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E-M:/ Time to get a "Habitattitude" on invasive species



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Enviro-Mich message from "Alex J. Sagady & Associates" <ajs@sagady.com>
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JOINT NEWS RELEASE FROM
NATIONAL OCEANIC & ATMOSPHERIC ADMINISTRATION * GREAT LAKES SEA GRANT 
NETWORK * US FISH & WILDLIFE SERVICE * PET INDUSTRY JOINT ADVISORY COUNCIL

For Immediate Release
DATE: 9/23/04
CONTACTS: Marshall Myers, Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council, (202) 452-1525
Ken Burton, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, (202) 208-5657
Ben Sherman, NOAA, (301) 713-3066 ext. 178, Cell: 202-253-5256
Marie Zhuikov, Minnesota Sea Grant, (218) 726-7677

PET, WATER GARDEN INDUSTRIES, RESOURCE AGENCIES UNITE TO CREATE A NEW 
'HABITATTITUDE' ON AQUATIC INVASIVE SPECIES

Federal agencies and the pet industry are teaming up to help consumers 
prevent the release and escape of non-native plants and animals through 
HabitattitudeTM, a new public education and outreach effort launched today 
at the Super Zoo trade show in Las Vegas, Nev.  The government-industry 
coalition is formed from the Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council, the U.S. 
Fish and Wildlife Service, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric 
Administration and the Great Lakes Sea Grant Network.

HabitattitudeTM encourages aquarium owners and water gardeners to avoid 
unwanted introductions of non-native species by adopting simple prevention 
steps when faced with an unwanted aquatic plant or fish:

- Contact a retailer for proper handling advice or for possible returns.
- Give/trade with another aquarist, pond owner or water gardener.
- Donate to a local aquarium society, school or aquatic business.
- Seal aquatic plants in plastic bags and dispose in the trash.
- Contact a veterinarian or pet retailer for guidance on humane disposal of 
animals.

"Beginning this fall, when aquarium hobbyists, backyard pond owners and 
water gardeners go to purchase fish or plants for their tanks or ponds, 
they'll receive the HabitattitudeTM message," said Marshall Meyers, 
Executive Vice President and General Counsel of the Pet Industry Joint 
Advisory Council (PIJAC).  "Through collaboration with NOAA's Sea Grant 
Program, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, state fish and wildlife 
agencies, the American Nursery and Landscape Association and other industry 
partners, we plan to get HabitattitudeTM in front of millions of consumers."

HabitattitudeTM materials will be displayed in aquarium stores, aquatic 
retail outlets, hobby magazines and nursery and landscape businesses across 
the country, as well as on packaging of related products.

A new Web site, www.habitattitude.net, will help consumers to learn more 
about responsible behaviors and how to prevent the spread of potential 
aquatic nuisance species.  The site includes information on federal and 
state laws and statutes that regulate aquatic organisms, recommended 
alternatives to releasing plants and animals, instructions on how 
individuals and clubs can get involved and detailed information on some of 
the more problematic aquarium and water garden species that have created 
problems with our native aquatic systems.

"The United States Commission on Ocean Policy Report details how we should 
coordinate public education and outreach efforts on aquatic invasive 
species with the aim of increasing public awareness about the importance of 
prevention.  This program falls right in line with that recommendation," 
said retired Navy Vice Admiral Conrad C. Lautenbacher, Ph.D., 
undersecretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere and NOAA 
administrator. "Non-native plants and animals can cause irreparable harm to 
the environment and can damage recreational and commercial uses of our 
aquatic resources."

"HabitattitudeTM builds on the successful government, business and citizen 
partnership that is helping stem the spread of the zebra mussel across the 
United States," said U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Director Steve 
Williams.  "While most invasive species come into the country as 
hitchhikers through commercial trade, some aquarium owners and water 
gardeners have unknowingly complicated the challenge invasive species pose 
for conserving America's wildlife and landscapes. HabitattitudeTM will give 
them the knowledge they need to help them prevent invasive species 
introductions and conserve the natural world they appreciate so much."

"This partnership focuses on raising public awareness, engaging people, and 
promoting simple and consistent actions that help conserve our natural 
resources," said Mamie Parker, co-chair of the ANS Task Force and Assistant 
Director for Fisheries and Habitat Conservation with the U.S. Fish and 
Wildlife Service.  "It's not about the fish and plants but about promoting 
responsible behaviors."

PIJAC and its members, who represent 70 percent of the U.S. pet industry 
and 90 percent of the aquarium industry, have committed over $1.1 million 
to the campaign.  Their contribution leveraged a $300,000 grant from NOAAšs 
National Sea Grant College Program to Minnesota Sea Grant and a $100,000 
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service effort.

NOAA is dedicated to protecting and preserving our nation's living marine 
resources and the habitat on which they depend, through scientific 
research, management and enforcement. NOAA's stewardship of these resources 
benefits the nation by supporting coastal communities, while helping to 
provide safe and healthy seafood to consumers and recreational 
opportunities for the American public.  To learn more about NOAA, please 
visit http://www.noaa.gov.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is the principal federal agency 
responsible for conserving, protecting and enhancing fish, wildlife and 
plants and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American 
people.  To learn more about the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, please 
visit htt                    JOINT NEWS RELEASE FROM
NATIONAL OCEANIC & ATMOSPHERIC ADMINISTRATION * GREAT LAKES SEA GRANT 
NETWORK * US FISH & WILDLIFE SERVICE * PET INDUSTRY JOINT ADVISORY COUNCIL

For Immediate Release
DATE: 9/23/04
CONTACTS: Marshall Myers, Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council, (202) 452-1525
Ken Burton, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, (202) 208-5657
Ben Sherman, NOAA, (301) 713-3066 ext. 178, Cell: 202-253-5256
Marie Zhuikov, Minnesota Sea Grant, (218) 726-7677

PET, WATER GARDEN INDUSTRIES, RESOURCE AGENCIES UNITE TO CREATE A NEW 
'HABITATTITUDE' ON AQUATIC INVASIVE SPECIES

Federal agencies and the pet industry are teaming up to help consumers 
prevent the release and escape of non-native plants and animals through 
HabitattitudeTM, a new public education and outreach effort launched today 
at the Super Zoo trade show in Las Vegas, Nev.  The government-industry 
coalition is formed from the Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council, the U.S. 
Fish and Wildlife Service, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric 
Administration and the Great Lakes Sea Grant Network.

HabitattitudeTM encourages aquarium owners and water gardeners to avoid 
unwanted introductions of non-native species by adopting simple prevention 
steps when faced with an unwanted aquatic plant or fish:

- Contact a retailer for proper handling advice or for possible returns.
- Give/trade with another aquarist, pond owner or water gardener.
- Donate to a local aquarium society, school or aquatic business.
- Seal aquatic plants in plastic bags and dispose in the trash.
- Contact a veterinarian or pet retailer for guidance on humane disposal of 
animals.

"Beginning this fall, when aquarium hobbyists, backyard pond owners and 
water gardeners go to purchase fish or plants for their tanks or ponds, 
they'll receive the HabitattitudeTM message," said Marshall Meyers, 
Executive Vice President and General Counsel of the Pet Industry Joint 
Advisory Council (PIJAC).  "Through collaboration with NOAA's Sea Grant 
Program, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, state fish and wildlife 
agencies, the American Nursery and Landscape Association and other industry 
partners, we plan to get HabitattitudeTM in front of millions of consumers."

HabitattitudeTM materials will be displayed in aquarium stores, aquatic 
retail outlets, hobby magazines and nursery and landscape businesses across 
the country, as well as on packaging of related products.

A new Web site, www.habitattitude.net, will help consumers to learn more 
about responsible behaviors and how to prevent the spread of potential 
aquatic nuisance species.  The site includes information on federal and 
state laws and statutes that regulate aquatic organisms, recommended 
alternatives to releasing plants and animals, instructions on how 
individuals and clubs can get involved and detailed information on some of 
the more problematic aquarium and water garden species that have created 
problems with our native aquatic systems.

"The United States Commission on Ocean Policy Report details how we should 
coordinate public education and outreach efforts on aquatic invasive 
species with the aim of increasing public awareness about the importance of 
prevention.  This program falls right in line with that recommendation," 
said retired Navy Vice Admiral Conrad C. Lautenbacher, Ph.D., 
undersecretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere and NOAA 
administrator. "Non-native plants and animals can cause irreparable harm to 
the environment and can damage recreational and commercial uses of our 
aquatic resources."

"HabitattitudeTM builds on the successful government, business and citizen 
partnership that is helping stem the spread of the zebra mussel across the 
United States," said U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Director Steve 
Williams.  "While most invasive species come into the country as 
hitchhikers through commercial trade, some aquarium owners and water 
gardeners have unknowingly complicated the challenge invasive species pose 
for conserving America's wildlife and landscapes. HabitattitudeTM will give 
them the knowledge they need to help them prevent invasive species 
introductions and conserve the natural world they appreciate so much."

"This partnership focuses on raising public awareness, engaging people, and 
promoting simple and consistent actions that help conserve our natural 
resources," said Mamie Parker, co-chair of the ANS Task Force and Assistant 
Director for Fisheries and Habitat Conservation with the U.S. Fish and 
Wildlife Service.  "It's not about the fish and plants but about promoting 
responsible behaviors."

PIJAC and its members, who represent 70 percent of the U.S. pet industry 
and 90 percent of the aquarium industry, have committed over $1.1 million 
to the campaign.  Their contribution leveraged a $300,000 grant from NOAA s 
National Sea Grant College Program to Minnesota Sea Grant and a $100,000 
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service effort.

NOAA is dedicated to protecting and preserving our nation's living marine 
resources and the habitat on which they depend, through scientific 
research, management and enforcement. NOAA's stewardship of these resources 
benefits the nation by supporting coastal communities, while helping to 
provide safe and healthy seafood to consumers and recreational 
opportunities for the American public.  To learn more about NOAA, please 
visit http://www.noaa.gov.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is the principal federal agency 
responsible for conserving, protecting and enhancing fish, wildlife and 
plants and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American 
people.  To learn more about the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, please 
visit http://www.fws.gov.

                             - 30 -




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