Lions.

Communal Action:

  • Support legislation and initiatives that aim to reduce plastic pollution, such as plastic bag and takeout container ordinances, and Extended Producer Responsibility programs.

  • Join local coastal cleanups whenever possible. The Sea Lion Center’s partner organization, Aquarium of the Bay, helps lead local coastal cleanups.  During Coastal Cleanup day in September 2013, with 90 volunteers, 200 pounds of trash from the beach and Bay were removed—including over 2,800 cigarette butts, more than 100 plastic straws and stirrers, and about 50 plastic bags.

How you can help the Sea Lion Center take action:

  • Join the Sea Lion Club to stay informed.

  • Support organizations working on reducing marine debris and plastic pollution

  • Look for and use the three bin sorting system (recycling, compost, and landfill) in and around your own neighborhood.

  • Check out the program below for more information:


The average life span of a California Sea Lion is 20–25 years.
Sea Lions are considered “opportunistic feeders,” eating available prey rather than one species.